teleMates Australia Pty Ltd (teleMates) understands that financial hardship may be experienced by our customers at some point in their account life cycle.We have designed a Financial Hardship Policy that outlines how teleMates can assist you and how we will manage customer accounts that are experiencing genuine financial hardship.
You may be experiencing Financial Hardship when you are unable to meet the financial obligations of your agreement with teleMates for reasonable causes over a limited or long period of time.
Reasonable causes of financial hardship may include:
Loss of employment
Family breakdown or death in the family
Illness, including physical incapacity, hospitalisation, or mental illness of the customer or family member
If you are experiencing financial hardship you may need assistance from us to change your payment and/or service arrangements so that your obligations to us can be met.
If you are a residential customer or a small business customer and are experiencing financial hardship, this policy may apply to you.teleMates will assess your claim for eligibility and will consider your individual circumstances as part of the assessment.Please note that if you are simply experiencing temporary payment difficulty, this policy would not apply to you. Please call our Customer Service Department on 1800 777 055 to discuss your situation.
How teleMates Can Assist You
teleMates has dedicated representatives that have received specialist training to assist you or your authorised representative with your Financial Hardship claim.
You are able to contact our Financial Hardship Officers between 9.00am and 6.00pm EST Monday to Friday (excluding Public Holidays) on 131501.
We will assess your claim, discuss your payment and service options with you and aim to reach a reasonable outcome.
In addition to contacting us, teleMates urges you to engage the assistance of a financial counsellor. We are aware that there are sometimes waiting lists to see financial counsellors so in the interim you may be asked for documents to substantiate your claim.
Managing Your Claim
We may ask you to submit evidence to us to support your claim. Please refer to the section in this policy that lists types of evidence that we may ask from you.
We will take into account your circumstance and financial position to reach a financial arrangement that is suitable to both parties.
Payment arrangements will be made with the view to cover any future use and reduce your debt.
We may suggest that some or all of your services be restricted to prevent you falling further in debt whilst the arrangement is in place. We will attempt to contact you if this action becomes necessary and has not been discussed with you.
We will send you written confirmation of the agreed arrangement if you request us to do so.
We will attempt to contact you both by telephone and letter should the arrangement not be kept by you prior to taking further credit management action.
If you require us to review your arrangement due to a change in your circumstance we will do so.
Whilst your payment arrangement remains in place we will not report your debt to a Credit Reporting Agency.
You must make the agreed payments on the agreed dates.
You must show a willingness to reduce usage to a minimum during the term of the financial arrangement
You will contact us within 48 hours of an agreed payment date if you are unable to keep your commitment.
You will contact us to advise us if your circumstance has changed favourably or unfavourably during the term of the arrangement.
You will act promptly and honestly at all times throughout the course of this arrangement.
Termination Of The Arrangement
In the event the arrangement is not adhered to and we have not been contacted by you, we will take reasonable steps to contact you or your authorised representative before taking further action.
The arrangement will be considered terminated after this time and full credit management action will resume.
In the event that you choose to cancel your account with teleMates, the arrangement will no longer be valid and normal credit management action will apply.
Failure to make the agreed payments on a regular basis may be viewed negatively and result in termination of the arrangement.
Required Documentation To Support Your Claim
teleMates may ask for any of the below types of evidence to support your claim of financial hardship:
Statement of financial position
Evidence that you have engaged a financial counsellor or evidence of a pending appointment to see a financial counsellor.
Statutory Declaration from a person that is familiar with your situation. (Family Doctor, Clergy, Bank Officer, etc.)
Medical certificates from treating specialist or other medical professionals.
The contacts below may be of assistance to you for your state or territory:
ACT Care Financial Counselling Service 02 6257 1788
New South Wales Credit and debt Hotline 1800 808 488
Northern Territory Anglicare Financial Counselling Service 08 8948 2700
Queensland Financial counsellors Association of Queensland 07 3321 3192
South Australia Uniting Care Wesley Adelaide 08 8202 5180
Tasmania Anglicare Financial Counselling Service 1800 243 232
Victoria Consumer Affairs Victoria 1300 55 81 81
Western AustraliaFinancial Counsellors Resource Project 08 9221 9411