Law firm Slater and Gordon has filed the first of its superannuation class action proceedings against the Commonwealth Bank.
The ‘Get Your Super Back’ class action was announced by Slater and Gordon on September 11 off the back of the royal commission’s public hearings into superannuation, and could be the largest class action undertaken in the country’s history.
“Slater and Gordon will take on the banks on behalf of millions of Australians whose retirement savings may have been gouged by bank-owned super funds lining their pockets,” the firm said at the time.
The action filed in the Federal Court on Wednesday against the Commonwealth Bank and its wealth management group, Colonial First State, could exceed $100 million for hundreds of thousands of superannuation members, according to the law firm.
The ‘Get Your Super Back’ action will allege Colonial First State invested the retirement savings of its members with its parent bank, the CBA, where it received uncompetitive bank interest rates.
“We will allege that by dumping members’ super with its parent bank, the CBA, Colonial First State failed to obtain the most competitive interest rate available for its members invested in cash-only investment options and balanced options where there is a cash component,” Slater and Gordon Head of Class Actions Ben Hardwick said on Wednesday.
Lead plaintiff Keith Kayler-Thomson said he was “angry” the bank had paid interest rates below the federal cash rate of 1.5 per cent, adding that if he were the one who owed the bank money that they “wouldn’t hesitate to force [him] to pay it back”.
“These are my retirement savings we’re talking about. I assumed that a big institution like Colonial could be trusted to act ethically and within the law,” Mr Kayler-Thomson said.
The same firm also announced a shareholder class action against NAB on September 27 over revelations made during the royal commission that the bank had sold insurance policies that were “of minimal value to many customers”.
The New Daily is owned by Industry Super Holdings.
– with AAP