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‘Disappointing decision’: ASIC loses Westpac responsible lending case

ASIC has lost a federal court case against Westpac over claims around responsible lending.

Westpac was found not to have breached responsible lending laws in almost 262,000 home loans it approved using an automated system.

The bank admitted to using an automated loan approval system instead of individually assessing a borrowers living costs.

The judge said a customer may “eat Wagyu beef” and drink “the finest shiraz” but will be able to change their habits to repay a loan.

Consumer Action Law Centre CEO Gerard Brody tells Ross Greenwood it is a “very disappointing decision”.

“What the court has said is that, well actually we shouldn’t worry too much about expenses because people can cut their expenses… for many people in the community that’s not a realistic proposition.”

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