CALLS TO CREDIT OFFICE SLOW BUT STEADY
The new Credit Review Office has dealt with 170 calls from businesses which believe that banks have unfairly rejected their loan applications. The office’s first quarterly update will go to Minister for Finance Brian Lenihan in the coming weeks, giving more details on trends in complaints raised by disgruntled bank business customers.
The Credit Review Office (CRO) was set up in April to evaluate decisions on loans of less than €250,000 – it has given three formal opinions to date and around 10 cases are going through the full review process. Attempts are being made to resolve other cases without going to a formal review. The Sunday Business Post quoted John Trethowan, the head of the CRO, as saying that reaction from business had been “slow but steady” and that other cases were in the pipeline.
It takes about three weeks for an opinion to be given by the office – its decisions are not binding – and only banks involved in the National Asset Management Agency are covered by the scheme. The office can deal only with applications that have been turned down since the beginning of April and the decisions must go through the banks’ internal appeals process first.