Eps003 – Ombudsman & Credit Unions with Michelle O’Donoghue of RBK Chartered Accountants

In the ombudsman’s recently published decisions there were two cases of particular interest to credit unions.

Safeguards on a junior account

The Ombudsman upheld the complaint and directed the bank to reimburse the account with all of the withdrawals which were permitted contrary to the mandate. Credit Unions should be clear and should ensure that parents and guardians are also clear that the funds in the account of a minor are for the sole use of the minor and cannot be accessed by a third part. Mandates on these accounts should be very carefully applied

Check out Michelle’s article for more information: https://www.rbk.ie/news/childrens-accounts-credit-unions-how-to-avoid-an-expensive-claim

Reduction in Life Savings cover

Many credit unions have already reduced life savings cover to reduce the costs of free benefits. While it was never in doubt that a credit union had the authority to do this it is comforting to know that there is a legally binding decision around this. Key points to note for credit unions making these changes are:

  • Clear communication with members in accordance with consumer protection best practice
  • Review of all documentation to ensure that members are fully aware of the terms and conditions which apply and also that changes can be made by the board at any time

Michelle’s Links:

RBK: https://www.rbk.ie

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/michelleodonoghue/

Eps002 – Interview with Lorraine Corcoran, Chair of the Credit Union Advisory Council

Since 2015 Lorraine Corcoran has been heavily involved in Credit Unions through her work delivering the “It makes sense loan” through the personal micro-credit scheme.

Lorraine is currently the chair of the Credit Union Advisory Council (CUAC) where her contributions are invaluable as Credit Unions try to pave a positive way forward.

Having worked with Bank of Ireland for 20 years Lorraine changed her career following the completion of a master’s and now focuses on ensuring the corporate world understands and plays its part in the social economy.

About the Personal Micro-Credit Scheme:

The initiative is the response from credit unions and a number of stakeholders to the growing money lender problem in Ireland. All of these stakeholders are committed to putting a sustainable low-cost credit solution in place for those who rely on social welfare.

The initiative is backed by numerous stakeholders committed to its success:
• Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection
• Department of Finance
• Central Bank: Registry of Credit Unions (RCU)
• Irish League of Credit Unions (ILCU)
• Individual credit unions
• An Post
• Social Finance Foundation
• Citizens Information Board
• St Vincent de Paul (representing NGOs)

Lorraine’s Links:

Afanite: https://www.afanite.com/

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/lorrainecorcoran/

It Makes Sense: https://itmakessenseloan.ie/

CUAC: https://www.gov.ie/en/publication/92dc08-credit-union-advisory-committee-cuac/

Eps001 – Interview with Finbarr O’Shea, Bantry Credit Union

I’m delighted to share an interview with Finbarr O’Shea from Bantry Credit Union. 

Finbarr reached out to me as part of my League board election campaign with a number of questions and in particular my approach to rural Credit Unions given that I’m the CEO of a Dublin-based Credit Union. 

We have a great discussion covering a number of important topics such as:

  • the challenge of share caps, in particular for older members;
  • social housing and the opportunity it presents for Credit Unions
  • fragmentation, where I give an alternative view

I hope you enjoy the interview and if you have any questions for me please send me an email or use the contact page.

Eps000 – Podcast Introduction

In my podcast introduction, I chat with Vivienne Keavey, CEO of RTE Credit Union about my podcast and what it is all about.

Introducing Credit Union Discussions Podcast

I’m delighted to launch this podcast aimed at credit union volunteers and professinals. My hope is to bring the voices of people both inside and outside of the credit union movement.

The podcast will be both informative and educational keeping up to date with topical issues as they arise.

If you would like to participate or have an idea for a good show topic or speaker please contact me