Skype passes NCCP muster: Denovan - International Business Times (20 May 2011)

Monday, 20 May 2011

Face-to-face client interviews do not have to take place in person and can be held online, a law firm has stated.

In its latest release to brokers, Vow Financial stated that it has adopted a policy that brokers must conduct a face-to-face meeting with clients. In the release, Vow compliance officer administrator Kellie Hornsby wrote that Jon Denovan of Gadens Lawyers held the opinion that face-to-face will always mean in person, and therefore Skype interviews are not a suitable method of conducting client interviews.

However, Denovan has told Australian BrokerNews online interviews will pass muster for NCCP requirements. He commented that face-to-face meetings are not required by law.

"With proper protection it's not even required for prudent business practices. The person who's going to make the call in the end is the consumer, whether they want internet communication of face-to-face," Denovan said.

Denovan commented that lenders and aggregators need to adopt new technology and new ways of communication in order to stay relevant to the marketplace.

"They're going to have to or they'll go out of business," Denovan said.

In spite of the opportunities offered by new forms of communication, Denovan did issue a caveat for brokers looking to make online interaction their only point of contact with a client.

"If it does turn out to be identity fraud and the broker has done stuff online and that turns out to be the reason for the identity fraud, they'll get sued," Denovan said.

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