Friday 21 September 2018

Mistakes were made, compensation paid and everything's ok now, right?

Permanent TSB
Permanent TSB

Permanent TSB is to compensate a number of people who held mortgages with them because, according to the Central Bank, PTSB failed to inform the customers of the impact of transferring from a tracker mortgage (good) to a fixed-rate mortgage (crappy).

Not only were customers not adequately informed of the potential cost of switching, they were not clear that it was a path of no return - many only discovered that when they desperately attempted to switch back, only to be refused. In fact, the bank fought tooth-and-nail through the courts to prevent such reversals.

The bank says its mistakes impacted more than a thousand accounts, but the Central Bank found they were a 'key factor' in the loss of ownership of at least 22 properties.


In compensation, PTSB has said it will walk away from monies owed on the properties, and will pay €50,000 to owner-occupiers and €25,000 to buy-to-lets - a result likely to please no-one.

Few if any home-owners will feel that financial pay-offs eradicate the pain, stress and upheaval caused by having your home taken away, particularly if it was done incorrectly. The bank will undoubtedly feel it was ill-advised in the legal stance it took and has been left out of pocket.

The rest of us will look on slack-jawed when we realise that this happened between 2006 and 2012. In other words, most of it occurred during a period in which banks were meant to be super careful and hyper self-aware. A period in which this bank was taxpayer supported.

If there's one straw to be clutched at, it's that a resolution seems to have been achieved. So maybe this is finally the moment we can relax and say all the banks are now squeaky clean. Right? Right?

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