The CBI on 24 June 2015 reported on recent inspections focusing on lender compliance with the Code of Conduct on Mortgage Arrears ("CCMA").
The CBI acknowledged that, in the main, lenders have implemented processes required by the CCMA. Some lenders have gone beyond the minimum requirements of the CCMA. However, the CBI observed a number of weaknesses showing that CCMA is not being fully complied with. These were:
Undue and significant delays in assessing cases in the Mortgage Arrears Resolution Process (i.e. the process by which defaulting borrowers are dealt with by the lender in accordance with the terms of the CCMA). Poor communications with borrowers particularly with regard to the assessment by lenders' arrears support unit of defaulting borrowers. Failure to meet CCMA timelines - particularly regarding issuing warnings, the classification of borrowers as "not co-operating" and unsolicited personal visits. Difficulties in maintaining effective communication where a borrower has appointed a third party. Additional concerns with regard to practices that the CBI considered went against the letter and spirit of the CCMA, noting that this undermined consumer protection. Conclusion
Lenders appear to have in place appropriate systems but some do not to follow these systematically or to keep a record of compliance with those procedures.
Issues Arising Post-Inspection
The CBI has issued post inspection letters to each of the seven lenders inspected and has imposed "Risk Mitigation Programmes" where significant failings were found.
For those who were not the subject of inspections, the CBI requires the following specific...