Thursday 21 June 2018

AIB 'fails to refund cash and lost trackers to thousands'

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Charlie Weston

Charlie Weston

Banking giant AIB is accused of failing to refund most of those who lost trackers from its subsidiary EBS.

Tracker case expert Padraic Kissane says EBS has up to 3,000 cases where it is failing to refund customers for losing trackers. Only a small number of customers had been restored to the low mortgage rate and refunded, he said.

It comes as the Central Bank confirmed that repossession cases have been halted at lenders where there is a suspicion that a tracker was taken from the customer when it should not have been.

Mr Kissane called on the Central Bank to put pressure on AIB and its subsidiary EBS to restore thousands more people to good-value trackers.

When people opted to fix they were not told, verbally or in writing, they would lose their trackers, he said. No more than 200 customers got trackers back, and were refunded, when they should never have lost the rate.

"EBS has not put any homeowners back on trackers since last July. I don't know why the Central Bank is allowing this.

"I would challenge EBS to show me one customer who was warned, in writing or verbally, that they would lose their tracker if they opted for a fixed rate," Mr Kissane said.

Redress

Asked about its failure to restore trackers to up to 3,000 EBS customers, a spokesman for the banking group insisted hundreds of EBS customers had been paid full redress and compensation.

"Significant progress in redressing and compensating customers has been made.

"The review is ongoing and is subject to continuous engagement with the Central Bank to ensure that it is conducted in line with the [tracker mortgage examination] framework."

The Central Bank said EBS was part of its tracker examination, and it continued to challenge all lenders to make sure they identify all those impacted.

Meanwhile, the Central Bank has confirmed that repossession proceedings by lenders against homeowners affected by the tracker scandal have stopped. "Lenders have ceased legal proceedings on customers impacted by tracker failures," it said.

It follows inspections of lenders to ensure they had stopped all legal proceedings that could result in borrowers losing properties as a result of tracker-related failures.

Trackers are the cheapest mortgage rate as they are set at a low percentage over the European Central Bank rate.

Irish Independent

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