ASIC takes NAB wealth entities to court for fees-for-no-service
The corporate regulator has announced it is taking NAB entities NULIS and MLC Nominees to the Federal Court for charging superannuation members for services that were not provided.
In a statement on Thursday, ASIC said it had commenced court proceedings against NULIS Nominees and MLC Nominees.
"ASIC alleges that NULIS and MLC Nominees (as the current and former superannuation trustee of NAB) misled members of MLC MasterKey Super products," the statement said.
The corporate regulator is alleging that both entities deducted $33 million in Plan Service Fees from 220,000 MLC superannuation members who did not have an adviser.
Furthermore, NAB deducted around $67 million Plan Service Fees from 300,000 members of MLC MasterKey Personal Super where members did not need services and advisers did not provide services.
"ASIC seeks from the Federal Court declarations of contravention and a civil penalty," the statement said.
The corporate regulator alleges that NULIS and MLC Nominees:
- contravened s912A(1)(a) of the Corporations Act 2001 in not providing services "efficiently, honestly and fairly" regarding the $33 million deducted in Plan Service Fees;
- "made false or misleading representations" to members with no advisers, contravening ss 12DB, 12DA of the ASIC Act and s1041H of the Corporations Act by representing to members that they were entitled to deduct the Plan Service Fee and the member (with no adviser) were obliged to pay it;
- contravened s912A(1)(a) of the Corporations Act in deducting $67.1 million from members where advisers did not provide services and members did not receive services;
- "made false or misleading representations," contravening s12DB and s12DA of the ASIC Act by failing to let members in MLC Masterkey Personal Super know they could turn off the Plan Service Fee; and
- "contravened s912A(1)(c) of the Corporations Act by failing to comply with financial services laws".
This includes issuing "defective disclosure statements"; "failing to exercise the degree of skill, care and diligence as a prudent trustee would exercise"; and "failing to act in the best interests of members".
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