Multifaceted world of debt tutors

Isaac Moledi

Isaac Moledi

If you can demonstrate the ability to manage your own finances and if you are able to provide training and counselling to debtors, you might be a candidate to apply to the National Credit Regulator (NCR) to register as a debt counsellor.

Applicants should be above the age of 18 and have a grade 12 certificate or equivalent Level 4 qualification issued by the South African Qualifications Authority.

They must have successfully completed a debt counselling course approved by the NCR and provided by an institution approved by the NCR.

In addition, individuals should have a minimum of two years' working experience in areas related to consumer protection, complaints resolution or consumer advisory services, legal or para-legal services and accounting or financial services.

According to Mpho Thekiso, project manager at the NCR, trained debt counsellors are required in terms of the National Credit Act.

The sections of the act relevant to over-indebtedness, debt counselling and debt restructuring become effective at the beginning of June this year.

The act states that a consumer is over-indebted if he or she is, or will be, unable to timeously meet his or her obligations in terms of the credit agreements which he or she is party to.

This should take into consideration the consumer's financial means, prospects and obligations and probable propensity to timeously satisfy these obligations.

The aim of the training is to ensure that debt counsellors are equipped with the relevant skills to demonstrate a high standard of service delivery on the debt counseling process and have a good understanding of the act.

Debt counsellors, according to Thekiso, should be well versed in credit practices as well as court processes, such as repossessions and administration orders.

Debt counsellors should also be able to assess whether a consumer is over-indebted or not, he said.