Hi, I'm Anthony Roberts, Minister for Fair Trading in NSW.
The Liberals and Nationals government made an election commitment to make moving into a retirement village easier and less stressful for retirees and their families.
From October first this year, all retirement villages across NSW will have to use the same streamlined standard contract. This is going to allow retirees to compare apples with apples and choose the village which best suits their needs.
It will also bring to the retirement village industry, a higher level of competition but also a much needed level of transparency when it comes to dealing with individuals and quite often complex legalistic arrangements when it comes it initial contracts.
David, can you please explain what the NSW new plain English contract is
It's a standard contract that will be used throughout NSW. Every contract from the first of October will require the prescribed form. Really it's something that the government set up as a pre-election promise that it's now delivered on. Really it's saying to consumers that these are the sorts of contracts that you have to use, it will be capable of being amended but essentially it's a prescribed document to be used across NSW in retirement villages.
What is your advice for prospective residents -- surely they should be seeking legal advice as well?
It's always ideal, and I think operators are keen to have residents who are going to be with them for many, many years, potentially, comfortable. So yes I think it's good for them to go and get legal advice when they're looking to enter into this contract.
Hopefully the plainer language style as opposed to what might be out there for certain other operators will make it easier for the residents to understand.
It has been drafted on the basis that it can be hopefully understood by residents but quite frankly I think it's advisable, particularly if there have been amendments made to it as there are allowed to be, that they do get legal advice.
David, thank you very much for your time and also thank you for the many hours that you and your colleagues at Minters have put in for the development of this, the first plain English contract for the retirement sector.
Thank you Chris