Pro Bono group “New Beginning” to represent defendants in repossession cases

Tagged in: Debt, Pro Bono

A pro bono group, "New Beginning" has been set up. The group, made up of lawyers, business people and concerned citizens, was launched on 31 October 2010 with the intention of representing defendants in repossession cases as well as mounting test cases ito establish whether lending institutions owe a duty of care to borrowers, and if so whether such a duty was breached.

Co-founder of the pro bono group, Ross Martin SC wrote a piece in the Irish Times days before the group was launched, exploring the potential tort of reckless lending. He referred to the Consumer Protection Code issued by the Financial Regulator in 2006, which outlines that lenders must ensure that in all its customer dealings, "it acts honestly, fairly and professionally in the best interests of its customers and the integrity of the market; and acts with due skill, care and diligence in the best interests of its customers". This movement towards a relationship "akin to that between professional advisers and their clients" results in the question as to whether the law of negligence can be applied and whether a duty of care is owed to the borrower.

This pro bono group aims to explore such issues, with the hope that the test cases may result in the banks taking their share of the blame.

Those involved in "New Beginning" are working on a voluntary basis and call for mortgage holders in difficulty to submit their files for review. New Beginning is also calling for any professional volunteers who are willing to give time and advice to contact them.

For more information on the group please click here, or phone 01 871 9499.

Please click here to see a FLAC press release calling for homeowners' needs to be prioritised.