Time to ‘tweak’ law

IT IS reassuring and appropriate that Finance Minister Michael Noonan acknowledged yesterday that recently enacted insolvency legislation may have to be “tweaked”.

Speaking in Limerick, Mr Noonan reiterated that the Government is “very conscious of the issue and it’s the policy of the Government not to have homes repossessed”.

His intervention may be of little immediate comfort to those involved in the 219 repossession cases listed before the Circuit Court in Limerick yesterday, but it may offer some sort of hope to those involved in a difficult and unbalanced relationship with their mortgage provider.

Earlier this week, Fianna Fáil finance spokesman Michael McGrath proposed legislation that would curb the banks’ absolute veto in restructuring mortgages. A similar proposal has come from Labour TD Willie Penrose.

No one expects debt to be written off in any but the most exceptional circumstances, but no one expect the banks to hold the whip hand for ever either. It is time the legislation was “tweaked” to replace fear with even a sliver of hope.


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