A judge has told a couple they have two weeks in which to pay almost €40,000 in rent arrears, after a court heard the money is currently in a Swiss bank account.
The civil case was heard in Bandon District Court, where landlord Cornelius Reynolds, of Kinsale, Co Cork, was seeking an order that would see him secure vacant possession of his property at 4 Burke’s Lane, St John’s Hill in the town, as well as recovery of the rent arrears.
The court heard that respondent Margaret Carr and her husband, Joseph, have been living at the property but have not paid rent there since December 2017.
Judge James McNulty heard that arrears of some €38,000 have built up, while Mr Carr said he intended to pay the landlord some €40,000 to take into account related fees associated with the property.
Solicitor Donna O’Driscoll for Mr Reynolds said she was seeking an order that would affirm an earlier order made by the Residential Tenancies Board, providing for payment of the rent arrears and vacant possession of the property. The matter had previously been before the court on June 28, when Mr Reynolds had been told payment was imminent.
However, by July 4, no money had been paid. Mr Carr said it was due to difficulties in having the money transferred from a Swiss bank account to his Irish account so he could forward the payment.
“It is a matter of days away,” he said. “The funds are in a Swiss account.” Ms O’Driscoll said her client believed Mr Carr was genuine but Mr Reynolds had been waiting a considerable time for payment, during which time he had paid property tax and other payments on the property.
Mr Carr said he had been in regular contact with the Swiss bank to have the funds released, admitting: “It is an unconscionably long time. €40,000 is really what I want to get him. Cash is the only answer to the question.”
Judge McNulty adjourned for two weeks and said: “If the money promised had not been paid, the order will be made”. Mr Carr said he had been looking at alternative lodgings and the judge said he should “expedite that”.