Reprieve for blacklisted consumers

first_img5 September 2013 Previously blacklisted consumers have been given some breathing space, with the Cabinet approving a proposal to allow consumers who can afford to take up more debt to access credit once they have settled their debt. Briefing journalists in Pretoria on Thursday following the Cabinet’s latest fortnightly meeting, spokesperson Phumla Williams said that denying credit to previously blacklisted consumers “hinders growth”. “What tends to happen currently is that even if you have settled your debt, you still have to wait for a period of five years,” Williams said. “The proposal that has been made is to ensure that those that have settled their debt are able to continue their lives in terms of doing the business that they may wish to engage in.” The proposal was made by the Select Committee on Trade and International Relations following a report by the Removal of Adverse Credit Information Project. The report’s recommendations were first discussed in Parliament last year after it was noted that denying credit to those that were previously blacklisted without considering affordability was detrimental not only to consumers but also to the economy. Williams said the Department of Trade and Industry still needed to conclude internal processes before the Cabinet’s decision could come into effect. Meanwhile, Williams said the Cabinet had also approved several other Bills for introduction to Parliament, including the National Credit Amendment Bill, which seeks to give the National Credit Regulator (NCR) more powers to implement and enforce critical credit provisions. “The Bill aims to strengthen the capacity of the National Credit Regulator to address certain challenges, especially around court processes, and to strengthen enforcement and implementation of the provisions of the National Credit Act 34 of 2005.” Source: read more

House approves Rep Barretts air ambulance legislation

first_img Categories: Barrett News 06Dec House approves Rep. Barrett’s air ambulance legislation The Michigan House of Representatives today overwhelmingly approved air ambulance reform legislation sponsored by state Rep. Tom Barrett, of Potterville, ensuring patients fully acknowledge and understand the potential costs of air ambulance transport when it is not medically necessary.Barrett’s measure requires hospitals to only utilize air transport when medically necessary to save patients from outrageous and unnecessary medical costs. The provision does not apply in medical emergencies or where it is determined to be medically necessary to transport a patient by air.“In many instances, nonemergency patients are airlifted to hospitals only to later receive a medical bill costing tens of thousands of dollars, which has force many people into bankruptcy,” Barrett said.Some air ambulance companies currently participate in a practice called “balance billing” where the patient’s health care provider will pay for a portion of the bill, but not its entirety. This leaves patients with medical bills exceeding $10,000.“This common-sense legislation builds a framework to help lower medical costs and provide transparency,” Barrett said. “I want to thank my colleagues for voting in favor of this measure and keeping the best interests of patients at heart.”House Bill 5218 now moves to the Senate for consideration.#####last_img read more