28 Day Re-possession Order

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Can anyone give me any advice regarding appealing against a 28 day re-possession order?


In 1989 I signed a commercial mortgage in favour of National Westminster Bank plc, to secure a #5,000 overdraft for my husband's limited Company, giving the Bank a charge over our joint property, which was valued around #55,000.

From that time until 1996 the Company's overdraft rose to #65,000, along with a business development loan in 1994 for #50,000. I had no knowledge of the Company borrowings, and as far as I am aware, I was not informed of such by the Bank.

I have subsequently learned from my husband that in July 1996 the Company was in negotiation with the Bank to increase its facility from #65,000 to #135,000. The #135,000 was decided but an offer of #100,000 was verbally offered. At the time of the verbal offer of #100,00, my husband was informed by an Officer of the Bank that the Bank had changed its policy of unlimited guarantees and that his guarantee was to be sealed at #70,000. I would like to point out that both the #100,000 facility and #70,000 limit were only verbal and never confirmed in writing, although witnessed by three employees of the Company and our local Bank Manager.

Unfortunately the Company was forced to close in November 1996.

We have over the past two and a half years been corresponding with the Bank in an effort to satisfy our indebtedness. They have agreed on various occassions to accept substantial amounts of what their perception is of what is due to them. But up until now we have been unable to raise these amounts through re-mortgaging. (I would like to point out that due to various h.p. agreements by husband signed on behalf of his Company that he was made a bankrupt in November 1997). However I have now been offered a provisional re-mortgage in my own name.

In June this year the Bank requested that their Valuer came round the property and it was subsequently valued at some #155,000. They gave us the option of putting it on the market voluntarily or they would do so themselves. We consequently decided to do so ourselves, but also to continue to explore the possibility of re-mortgaging in my sole name.

However, on the 7th September 1997 we received a letter from the Bank's Solicitors stating and I quote "We have been instructed to commence possession proceedings until we receive within the next 10 days confirmation that the property has been voluntarily placed upon the market". We replied accordinly on the 10th September advising them of the Estate Agents and the contact there. We also asked the Bank itself on the 13th July if they had any objections to us using the Estate Agents they had sent to value the property and they replied that they had no such objections. In view of all this we were very surprised to receive a summons for re-possession on the 15th October. My husband rang the Solicitors for the Bank, asking whey they had done this when we had resposnded to their request as per their letter of the 7th and he was told that our letter was insufficient for their purposes. He then ask why we had not been informed that this was the case and they admitted that this was an error on their part.

This resulted in my husband attending Court on the 19th November, the result being the 28 day re-possession order.

My questions are

Does any one have any similar experience of this, and if so, have you any advice you can offer

Does the Bank have a legal obligation to keep me informed of the Company's borrowings

Is their a ceiling on the amount of money covered by a joint and several guarantee

Does anyone know of a time limit that may exist regarding a joint and several guarantee

Percentage wise, has anyone any experience of what the Bank might accept against our indebtedness.

Any advice you can give would be very greatly appreciated.

-- Jane Kelsall (teamquiz@aol.com), November 20, 1999

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