On 18 December 2019, the Pretoria High Court ruled that Shoprite had indeed lent money recklessly to its
customers. Before a lender can approve your loan, they must conduct an affordability assessment to establish
whether you can afford to repay the loan or not. Back in September 2017, the National Consumer Tribunal ruled
that Shoprite had on a number of instances failed to conduct proper affordability assessments. Shoprite had to
pay a fine of R 1 million and was ordered to appoint a debt counsellor to assist affected consumers
.
Shoprite appealed the ruling and their appeal was dismissed with costs.

The National Credit Act provides that a debt that was lent recklessly can be set aside which means that a consumer does not have to pay the debt. Shoprite was ordered to appoint a debt counsellor to suspend or restructure consumer’s obligations. So if you believe that you have been given credit recklessly by Shoprite or you have any questions to ask regarding this, lodge a complaint with the National Credit Regulator complaints@ncr.org.za

How Affordability assessments must be conducted
Before lending you money, credit providers have to:

  1. Obtain three months of pay slips; or the latest three months of bank statements reflecting three salary deposits; or the latest three months of documented proof of income; or latest financial statements.
  2. Ascertain the following:
    • Your gross income, using the documentation supplied by you.
    • All statutory deductions.
    • Your minimum living expenses – to establish the net income.
    • All your existing debt obligations, as may be reflected by the credit bureaus.
    • The net result is your discretionary income, which is the amount available to repay new debt. The monthly repayment on any new credit agreement must be less than this amount.