Thursday 18 January 2018

Mother of nine secures injunction halting sale of her family home

(Stock picture)
(Stock picture)

Aodhan O Faolain

A MOTHER-OF-NINE has secured a temporary High Court injunction halting the sale of her family home.

Patricia McLeish told the High Court she has been living in rented accommodation after she and her family had to leave their home at Coolisteigure, Clonlara in Co Clare after it was repossessed by Bank of Ireland.

The property, she said, is due to be sold at auction.

She said that in 2004  a repossession order was made in respect of her home in favour of BOI  by Clare Circuit Court.

She claims that after 12 years of postponements the order was not executed until October of last year.

IR£50,000 was borrowed from BOI to acquire the property in the 1990s.

However, arrears on mortgage repayments built up and €139,000 remains outstanding on the mortgage, she told the court.

However, Ms McLeish claims that the 2005 repossession order is flawed and invalid and has launched proceedings aimed at having that order set aside.  

As a result she has brought proceedings against Bank of Ireland Mortgage Bank, the Country Registrar for  Clare, as well as Ireland and the Attorney General.

She has also sought an injunction halting the auction and preventing the the sale of the family home pending the outcome of her case.

At the High Court on Tuesday Mr Justice Donald Binchy granted Ms McLeish of Aughboy, Clonlara a temporary or interim injunction preventing any offers from being accepted on the property.

The Judge said the injunction did not mean the auction could not proceed, only that no offers could be accepted on the property.

The injunction was granted on an ex-parte basis, where there was only one party present in court.

The Judge said he was satisfied at this stage that Ms McLeish, who is not represented by solicitor or barrister in the action, had raised a fair issue to be tried.

The Judge, who strongly suggested to Ms McLeish that she try and obtain legal advice, adjourned the case for a period of two weeks. 

The court heard that Ms McLeish's action is brought on grounds including that the 2004 repossession order was granted by a County Registrar in 2004 who has no power to grant such an order, and the Circuit Court had no jurisdiction to hear the case.

She also claims that her rights as an EU Citizen were breached when the courts failed to recognised the unfair terms of her contract with Bank of Ireland.

She further claims that the repossession order was granted on the basis her property was rateable.

However The Court of Appeal has ruled that the Circuit Court lacks jurisdiction to hear repossession cases where the property is defined as not rateable, as hers was in 2004, within the meaning of the Valuation Act 2001

Ms McLeish, a homemaker who is estranged from her husband said that seven of her children are under the age of 18 years. She said that she and her children have been living in rented accommodation for the last number of weeks. 

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