Saturday 23 September 2017

James Fitzsimons: When the loophole closes, we must find help for defaulters

There are only a few solutions that actually work, and banks aren't offering them

There is a legal loophole that is preventing banks from repossessing homes. The Government has promised to close it, but not before the personal insolvency legislation is in place

. There have been more than 1,300 repossessions since the Central Bank started to compile figures. Who can say whether the number would have been much higher if the law was different.

The High Court Judge Ms Justice Elizabeth Dunne identified the loophole, in 2011, in what has become known as the Gunn Case. The banks normally sought repossession for registered land under Section 62(7) of the Registration of Title Act 1964. The act was repealed by the Land Conveyancing Act 2009, but only covers mortgages entered into from December 1, 2009. The 1964 act covers earlier mortgages, but that has been repealed.

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