Wednesday, June 8, 2011

The Debit Order Conundrum

We, the Association, find ourselves in a somewhat peculiar situation in which we are being questioned by members, for abiding by a law, which was recently implemented to protect those who are posing the questions; it’s a conundrum, allow me to explain:

Not so long ago, we took the decision to allow members the option of paying for their annual subscription monthly on a Debit Order rather than upfront. This was very well received and many took us up on this offer which proved effective for all concerned.

One of the major reasons why both the Association and the members took a liking to it is that it meant we never had to chase them, it just happened seamlessly.

Now, with the advent of the Consumer Protection Act, by law, Debit Orders have to be submitted annually. They have made special allowances for certain circumstances such as Cellular operators with 24 month contracts, these are, however, exceptions, not the rule.

With 2011 subs due, what this means is we are now running around trying to get members to fill out a second Debit Order form, and this is where we are being questioned. It’s not always easy pinning down contractors and many are reluctant to make time for something they feel isn’t, or shouldn’t be necessary.

Something we have heard on more than one occasion is “No other company I have Debit Orders with have asked me to do this”. The truth is sooner or later they are going to. We have looked at this thoroughly and it’s what the Act stipulates, it is the law, there is no getting away from it.

Keep in mind it is there to protect you, and should be viewed as positive; we ask that members please work with us on this.

Ernest Roper
Durban Regional General Manager


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