The Credit and Investments Ombudsman (CIO) is an external dispute resolution (EDR) scheme for the financial services industry approved by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC).
Financial services providers (FSPs) who are participants of the CIO scheme include Australian Credit Licence (ACL) holders, Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) holders and Credit Representatives of ACL holders. For more information about financial services licensing and obligations please visit the ASIC website.
Other participating FSPs include a wide range of other types of FSPs who may not be required to join the scheme due to licence obligations but have decided to participate and agree to be bound by decisions made by CIO.
CIO is not government-funded, nor does it regulate the financial services industry or discipline participating FSPs.
- Membership of CIO — The Credit and Investments Ombudsman (CIO) is an external dispute resolution (EDR) scheme approved by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). We can therefore accept Australian Credit Licence (ACL) holders, Australian Financial Services Licence (AFSL) holders or Authorised Credit Representatives (ACR) of a credit licensee, as well as a wide range of other types of financial services providers as participants of the scheme.
- Apply for membership — Membership of the Credit and Investments Ombudsman (CIO) is open to any person or business providing financial services or products to consumers. CIO is an External Disputes Resolution (EDR) scheme approved by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). The majority of the participants of the CIO scheme are either an Australian Credit Licensee (ACL), Australian Financial Services Licensee (AFSL) or an Authorised Credit Representative (ACR).
- Renew Membership — CIO sends out renewal notices to its scheme participants once a year, normally a month before your membership is due for renewal.
- Accountants (Limited AFS licensees) — If you’re an accountant providing retail clients with advice on self-managed superannuation funds (SMSFs), you'll need to hold a 'limited' Australian financial services (AFS) licence from 1 July 2016.
- Fee Information — The Credit and Investments Ombudsman (CIO) is a not for profit association, with revenue sourced from a combination of membership and service fees. Financial services providers (FSPs) pay an annual fee for membership to participate in the scheme. Additionally, those FSPs who receive a complaint are charged for each complaint received, with the charged amount determined from the CIO complaint fee schedule
- Rebate — As a licensee CIO Member, you will receive one free complaint each year which entitles you to a refund of any service fees you pay us for a complaint made about you or one of your representatives in that year.
- Rules & Guidelines — Every participant of the CIO scheme is bound by and must comply with CIO's Rules.
- Related Practice Codes & Guidelines — The majority of the participants of the CIO scheme are bound by certain Codes of Conduct, Practice Standards and other operational and regulatory guidelines. Many of these have been developed and are monitored by industry associations and professional bodies, regulatory authorities and a range of other government departments.
- Recognition as an EDR scheme by the OAIC — Since 12 March 2014, CIO has been recognised by the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner (OAIC) as an external dispute resolution (EDR) scheme for the purpose of handling privacy and credit reporting complaints under the Privacy Act 1988.
- FAQ for FSPs — Frequently asked questions by financial services providers
- Memorandum of Understanding between CIO and FOS — The Financial Ombudsman Service Limited (FOS) and the Credit and Investments Ombudsman (CIO) are external dispute resolution schemes approved by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission. Both schemes are required to ensure that their complaints handling processes treat consumers and investors fairly and consistently across the credit and financial services sectors.
- Logo Use — FSPs are not permitted to use or display the CIO logo in their communications and branded publications, such as business cards, letterheads, emails, websites and other promotional materials.
- Search for Financial Services Providers