Showing posts with label compensation. Show all posts
Showing posts with label compensation. Show all posts

Wednesday, 2 May 2018

Q. If Telstra steals est. $60 million, repays $5 million in compensation and is fined $10 million, leaving a profit of $45 million - how big are the telco’s performance bonuses this year?

Readers with a Telstra mobile phone account need to check that their phone was not set to ‘Premium Direct Billing’ before 3 March 2018.

Because although Telstra put out a media release there was no promise to proactively contact all mobile customers with this news below and, the telco will be be deciding which individual account holders (who have been overcharged for a service they did not consent to) will be contacted concerning compensation.

It is possible it will not manage to contact every customer who had been improperly charged. So if you suspect that you may have been then phone Telstra.

New Matilda, 27 April 2018: 
Ordinarily, when you get caught stealing, you have to pay the money back, and the punishment you receive is meant to dissuade you from stealing again.

Unless you’re a major Australian corporation. In which case, you can steal tens of millions of dollars from your ‘valued clients’, pay a fine that represents a tiny proportion of what you pinched, issue a few million in refunds… and then keep the rest.

Introducing Telstra and its third-party ‘Premium Direct Billing’ scam, which netted Australia’s biggest Telco a cool $45 million profit, after fines and refunds.

Yesterday, the Federal Court fined Telstra $10 million for the rip-off after it found that Telstra “did not adequately inform customers it had set the Premium Direct Billing service as a default on their mobile accounts. If customers accessed content through this service, even unintentionally, they were billed directly by Telstra”.

“Thousands of Telstra mobile phone customers unwittingly signed up to subscriptions without being required to enter payment details or verify their identity.

By introducing and operating the Premium Direct Billing service, Telstra generated substantial profits by exposing customers to unauthorised charges,” Chairman of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission Rod Sims announced in a media statement.

The prosecution was launched by the ACCC with powers delegated from the Australian Securities & Investments Commission. You might remember that sleepy Australian corporate watchdog from such scandals as the banking royal commission....

“Telstra estimates it has provided refunds of at least $5 million, and it will review any future complaints in light of this action and deal with those customers in good faith. The ACCC estimates further refunds may be in the order of several million dollars.”

Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Another how low can they go moment courtesy of the Catholic Church in Australia

The Sydney Morning Herald, 12 February 2018:

The Catholic Church in Australia is worth tens of billions of dollars, making it one of the country’s biggest non-government property owners, and massively wealthier than it has claimed in evidence to major inquiries into child sexual abuse.

A six-month investigation by The Sydney Morning Herald has found that the church misled the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse by grossly undervaluing its property treasures in both NSW and Victoria while claiming that increased payments to abuse victims would require cuts to its social programs.
The investigation was based on intricate data from local councils that allowed more than 1860 valuations of church-owned property in Victoria. That showed that across 36 municipalities - including nearly all of metropolitan Melbourne - the church had land and buildings worth almost $7 billion in 2016.

Extrapolated nationally, using conservative assumptions, the church owns property worth more than $30 billion Australia-wide.

This put the Catholic church among the largest non-government property owners, by value, in NSW and Australia, rivalling Westfield’s network of shopping centres and other assets. It dwarfs all other large property owners.

"These figures confirm what we have known; there is huge inequity between the Catholic Church’s wealth and their responses to survivors," said Helen Last, chief executive of the In Good Faith Foundation.

"The 600 survivors registered for our Foundation’s services continue to experience minimal compensation and lack of comprehensive care in relation to their Church abuses. They say their needs are the lowest of church priorities.’’…..

Monetary payments to abuse survivors have averaged just $49,000 under Towards Healing, the national compensation system established by the church in 1996……

The church also has extensive non-property assets including Catholic Church Insurance and its own internal banks - often known as Catholic Development Funds - with nearly $1 billion in assets in Sydney alone.

And it has other investments, including in superannuation, telecommunications and in the stock-market. A Church-owned fund manager has more than $1.4 billion under management.