ANZ has again apologised for charging customers for a service they didn’t receive.
The bank has entered into an enforceable undertaking with the Australian Securities & Investment Commission (ASIC), stemming from its controversial Prime Access wealth package.
ANZ’s Prime Access package gave paying customers priority to receive financial planning services from the bank.
It also included a written annual review, but between 2006 and 2013, an ASIC investigation found more than 10,000 customers didn’t receive the review.
ANZ subsequently said it would compensate those customers — a response which was approved by ASIC in 2015.
“The compensation program is nearing completion and as at 28 February 2018, ANZ has paid $46.81 million (including earnings) in compensation to these customers (with the total compensation estimated at $46.85 million),” ASIC said.
As part of the enforceable undertaking, senior ANZ wealth management executives will have to provide “reasonable assurance” to an independent expert that ANZ has been providing the annual reviews as required since 2014.
In addition, management will have to provide evidence that ANZ now has control systems in place to prevent a repeat of the Prime Access wealth package debacle.
The bank will also be required to make a $3 million contribution to not-for-profit community organisations.
“We have apologised to those customers who did not receive an annual documented review, between 2006 and early 2013,” ANZ executive Alexis George said.
“We acknowledge we did not meet customers’ expectations by not providing them the services we promised. We have since introduced measures to prevent this from happening again and have largely completed making remediation payments to impacted clients.”
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