Banks claim that tracker scandal cases fall outside of time limit
Hundreds of homeowners who believe they were caught up in the tracker mortgage scandal may have left it too late to get compensation, if the banks involved get their way.
According to RTÉ, Financial Services Ombudsman Ger Deering has raised concerns that some of the banks involved in the tracker mortgage scandal are now claiming that complaints fall outside the six-year legal window.
Mr Deering revealed that 103 of 1,141 complaints he received from mortgage holders are currently being assessed as to whether they fall outside the statutory time limit. He revealed there may be even more cases.
“Based on our current experience, I believe that as we progress additional complaints to investigation, there will be more complaints where the statutory time limits will be an issue,” he told RTÉ.
“My best estimate at this stage is that a time limit assessment will most likely be required on over 400 of those complaints.
“Legislation setting out the time limits is so complicated,” he said, adding that “this office in some instances spends at least as much time dealing with assessments relating to time limits as it would in conducting a full formal investigation of the merits of that same complaint”.
Mr Deering said some banks were “rigorously challenging the jurisdiction of this office to deal with complaints where there is a question in relation to whether the complaint was made outside the time limits”.
This is despite an agreement not to raise the issue of statutes of limitations as a defence as part of an agreement between institutions and the Central Bank.
Fianna Fáil TD Michael McGrath said: “Whatever banks are adopting this approach of invoking the time limit and trying to prevent those cases being dealt with, they really need to change.”
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