BOI Appeal - addtl info req'd by Panel from Bank in Dec'18 still not rec'd

JellyTots

Registered User
Messages
4
I'm wondering if anyone know if there is anything I can do in this situation to move things along when BOI have not provided additional info to the appeals panel almost 5 months since it was requested by them.

Background:
~ original ICS mortgage taken out in 2004; Top up in 2005
~ Staff mortgage - denied tracker at end of 2 year fixed rate.
~ June 2016 - home improvements - options were to "top up" the ICS mortgage again, or roll all borrowing up into one BOI mortgage - technically treated as a switcher, but all of our borrowings have always been held by BOI Group. We decided on the second option as BOI fixed rates were better - would not have made the same decision had our original mortgages been on the correct tracker rates. We had given up at that stage on ever getting tracker restored.
~ December 2017 - original ICS mortgages deemed impacted and redress compensation awarded for the period 2008 to June 2016.

Our argument for appeal is that the portion of our new BOI account which was used to clear the original ICS accounts should also been treated as impacted (and offer letter stipulates clearly that this was the purpose of that portion of the borrowings). We have submitted an appeal that our current BOI mortgage is assessed and the "impacted" portion moved back onto tracker rate and relevant redress/compo for overpayments given. The additional portion which was for home improvements is not impacted and we've clearly stated in our appeal that we are not seeking tracker rates/redress on those borrowings.

We initially emailed/wrote directly to BOI in December 2017.
We got holding letters in Dec 2017, Jan 2018, Feb 2018 and April 2018.
No further letters directly from BOI since then.

~ 20 September 2018, lodged complete Appeal application via Grant Thornton.
~ 24 September 2018, acknowledgement recd from GT and advised that our appeal to be assessed by Panel B and they have requested historical loan data from BOI.
~ 18 October 2018, recd copy of historical loan data provided by BOI (only relates to the two original mortgage accounts).
~ 27th November 2018, letter sent to GT requesting update on appeal.
~ 3rd December, letter from GT confirming Panel have reviewed our appeal and determined that additional info is required from BOI in order to fairly consider our appeal. Once info is recd from BOI, case will be progressed for further review by the Panel. (I assume the additional info they requested is in relation to the current BOI mortgage application/account)
~ 30th January 2019, another letter sent to GT requesting update and expressing concern that the Bank is delaying the process.
~ 6th February, reply from GT. standard holding letter - info requested by panel not yet received from the bank and request has been escalated.
~ 29th March, further letter sent to GT again requesting update and asking specific questions such as "what timeframes have been set out for BOI to reply to information requests?"; "what steps have you as independent secretariat taken to follow up on this information?"; "have you followed up by letter or phone call?" etc.
~ 5th April, reply from GT which is identical in wording to the holding letter recd on 6th February and answers none of the specific questions we asked.

It appears to me that the Independent Secretariat/Appeals Panel have no power to force the Bank to respond in any sort of timely manner. I also believe the only reason the escalation requests have been made by GT are because they have received letters from us looking for updates. If we weren't writing to them and left the job in their hands, they wouldn't be bothering with following up with the Bank at all.

So, I guess my question is where do we go from here? Do I just keep hounding GT with more frequent letters looking for updates? Is is common for the banks to delay their response to additional info requests?
Is there any point in lodging a case with the Ombudsman at this stage, or do we need to have had our appeal assessed by the panel first?

Sorry for the very long post. would appreciate any input/advice.
 

notabene

Frequent Poster
Messages
335
Would you consider writing to Bank of Ireland looking for the additional information yourself under a GDPR request - and if this is not then provided to you making a complaint to the data protection commissioner?
 

LadyHB

Frequent Poster
Messages
59
I would find out from GT exactly what information has been requested from BOI. Ask for it in writing. I've found the people on the GT helpline pretty open and surprisingly helpful. They have put answers to questions I've put to them, in writing to me. I'd get on the phone to them and find out what the hold up seems to be. What has been the response from BOI etc. Where is your case in the list of cases to be heard under Panel B's remit. Once the info is provided by BOI are you then prioritised to the top of the Panel B list, given how long you've had to wait etc.?

As noted by the previous poster - I would definitely be approaching BOI directly at this stage and I would be open in sharing that information with GT as well (that might spur them on). I would imagine if you made a Data Access Request with BOI it would be turned around pretty quickly (I got my almost complete mortgage file from them in about 4 weeks). There really shouldn't be any delay in getting mortgage account documents from something that was transacted in 2016. You're 5 months waiting for something that seems very reasonable and easy to provide.

I would be cc'ing all letters to BOI and GT to the Central Bank as well (Derville Rowland probably the best person) - just to demonstrate that you're sharing this lack of cooperation, inefficiency and extended personal disruption, with the ultimate overseers.

Good luck with it. Sounds like a strong case. And if they're requesting additional info. it does indicate they're taking it seriously at least. The only thing to note though, is the maximum Panel B can award on any appeal regardless of the circumstances, is 10k + vouched for expenses (e.g. any professional fees you incurred in preparing your appeal). To go beyond 10k they need to bring your case to the BOI Steering Committee. I doubt that happens too frequently (if at all).
 

SaySomething

Frequent Poster
Messages
554
Would you consider writing to Bank of Ireland looking for the additional information yourself under a GDPR request - and if this is not then provided to you making a complaint to the data protection commissioner?
I would copy your correspondence to the data protection commissioner and the central bank. It may materialise quicker thank you think as a result.

However, you are correct in your assessment, the Secretariat have no powers to compel the bank to hand the information over.
 

JellyTots

Registered User
Messages
4
Thanks for the replies - gives me some ideas of how to move forward and feel like I'm doing something proactive.

I'll give GT a call on Monday and get a DPA request in to Bank of Ireland and hopefully that will get things moving. Like the idea of cc'ing the Central Bank and Data Commissioner too :)
 

Sonny.

Registered User
Messages
2
Thanks for the replies - gives me some ideas of how to move forward and feel like I'm doing something proactive.

I'll give GT a call on Monday and get a DPA request in to Bank of Ireland and hopefully that will get things moving. Like the idea of cc'ing the Central Bank and Data Commissioner too :)
 

Sonny.

Registered User
Messages
2
Hi, We’re in a similar situation. It’s been 5 and a half months since we submitted our appeal to GT. No written updates, just limited information from them when I have rung. They are waiting on information back from BOI. I’m going to email them for an update.
Have you had any update since your follow up plan with GT on the 27 April?
 

Foxy007

Registered User
Messages
21
I see you were ICS to start with. We were too and getting information from them is like pulling teeth. I 've been to both the Central Bank and DP because I wasn't satisfied that I got full documentation of our account. I've also been told by someone clearly not up to date that despite the bank agreeing in 2015 that we were over charged that our account was 'not impacted'. I think they just want to forget that ICS existed.
 
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