NAB drops overdrawn account fees

NAB has responded to customer complaints and the potential effect of the proposed unfair contract terms provisions of the Australian Consumer Law by announcing that on 1 October 2009 it will abolish the fees known by customers as overdrawn account fees on all NAB personal transaction and savings accounts. The fee is currently $30 per overdrawn event.

Under common law, to be valid a penalty imposed by a contract for a breach must be a genuine pre-estimate of the loss likely to be suffered by the party as a result of the breach, and should not be an arbitrary sum. However, under the unfair contract terms provision of the Trade Practices Amendment (Australian Consumer Law) Bill 2009 the relevant consideration is whether the term is unfair.

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