Creating a fairer financial world.
In early 2020, many Kiwis were facing tough times. COVID-19 was adding to economic hardship for both business and employees. Companies were writing off losses and people were finding it harder to repay debts. What’s worse, some financial organisations and companies continue to penalise those already in financial strife by piling on fees and excessive interest. We’re a group of Kiwis who didn’t think that was fair, so we developed a business to challenge the status quo and create a fairer financial world. Welcome to DebtManagers.
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A highly experienced, highly trained team, who are all committed to creating a fairer financial future for more Kiwis.
Our code of practice.
Our code of conduct provides assurance and accountability of best practice behaviour when carrying out our debt management practice. Our mission is to create a fairer financial world where companies and their customers thrive. We achieve this by delivering on a unique philosophy that gives companies financial certainty and treats debtors with fairness, empathy, and respect. All of which is underpinned by world class training, best-in-class compliance and up-to-the-minute intuitive systems, equal to the highest standards of the country’s banking industry operations.
DebtManagers is committed to the following underlying principles in the conduct of its business:
- To treat people fairly and help create a fairer financial world where everyone thrives;
- To know, understand and live our values: Fast, Fair and Fearless every day;
- To be transparent in all our dealings and engage with trust-based communication when negotiating with vendors, suppliers and customers;
- To accept that Kanohi ki te Kanohi is a preferred method of communication for some people and ensure that clear, effective and appropriate policies for community visits are in place for this process;
- To not add fees, excessive interest or collection costs during the debt management cycle;
- To deal with people in a respectful way that recognises their fundamental rights and the need to weigh evenly the rights and obligations of all parties;
- To encourage, facilitate and support people in accessing financial mentors wherever possible and to rely on information from those mentors in order to provide debt management as per their recommendations.
A copy of this code is readily available and displayed at DebtManager’s offices. Copies available on request. All people working for DebtManagers understand and comply with this Code at all times.
In the day to day conduct of its business, DebtManagers will:
- Treat people lawfully and listen to reasons why payment has not been previously made. This listening will create positive debt management opportunities for all parties;
- Provide evidential proof supporting the DebtManagers position whenever requested;
- Work diligently and transparently to create and build no-harm debt management plans that are designed to be affordable, acceptable and amicable;
- Adapt to fluctuations and seasonality in personal circumstances and accommodate changes to debt management plans when such circumstances are articulated;
- Consider incentivisation for expedient payment if requested;
- Combine multiple accounts where possible to minimise repayment amounts;
- Constantly focus on what’s fair for all parties and see interactions across any communication medium as a meeting of equals. Concentrate on delivering professional and empathetic solutions.
DebtManagers will act with the highest standards of ethical behaviour in all our dealings, In particular DebtManagers will:
- Comply with all our procures and policies;
- Operate a culture of zero tolerance to bribery and corruption across all areas and levels of the business, as further detailed in the DebtManagers Anti-Bribery and Corruption Policy;
- Ensure oversight is retained at all times over our charitable donations and other contributions (in kind or in person).
When communicating with all parties, DebtManagers will:
- Communicate in a courteous and respectful manner using plain language;
- Wherever possible, DebtManagers will recommend financial mentors and provide their contact details for independent financial advice and/or support;
- Wherever possible ensure all communications used are through specified preferred method;
- Ensure contact including community visits are conducted at reasonable times and intervals;
- Explain DebtManagers processes when and if there is a shift from account management to collection;
- Respond to all requests for information in a timely manner.
Privacy and confidentiality
DebtManagers recognises the importance and obligation to ensure people’s privacy and confidentiality are protected. To achieve this DebtManagers will:
- Not leave phone messages that disclose the nature of the call;
- Not discuss affairs with any person other than the identified person unless there is evidential authorisation to do so;
- Not disclose any information to any person in the course of trying to locate somebody in a manner that might lead to identification of the purpose of the contact;
- Not unnecessarily visit a person’s place of employment.
When conducting a community visit at a residential or work address DebtManagers will:
- Act in accordance with the privacy principles outlined in the Privacy Act 2020;
- Clearly identify as DebtManagers prior to engaging in any discussion and explain the purpose of the visit;
- Advise that conversations may be recorded;
- Provide information about DebtManagers processes and leave copies of documentation that has been signed or relied upon to enter into a debt management plan.
Arrangements to pay
DebtManagers will create reasonable and practical debt management plans through:
- Fair consideration of offers when creating debt management plans;
- Acknowledging reasonable expense allowances when building an accurate assessment of a person’s financial position. DebtManagers reserves the right to request proof of income and outgoings to validate debt management plans but prefers to operate on a trust (non-evidential) basis in respect to the acquisition of financial information;
- The automatic conditional acceptance of regular repayments of $10 per week for essential service files with a balance of less than $2,500 or $20 per week for essential service files with a balance greater than $2,500. Conditional acceptance is based on DebtManagers being supplied with necessary information to support a debt management plan;
- Suspension, for a reasonable time, of a debt management plan if requested;
- Suspension of debt management communication while a plan is in place, subject to any legal disclosure obligations.
DebtManagers is a group of Kiwis who didn’t think it was fair to penalise those already in financial strife. We developed a business to challenge the status quo and create a fairer financial world. Accordingly we will assist people who are facing financial difficulty if information pertaining to the circumstances is provided e.g. illness, redundancy is shared. This may include:
- Referrals to financial mentors and/or budgeting services for independent advice and support;
- Postponement of any recovery action;
- Reduction in repayment amounts and/or a postponement of the payment period;
- Reduced settlements;
- Forgiveness of amounts under our Debt Relief Programme, where we believe that repayment would be counter to our purpose of creating a fairer financial world.
Complaints and engagement
In the first instance any formal complaints, including complaints arising from alleged breaches of this Code, should be addressed to:
For urgent matters or to discuss in person, calls can be made to the number above although any complaints are preferred to be registered in writing for auditing and training purposes.
Code training and status
All DebtManagers staff and the DebtManagers Board are instructed on this Code when they begin at DebtManagers and are given a refresher on it annually. All staff and Board members are notified of any changes to this Code.
This code has been prepared by Intercoll Ledger Limited for the exclusive use of DebtManagers in the management of its internal assurance and best practice procedures. Breach of the code is not in any way an admission of liability or breach of legal obligation by DebtManagers and the code cannot be used by third parties to support any action against the company or its employees or representatives. DebtManagers has the right to amend the code at any time.
How can we help?
Like a little more detail about our services or have a specific question? Please fill in the online form and one of our team members will be in touch within 2 business days.