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Get your money back – repossess the bank

Only in America you may say but what a delightful story this is. It brings into focus the utter incompetence of the bank in question and warms the cockles of the heart. It also says that when the bank owes you money you should go for it with all guns blazing, because that’s what they would do were the boot on the other foot.

So you buy your dream home, spend a few quid on it and have your little palace. Then, unexpectedly, the banks go into melt down, your country goes into recession and you lose your job – the next thing you know, you can’t pay your mortgage and are facing repossession. And so it seemed to some cock bank in America which commenced possession proceedings against a retired policeman and his Mrs who had bought a property in  Florida – except they bought it with cash and didn’t have a mortgage at all. But that little detail didn’t stop the Bank of America commencing proceedings which were very easily, and not surprisingly, warded off.

But, for the bank, this was not the end of the matter. You see, the innocent couple had paid a lawyer the equivalent of around £1,500 to defend the proceedings – quite rightly they asked the bank to pay this. When the bank did not pay the couple went to court, which ordered the bank to pay the costs. After telephone calls and letters the bank still didn’t pay up and so the couple took the next logical step and obtained a foreclosure order. Visualise the scene of a lawyer, two policemen and a removals van. They duly turned up at the bank’s premises and started to collect furniture, computers and anything else they could lay their hands on – even cash from the tills.

Apparently, it then took the bank around one hour to raise a cheque for around £3,500 to repay the bills the couple had incurred in chasing them and exercising their rights under the law. The excuse was that the instructions had gone out to the bank’s lawyer who was no longer in business. And if you believe that, you believe anything.

The way we see it is this:

  • In our opinion, the bank gravely cocked up in initiating proceedings against borrowers who were not borrowers at all.
  • It compounded this by not repaying the costs initially and probably arrogantly thought that the couple would not seek to enforce its rights.
  • When the bank was ordered to pay the couple’s costs, it compounded the errors again, by not paying. It would have us believe that an instruction was sent to a lawyer that had gone out of business and yet after several letters and telephone calls it clearly did not investigate what was going on – in the alternative, the story about the lawyer being out of business is verbiage.
  • They came up with their own cheque when they had to, not through some lawyer and it only took them an hour to do it. The couple had waited five months.
  • Or could it be that, like many a large organisation, they become so big that they are but lumbering Jurassic dinosaurs where the only cure is either extinction or predation.

Justice was probably never so sweet.

You see it’s just like it is over here – they can play all the sycophantic adverts they like but this bunch of bankers is never going to persuade us that they can remember who the customer is. Sadly, it took a credit crunch and billions of pounds of taxpayers money to make most folk realise. After twenty years in the trade, yours truly knew this all along.

After all, why is the word banker so conveniently cockney rhyming slang?

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