Financial Hardship Policy
Financial Hardship is a situation that may arise where you are unable because of illness, unemployment or other reasonable cause, to discharge your financial obligations in relation to our services, but you believe that you will be able to discharge those obligations if the relevant payment arrangements or other arrangements relating to the supply of our services are changed.
Common contributing financial hardship factors include:
- loss of employment
- relationship breakdown
- loss of a family member
- natural disaster
We encourage you to contact us if you experience any difficulties paying our services.
Please contact us by calling 1300 110 393 if you would like to discuss any Financial Hardship matters with us. You can do so from Monday to Friday 9.00am to 5.00pm.
Managing your spend
There are options available to manage your spending whilst continuing to stay connected to the service. Examples include:
- All broadband services are prepaid but we will notify you of your usage by SMS when you reach 70% and 100% of the included data allowance
- For broadband services speed is reduced to 72 kbps once the monthly allowance is reached and is reduced in both directions
- For DSL services speed is reduced where the data allowance is exceeded
- The option of changing your plan
- Contacting us to determine your usage
When assessing your eligibility for Financial Hardship, we may ask you to provide certain documents to us. This may include:
- income details
- a statutory declaration or official written communication from a person or support group that is familiar with your circumstances
- evidence that you consulted a recognised financial counselor
- a statement of your financial position.
We may not be able to make an assessment of your circumstances if you do not provide us with the requested information.
We may use the information you provide as well as other information available to us. Once we received all required information, we will let you know within 7 working days whether you are eligible for assistance under our Financial Hardship Policy.
If you are eligible, will work with you to come to an arrangement that allows you to pay your outstanding charges in a way that does not worsen your financial position. Where appropriate we will discuss means with you how to limit your spend (this may include barring some service features) during the time of our arrangement and thereafter.
Once we come to an agreement we will put this in writing via letter or email to you. You must inform us if your circumstances change (for better or for worse) during our arrangement.
We will not charge you for assessing your Financial Hardship circumstances or for administering the matter.
Finding a financial counsellor
You can talk to a phone financial counsellor from anywhere in Australia by ringing 1800 007 007 (minimum opening hours are 9.30 am – 4.30 pm Monday to Friday). This number will automatically switch through to the service in the State or Territory closest to you.
Alternatively, you can find the financial counselling service nearest to you by visiting http://www.financialcounsellingaustralia.org.au/Corporate/Find-a-Counsellor.