Mortgage Code and repossession

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Has anyone ever been successful in obtaining compensation against a lender for not complying with the mortgage code in respect of discussing financial difficulties? My lender refuses to reply to my proposals regarding my difficulties despite my reminders and has now instructed solicitors. I believe they are breaking the mortgage code. Am I being totally optimistic?

-- J P Lawton (jlawton.taxsolve@virgin.net), July 21, 2003

Answers

I haven't heard of any lender compensating a customer for the lender's failure to comply with the Mortgage Code.

It may be that lenders have been forced to compensate when found "liable" by regulators but, again, I can't think of any examples.

To understand why this is the case, you have to understand what the goal of the Mortgage Code is. It is not there to protect customers. It was drawn up by lenders to head off legislation from Parliament. By coming up with the Mortgage Code, lenders were able to say to MPs "Look, we recognise that we have little regulation so we are policing ourselves. Let's give self-policing a go before you MPs go spending tax payers' money to have the state police us."

So, don't rely on the Mortgage Code to protect or help you. It's a public relations exercise.

Some lenders are incredibly sensitive to MPs picking up the failure of lender self-regulation. I know of a case where the Abbey National backed off its shortfall claims against two repossessees because one of the repossessees was successfully getting Parliament to listen to what was going on.

The solution? Exercise what "rights" you have under the Mortgage Code, then go to to you MP with a well-written explanation of how the Code failed. Doing this may help bring the PR aspect of the Code into more focus. However it will not protect you from the failure of the code over your circumstances. However, nothing - except luck - will. Also, read the Do's and Don'ts section.

Good luck

-- Lee (repossession@home-repo.org), July 21, 2003.


Take a look at the MCCB Case Studies web page on: http://www.mortgagecode.org.uk/howwehelp/scenarios.asp? area=con&version=0

It doesn't specifically deal with what you are referring too, but it does show at least ONE case of compensation awarded by MCAS!! Here is a snippet:

"The Arbitrator calculated that due to poor advice regarding the re- mortgage and the ASU cover, the complainants had suffered financial losses of over 16,000, and the firm was ordered to pay that amount plus 1,000 (awarded for financial and emotional distress) to the Claimants."

Mark.

-- M Amos (idgroms@hotmail.com), July 22, 2003.


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