Loan repayments made five days late now lead to bad credit listing

CONSUMERS who make loan payments only five days late will now have the late payment listed on their credit files.

Legal Aid Queensland senior consumer protection lawyer Loretta Kreet said new credit reporting laws could result in consumers struggling to get personal or housing loans for up to two years after the late payment was made.

“The new laws help lenders to easily assess whether a borrower can pay the loan, and no longer rely on a customer verbally verifying how many credit cards and personal loans they already have,” Ms Kreet said.

“However, the new laws report on a borrower’s payment history for the last two years, which means people may have difficulty getting a loan long after a fairly minor infringement has occurred.”

From March 12, the new laws mean credit reporting agencies will have access to more comprehensive information on people such as:

  • The type and amount of credit they have sought in applications;
  • Credit limits and dates their accounts have opened and closed;
  • Two years worth of payment history showing missed or late payments; or
  • If any serious credit infrigement has been committed.

“People also need to be aware of credit repair companies fooling people into believing all negative listings on credit reports can be erased,” Mr Kreet said.

“Some credit repair companies are charging up to $1000 to remove each negative credit history listing, but the only way a listing can be removed is if it is incorrect and shouldn’t be there in the first place.

“If a consumer thinks a listing on their credit file is incorrect, they should get legal advice.”

GET AN UPDATE ON YOUR CREDIT FILE, HERE: www.oaic.gov.au

Bus driver who killed another motorist after running red light jailed

A GOLD Coast bus driver who killed another driver after running a red light in Nerang last year has today been jailed and disqualified from driving for two years.

The Gold Coast Bulletin reports David Sawtell, 37, was driving a Surfside bus when he became distracted as the lights turned red at the intersection of McLaren and Beadesert-Nerang roads.

The bus slammed into a Camry being driven by a 62-year-old man, spearing his car into a power pole. He later died after suffering a cardiac arrest.

Mr Sawtell was charged with dangerous operation of a vehicle causing death and subsequently fired from his position with Surfside.

He appeared in the Southport District Court today and was sentenced to 18 months in prison. The Bulletin says he will be granted parole in July after serving four months.

Gold Coast mother left shaking and crying after road rage incident

A GOLD Coast mother who was almost run off the road by an enraged driver on the Pacific Motorway today has been reduced to tears.

The woman had her one-year-old son in the car when she was confronted by an angry male driver in a silver Ford Territory around 12.25pm this afternoon.

In a hurry to get nowhere fast, the man attempted to over-take the woman while travelling south on the M1 at Nerang, but there was no room.

With her baby boy in the back seat, she slowed down to allow the man in front.

He attempted to get in front of the woman for a second time, but again didn’t have enough room.

Clearly agitated, he swerved directly at her. Fearing for her son’s life, the woman was forced to take evasive action and jump on the brakes.

After multiple failed attempts to over-take, instead of using the opportunity to pass the woman while she had braked, the male driver instead chose to tail gated the woman for approximately 10km until she was able to merge off the motorway at Mudgeeraba.

He then continued on towards Burleigh Heads.

The woman’s sister took to social media to warn others of the potentially dangerous driver.

“Shaking and crying, she has been distraught from this incident and my nephew too,” Tamsin told myGC.

“Please make people aware of this male driver who is dangerous and could target other motorists.”

Thankfully, no one was physically injured.

Petrol prices set to go up again

The RACQ has warned great deals on offer for unleaded petrol on the Gold Coast won’t last, and has urged motorists to fill up their tanks now.

The average price of ULP locally is $1.45 a litre according to Motormouth.

RACQ spokesperson Renee Smith said prices wouldn’t stay low for long.

“Our advice is to fill up now, with the cheap phase of the petrol price cycle expected to end at any time,” Ms Smith said.

“These are the cheapest prices we’ve seen so far this year. Many retailers in the south east are currently selling ULP below wholesale price, so we encourage motorists to purchase without delay.”

The warning comes after we were recently forced to pay up around the $1.60 mark a few weeks back.

Tough new laws to tackle youth crime in Queensland

TOUGH reforms targeting repeat juvenile offenders and Queensland’s growing youth crime problem have been passed in Parliament.

[signoff icon=”icon-attach”]Reforms include:

  • Allowing the identities of repeat offenders to be published by the media. The publishing of first time offenders will continue to be prohibited.
  • A new offence for breach of bail.
  • Making all juvenile criminal histories available in adult courts to give a Magistrate or Judge a complete understanding of a defendant’s history
  • Removing detention as a last resort to give the court more discretion during sentencing
  • Transferring juvenile offenders to adult correctional centres when they reach 17 years of age if they have six or more months of their sentence remaining.[/signoff]

Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Jarrod Bleijie said the reforms were about stopping the revolving door of repeat offending.

“Last year 400 young people were charged with more than 7,000 offences while on bail,” he said.

“Our tough, necessary and fair reforms will make recidivist offenders more accountable for their actions but will also provide opportunities for them to turn their lives around.”

“Many of these reforms specifically target repeat offenders, not kids who make a silly mistake and learn from it.”

“The Government listened during the committee process and, to combat a worrying car theft problem in Townsville, repeat vehicle offenders in the area will now be sentenced to a mandatory boot camp order.

“In our boot camps, participants are taught discipline and self-respect and they have access to programs that will help them continue their education or get a job.

“Our boot camp trial teaches discipline and life skills and it has been described as a ‘welcome innovation’ by President of the Children’s Court Justice Michael Shanahan.

“So far 85 young Queenslanders have taken part in the camps and parents and teachers have noticed big, positive changes in their behaviour.

“We will soon unveil the next phase in our youth justice overhaul, which will focus on prevention and addressing the cause of repeat offending.

“The Government’s Blueprint for the Future of Youth Justice in Queensland will be a key component of the Government’s youth justice reforms.

“The Blueprint will include long term, evidence-based reform and the close engagement of partner agencies and organisations in the delivery of integrated services to at-risk children.

“We are keeping our promise to Queenslanders to get tough on arrogant repeat offenders while ensuring Queensland’s at-risk young people are supported and assisted.”