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Practices of Irish Credit Bureau must be reviewed – Morgan

13 October, 2009

Sinn Féin Finance Spokesperson Arthur Morgan TD today called for a review of the practices of the Irish Credit Bureau. Deputy Morgan said he had a significant number of representations from people complaining that after they missed a small number of debt payments they were blacklisted on the Bureau’s records and will now be there for five years.

Deputy Morgan said:

“We are in the middle of a recession and people are struggling to make ends meet. For years, banks encouraged people to avail of the easy credit they had available to them and people over borrowed. In many cases, this wasn’t over-borrowing for life-style improvement, people had to borrow to buy homes and are now in huge negative equity and often out of a job and unable to make repayments.

“The government is bailing out banks. It is bailing out developers. It is not bailing out ordinary people. I have been contacted by a significant number of people who missed a small number of payments on mortgages and credit card bills and are now on the Irish Credit Bureau’s records for anything up to five years. They are blacklisted. Instead of blacklisting developers, this government is establishing NAMA to forward taxpayers’ money to developers to finish their projects.

“The government must order the practices of the Irish Credit Bureau to change. I will be putting an amendment of this nature to the NAMA bill when it comes before the Dáil. The ICB have to be more realistic in their evaluation process. They must incorporate in their examination of a debtor, their circumstances, whether they have made a genuine effort to make repayments, and their financial prospects in the current climate along with their future prospects.

“The government is putting a lot of time, effort and money to helping developers with their bad loans. It’s time they started helping ordinary people who need help the most.” ENDS

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