Banking & Mortgage Code Reviewsgreenspun.com : LUSENET : Repossession : One Thread
Here are my own responses to the banking and mortgage code reviews panel concerning the present banking and mortgage codes.
Send you own responses to these questions by the 28th of February to;
No moaning about the banking or mortgage code allowed if you don't send in your responses. OK?
Formal Objection; -----------------
I wish to hereby make a formal complaint and objection about the presence of Abbey National on the Banking and Mortgage Code review panel.
I consider the presence of Abbey National on the panel to be totally unacceptable and objectionable.
They are, in my personal opinion, the very worst offenders of the codes and the DPA.
1, Is the consultation process of drawing them up satisfactory?
The process itself is satisfactory but I am very concerned that the panel has so few (none as far as I can see) consumers on the panel in the form of individuals who have a personal interest in the codes based on their own experiences.
And, as already stated I personally object most strongly that Abbey National is on the panel at all.
Representatives from consumer protest groups should be on the panel.
Banking customer protest groups. Mortgage victims Protest groups. (Such as the Mortgage Shortfall Support Group of which I am proud to be a member) Endowment insurance protest groups.
This list of such groups is endless but it appears that the panel only consists of the usual Consumer Groups and the banks/insurance companies themselves. Where is your differing opinion?
2, Do they cover all the issues that they should cover?
I believe that the codes should contain clear statements regarding liability and compensation.
The codes must be expanded in this respect.
It is just not good enough to state that the process is to then go off to the Ombudsman. The consumer should have the right at every stage to decide that they will accept stated scales of compensation and expedite matters.
Code violations totals should be published and historical data concerning previous violations by all banks and insurance companies, cross-referenced and tabulated, should be available to consumers.
3, Are they fully complied with by the industry?
No they are not. The banks and insurance companies all consider the codes as simply silly and without any teeth. And they are right to do so. 4, Are they monitored and enforced effectively.
No they are not. If a violation occurs then the code compliance board appears to have a chat with the bank about it. The consumer is not informed of the result of the “chat” nor does the investigation, if there is even an investigation at all, offer the consumer any form of compensation.
Keep in mind that the public are being sold financial products and services with the assurance that banks adhere to the codes, which they obviously don’t.
(I will personally be testing this concept in court one day against Abbey National because this is clearly a contract and Abbey National has broken it in many respects. Once I do this then everybody is going to do it)
5, Do they offer adequate redress for legitimate grievances
No. The codes specifically offer no redress at all. In my experience the present codes as they stand are a waste of time in this respect.
6, Could customers be better informed about what their rights are?
Yes but the present codes do not offer the consumer any protection anyway. The consumer has little or no right of redress and their “Rights” are highly questionable.
7, Do customers need more information or more clearly presented information?
The present code booklets are a sham. There is a lot of information but the final pages state that the consumer has no right of redress if anything goes wrong or is amiss apart from complaining. Therefore I think if the codes are not changed the very first statement in the code booklet should be an instruction to not bother reading it. What’s the point of having a set of rules that are being ignored and which have no penalties at all?
-- to frightend to say (firstname.lastname@example.org), February 13, 2001
I think my main criticisms of the Mortgage Code are that (a) is it only voluntary; and (b) it covers new and existing mortgage business, not 'old' business eg lenders chasing for ancient and alleged mortgage shortfall 'debts'. The sections which might be thought to apply, eg 1.1, 'we promise we will act fairly and reasonably in all our dealings with you' seem to fly out of the window as far as ex borrowers are concerned. And what about the section about keeping ex borrowers' personal data confidential? The lenders don't seem to have any trouble passing personal details on to debt collecting firms (including people's work telephone numbers) and lawyers, do they, when it suits them. You only have to read some of the case studies on this web site to see that the Mortgage Code is not being adhered to in large numbers of 'shortfall cases'.
-- Eleanor Scott (email@example.com), February 17, 2001.