Business Irish

Monday 5 December 2016

Borrower can't sue bank in negligence claim, judge rules

Tim Healy

Published 29/04/2016 | 02:30

KBC secured summary judgment last December for €6.2m against Mr Osborne. Photo: Getty Images
KBC secured summary judgment last December for €6.2m against Mr Osborne. Photo: Getty Images

A local businessman who owes KBC more than €6.2m cannot pursue an action alleging the bank engaged in negligent lending, the Commercial Court has ruled.

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There is no cause of action here for reckless or negligent lending, Mr Justice Brian McGovern said.

Gorey, Co Wexford-based James Osborne had no reasonable cause of action against KBC, his proceedings were "frivolous and vexatious", an abuse of process in effectively attacking a previous High Court decision against him, and out of time, the judge found. The action must be dismissed, Mr Justice McGovern ruled.

KBC secured summary judgment last December for €6.2m against Mr Osborne, Fort Road, Gorey, arising from loans linked to and secured on Gorey Retail Park in Co Wexford, after the High Court found he had no arguable defence to its claim. The bank has appointed receivers over the park where around 400 people were employed.

In February 2016, Mr Osborne initiated proceedings against KBC and other parties alleging negligence, breach of statutory duty and breach of contract in relation to the advancing of funds. Around €7m was advanced between 2002 and 2004 and the facilities were restructured in 2009.

He abandoned his claims against the other parties but sought to pursue claims against KBC alleging it completed a loan facility without taking appropriate steps to check whether there was a fire safety certificate on the underlying property.

KBC applied to have his case struck out on grounds including it demonstrated no cause of action.

Mr Justice Brian McGovern granted the bank's application yesterday.

Irish Independent

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