A very significant Judgement stopping Mars Capital and as a result, other so called Vulture Funds from continuing repossession cases started by the original owners of loans (in this particular case Irish Nationwide BS before the loans were sold).
I am amazed on how silent the media has been on this matter since it is so significant for so many people who were potentially facing homelessness.
The judge has ruled that Mars Capital is not allowed to substitute itself for the original lender in repossession cases started before 14th October 2014. In other words, if a repossession case was started prior to 14th October 2014 for a loan that is now owned by Mars Capital or any other Vulture Fund it is likely that that case will be rejected by the court and will have to be started all over again at circuit court level.
Judge McDermott held that the court could not be satisfied that all of the information contained in the files could be considered to be correct and that each case will have to be heard separately. The full judgement is contained here for anyone with the interest and time to read it.
So what does this mean?
- For The Vulture Funds
For the Vulture funds it means that for every case which they wish to take repossession proceedings against they have to start that process all over again if the proceedings were started by the previous lender. In this case alone there are 583 cases which have been stopped and will have to be restarted. This going to be a very costly and time consuming process for Mars and the other funds who will find themselves in similar positions.
- For The Borrower
For the borrower it will create some opportunities which did not seem likely prior to the judgement. Firstly, it will mean that anyone under threat of losing their home will now have extra time before this happens will be at least 12 months. Secondly, if the borrower is inclined to negotiate with the new lender the lender may be more inclined to either write down some of the debt and/or provide the borrower with a cash incentive to leave the property voluntarily! This will save both time and legal cost for the new lender.
If you or anyone you know is facing repossession of a property by a vulture fund they should immediately confirm when the proceedings were started and by whom. If they were started by the original lender, then the case will have to be stopped. DO NOT rely on the lender to inform you of this.
Once you have established your case needs to restarted you should contact the vulture fund to discuss a renegotiation. Remember the funds are facing much higher legal fees and much longer time to get their money back. Both of which they are always keen to avoid!
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