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UK|Banking|Litigation|Report|Introduction

 

Banks and bankers no longer enjoy the status of being automatically trusted as professionals.

That is a statement of fact, proved (even more) during 2021 but also right up to the date of this updated page by the huge amount of Litigation being conducted against Banks.

Many millions are at stake and Litigation Funding is now playing it's part for the larger businesses who can afford to pay the premium for those insurances.

However, there are a great many business bank customers or ex customers, who cannot pay large fees and large premiums for Litigation Insurance.

That inevitably means many bank customers are attempting to do DIY Litigation.

But, DIY Litigation can be very dangerous for the bank customer and their own case.

Bank customers will be emotive. Then their verbal complaints or inaccurate facts or case law with ill judged statements or 'pleadings' can easily be manipulated by banks to strengthen the Bank's claim.

We have also seen from many enquiries, how bank customer's verbose complaint/s can then also lose the bank customer defences which were present before the bank customer spoke to or wrote to the Bank with poorly constructed complaints.

From the enquiries we receive we have seen some very ill prepared 'pleadings' from bank customers who were seeking help.

IBAS are not funded by banks or Government and never have been.

IBAS is a membership organization which is funded by membership and by donation. Protecting families and the family home is a major priority for IBAS when we offer membership.

We also require specific and accurate facts to properly advise and represent our members.

A great deal of time and effort is spent on behalf of those we represent, obtaining 'background' information and also investigating matters in depth - which we know profit motivated organisations just would not do.

What IBAS offers is a very effective, low cost, tailored membership which provides direct assistance.

IBAS assistance and advice has kept many in their homes and kept their families together.

Otherwise, those families may have been destroyed.

I do not say that lightly, especially at this time of the year and whilst Covid 19 continues to disrupt all our lives.

IBAS help has been available since 1992 for business bank customers.

An email to IBAS is completely confidential and requires so little - just your time.

But, that email could save your home, your assets and your family.

If you are looking for someone you can actually trust for your Business Banking issue, complaint or dispute and for them to provide their experience to help you - then look no further.

Eddy Weatherill IBAS ceo

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Bookmark this page - IBAS is very experienced and 'up to date' in UK Business Banking matters including litigation assistance

 

 

In 2002 IBAS had already obtained in excess of £21 million in refunds, write-offs and write-down of bank debt from successful investigations of UK Business Banking Disputes and complaints since 1992.

 

 

How can we help you? - email us your 'situation'

 

 

IBAS investigate Directors Personal Guarantee Disputes and Debt Claims and can help defend bank legal claims on directors personal guarantee debt claims and help avoid personal guarantee judgment

 

If you truly believe you have a legitimate complaint against your lender in your business banking dispute or a business banking account debt dispute - IBAS knowledge and our bank information from current and historical case work is essential as we know the many banking litigation 'tricks' that banks will use to defeat customer claims.

 

 

TM in his testimonial for IBAS stated

 

This is a battle that we have won, which could quite easily have been lost had I not joined IBAS.

I would recommend them to absolutely everybody

- TM Testimonial

 

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Came across this piece recently:

 

How optimism bias shapes our decisions and futures [Jessica Mudditt, BBC News, 29 April 2021]

Gina Vangelis life has not been easy. As a child, she was bullied; as an adult, she faced abuse, along with the breakdown of two marriages and recurring health problems including being hit by a truck in 2016. Last year, Covid-19 wiped out the 52-year-olds livelihood as a pastry chef.

By her own admission, Vangeli looks on the bright side of life. She tends to overestimate the likelihood of positive events happening to her, and subsequently underestimate potentially negative ones.

This is known as optimism bias, something that 80% of the global population possess to some degree. Thinking positively is an evolutionary hallmark, because it facilitates envisioning what is possible, allowing us to be courageous and innovative.

Levels of optimism bias vary according to our mental state and current circumstances, and there are ways to temper or increase it.

Thats good, because a surfeit of optimism can lead to underestimating risk. Understanding where you sit on the optimism spectrum can help you adjust for your bias and maybe even make better choices.

Thought this was an interesting article as it demonstrates why exactly LIPs can & do get so carried away in Banking Litigation thinking they have thought everything through (based on what they know and their experience) when unfortunately many just do not have the depth of experience necessary to make the best choices - therefore they over estimate their own position and miss the warning signs.

 

Better to have IBAS 'in your corner' to bounce ideas off - email IBAS for help

 

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In our experience, avoiding litigation is even more important now, with so many attempting to defend as 'Litigants in Person' (LIP's) - they will face a 'Banking Litigation Team' - sometimes totalling up to 15 and all working 24/7 if the case reaches court - that 'Team' will not only have the bank's Recovery Team but also Top 10 solicitors advising on strategy along with leading barristers and even QC's (if the case is important to the bank). The 'fire power' used by the bank is very costly and intended to intimidate.

Whilst the 'Banking Litigation Team' has not changed in structure or indeed in tactics since our UK Banking Litigation Report was first published (in the Sunday Times in 1997) -and when even obtaining a solicitor 'willing' to 'act' on a case against a bank was almost impossible to find - what has changed is the volume of 'Litigants in Person' attempting to defend against a bank. Many with low resources and very few funded by litigation insurances.

If the bank is already moving toward litigation against the customer there will be no choice as the bank customer has no 'control' - and a bank's claim, if successful, may well cost the business banking customer their family home.

IBAS advise and directly assist directors, partners, sole proprietors who were business banking customers and now facing business banking debt dispute claims by Bank Litigation.

IBAS is the only non-profit organisation which will help and provide practical assistance for business banking customer defending bank debt claim disputes from bank litigation or acting as Litigants in Person.

 

 

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I'm so pleased to achieve this exceptional settlement.

Thank you again for all your guidance and advice.

I know I could not have done it without IBAS investigating the EFG issues in depth

and your diligence in making me gather the fine details.

 

- CW Testimonial

 

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Testimonial:

 

'Thanks for firstly remotely assessing my bank debt claim complaint/s and then saving me time and money by advising me exactly how to achieve a successful outcome, without solicitors being involved.

Your remote working and knowledge based systems are remarkable.

IBAS has saved me many thousands of pounds by obtaining all the facts, then advising me 'safely' on an effective resolution (without wasteful or ineffective 'face to face' meetings in the current Covid 19 'climate').

Brilliant result all round and very safe and cost effective for me.

Carry on your good work'

 

- AS Testimonial

 

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'I found IBAS to be Impressive & professional with no nonsense.

I followed IBAS strategy totally and the result was spectacular.

Thanks for putting my life back on track and saving me a bucket load of money

I cannot thank you enough.

I would now start with IBAS and ignore all the others

who are 'selling' an imitation of these guys but without IBAS knowledge!

 

- AT Testimonial

 

 

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We've been asked many times: does or will IBAS help business bank customers with bank litigation?

The answer is YES, IBAS does help business bank customers with their bank litigation - we have done so for many years.

We gather information which we know is necessary to assess legal arguments as soon after a bank demand as possible and well before litigation commences.
 

Our experience is that laying the groundwork' for a successful litigation starts early by preserving defences which then exist, ready if or when required.

 
Bank customers attempting DIY 'defending' or making complaints to their bank is often the very point where they start to lose their 'case' - as the bank draws further information from them.

That's because Banks will ' bully' in a number of ways to destroy the customer's case.

Therefore, the earlier defence 'preservation' starts the better the chance of success.

That preservation should start at Demand or even earlier if the customer has already made a written complaint to their Bank.

Banks do not 'play fair', they are capable of many underhand tactics - particularly if they see your case as a potential threat to the bank.

Banks will destabilize any threat where possible and they start at the first point of contact - the customer.

 

 

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IBAS has assisted in many cases which have been won by our members after litigation in the County Court, High Court and the Court of Appeal - IBAS experience is essential for any business banking customer in a debt claim or dispute with a bank.

 

Diminish-Defend-Defeat-UK-Business-Banking-Debt-Demand-Claim

 

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IBAS UK Banking Litigation Report was first published in 1997. At that time our report evidenced the volume of banking cases which were legally aided (84%) and we did not have a figure for LIPs (Litigant in Person).

Since that date driven by successive Government's desire to cut legal costs, legal aid has all but disappeared for the majority facing business bank claims for debt repayment.

 

 

UK Banking Litigation Report

 

Bank customers facing litigation - introduction

IBAS Report on Bank Customers in Litigation - This report was compiled from 1200 questionnaires we sent to individuals known to have been involved in litigation in October 1996 - from the completed responses the report was then completed in early 1997.

IBAS Report on Bank Customers in Litigation 
 
Research of Bank Customers in active litigation with the five UK major high street banks was conducted by IBAS. Over the period of four years IBAS monitored progress on cases involved in litigation. Many UK Bank customers have expressed concerns that their initial problems with the bank were compounded further by the use of the legal system. Our research shows that:
43% - have been in litigation in excess of 4 years.
57% - have been in litigation in excess of 2 years.
79% - of actions have been instigated by the banks.
84% - of actions are legally aided.
62% - have changed solicitors three or more times.
81% - of cases relate to a business or late business.

 

Analysis of research:
1200 questionnaires were mailed to past IBAS enquirers in litigation with a bank. The figures were compiled over a three month period from October 1996. We received 764 replies of which 692 were fully completed with all relevant information - these formed the basis of our report.
 
Bank Percentage
Lloyds 37%
Barclays 30%
Nat West 24%
Midland 06%
RBS 03%
 
Banks involved in UK litigation can be categorized as follows
 
 
UK Banks commence legal actions instead of seeking solutions. In many of these cases the transfer of a bank complaint from the banking system to the legal system merely added further cost to the customers account for payment. Rarely has this worked in the customers favour, despite often well documented and extremely serious complaints being made. The failure of the banking internal complaints system, in some cases to enable a compromise to be made, has been deliberate and the transition from a banking matter to a legal matter has been to the customers disadvantage, but more importantly to the banks advantage, both in time and the ability to charge all recovery costs plus interest to the customers account in a large percentage of the cases. Particularly noticeable is the use of the legal system to prevent the Office of the Banking Ombudsman from continuing to investigate complaints where the bank is obviously at risk from a more detailed investigation taking place.
 
Four Out Of Five Proceedings Instigated By The Bank
 
As the majority of cases involved the bank instigating proceedings (79%) the customers perception of their problems at this stage were often clouded by simplistic reactions - i.e. "I'll have my day in court and my complaints will be properly aired" or "when they realise I am going to defend the action, they will pull out". In reality nothing could be further from the truth. The banks all have their own 'in house' or retained specialist banking lawyers, with instructions to protect the banks position at any cost. Their knowledge of these type of actions will be considerable and they will invariably project a 'hard line' attitude, regardless of the facts.
Banks Spare No Cost On Legal Actions
 
When the bank issues proceeding they fight with everything available and no cost will be spared in the hope of achieving a swift result. Confronted with this approach the customer has little time to consider how, or indeed if, they can defend the action and it is because of the brash and intimidating approach of the bank that the customer frequently offers no defence at all. The alternative being to act as litigant in person or be represented by a solicitor generally not aware of the banks overall strategies. This gives the bank the perfect opportunity to literally 'rush' an action through court, leaving the customer traumatised and financially even worse off than before. The costs of litigation is not a serious consideration for banks as invariably, in the majority of cases, costs will be met at a later date from the customer's property, or their assets.
 
Deliberate Delaying Tactics By UK Banks
 
The bank is only presented with a challenge, when the customer defends the proceedings and when faced with this situation, the bank adopts a totally different approach and the agenda changes drastically. The objective is then to delay. We have established that there is an intention to deliberately delay the progress of large numbers of cases by a variety of methods. In particular it is normal practise for the banks to repeatedly revert to the courts for extensions of time, which are invariably granted despite objections. Vital documents are frequently 'lost or destroyed', before the discovery stage and therefore not available to the customers lawyer, or indeed the court. It would appear that perjury is commonplace in affidavits from the banks - with statements being sworn on oath as true, when clearly they are misleading at best, but often not true.
Blatant Abuse Of The UK Legal System
 
Neither is it unusual for vital facts and figures to be presented to the court which are both inaccurate and poorly prepared by the bank, when submitting a claim for possession of the family home. The onus being on the customer alone to prove that the submissions by the bank are not accurate or correct.

This appears to IBAS to be biased in the wrong direction. Surely, it is up to the bank to prove without doubt their position and that the debt they are claiming is owed. This also leads IBAS to question the true cost of UK justice and whether it is denied to those who have limited resources. At the same time the legal system accepts both inaccurate and late affidavits from the banks, without penalty, whilst expecting the opposite from the customer.
 
Trying To Find The Right Lawyer Places The Customer In A Legal Minefield
 
When issued with legal proceedings, many customer enter a legal 'minefield' without the ability to differentiate between legal advisors capabilities. This frequently results in solicitors being instructed without consideration or knowledge of their ability in this extremely specialised field. This can result in total dissatisfaction or loss of the case, due to the instructed solicitor not having the experience or commitment with which to properly brief counsel, or present the case effectively.

The reality is that banks can afford the best, whilst the customer has to 'pick from the rest' - almost a lottery -

Not surprisingly 62% of our survey had changed solicitors at least three times during their proceedings.

Majority Of Customers Unable To Afford Costly Litigation
 
From the survey results, the majority (84%) of cases are legally aided and again the majority have been in litigation more than two years (57%) with the remaining (43%) still in litigation after more than four years.
 
Lawyers & Bankers The Only Winners From Legal Aid
 
The length of time can be directly related to how much time is wasted by the participants - in particular the banks, who have an unlimited purse and no sense of urgency, particularly when it is to the banks advantage both in time and the ability to charge all costs to the customers account.
Some solicitors also view the legal aid system as a good long term source of income and can because of this, extend the time necessary to bring a case to a successful conclusion. There is no doubt that both detract from the process of justice working effectively, or quickly.

Many perceive that justice is not working at all for those without money, particularly as there is now more attention being given to the way in which legal aid costs are being substantially reduced. At the same time there has been no penalty imposed on those who have deep pockets whilst hijacking the system for their own benefit and greed.
 
Customers Compromised By System
 
Of the 21% who have been able to commence an action against their bank, those who are legally aided face not only the delaying and time-wasting tactics. If their case looks sound and the bank senses a possible defeat, they will invariably offer a derisory out of court settlement, but only after a number of years have elapsed. Unfortunately, if the customers legal advisors consider the offer reasonable, balanced against future costs to proceed with the action, legal aid may be discharged.
 
Derisory Settlements To Customers
 
Such settlement offers rarely reflect a realistic, or fair figure and are offered in the knowledge that the easy option may be preferred by the customer's advisors and the legal aid board - the only loser can be the customer. This provides yet further advantage to the banks, who are already using their deep pockets to manipulate the situation to their own advantage. In this situation the customer is left in a hopeless position - with the case stopped from reaching court. The bank can be the only winners in this situation and again justice is not served.
 
Quote from Chief Executive Eddy Weatherill
 
 
 
"At IBAS we have proved that there is an alternative to lengthy UK Litigation and many cases have been lifted from the legal treadmill and resolved by direct and active negotiation through IBAS.

 

 
 
 
 
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However, our research has highlighted that there are thousands of people still in the grip of litigation, ignorant of any alternative, with no prospect of knowing whether their lawyers represent their best interests or not.

In recent years we have been able to identify a large number of the potential problem areas and at the same time help many avoid them, leading them to a successful outcome. Our recent initiatives have shown that where the will exists on both sides to reach a compromise IBAS involvement in the negotiation will certainly bring matters to a more favourable and fairer conclusion for the customer".
 

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When IBAS obtain confirmation of a full write off of a BTL shortfall debt claim for our member that result is always very pleasing for us too. 

When we obtain an exceptional £150k write off we are jubilant - as CL said:

 

“This is amazing news. Thank you for all your hard work.

I am relieved at long last. Couldn’t have done it without you!

I am so grateful to you for having been there for me. 

Once again thank you for your expertise and support throughout.”

- CL Testimonial

 

 

Email IBAS & see if we can help you too

 

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IBAS featured on BBC TV, BBC TV News, ITV News, Meridian TV and Sky TV News since 1992 and has contributed banking editorials and business banking articles for Sunday Times, Times, Daily Mail, Daily Express, Telegraph and Daily Mirror.

 

BBC Testimonial for IBAS - Your Money Not a moving account

 

Independent Banking Advisory Service (IBAS) - IBAS launched in 1992 as a specialist unincorporated business banking membership organization assisting bank customers with UK business banking account loan disputes and business banking debt disputes with their bank.

 

Last Modified: 5th July 2022