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Financial dispute mediation

Authorities will start accepting applications for the appointment of mediators in financial disputes from Friday, the agency tasked with the resolution of those disputes said on Tuesday.

Financial dispute mediationTHE AGENCY for out-of-court financial settlements said it will start receiving applications on Friday to appoint mediators in disputes between financial institutions and consumers who cannot service their loans in an attempt to facilitate their restructuring.

Financial ombudsman Pavlos Ioannou said that the agency’s mediation will apply in cases of credit facilities of up to €350,000 at the start of the loan agreement for the purchase of a primary residence, provided that none of the parties has resorted to legal procedures or the lender has not initiated the foreclosure procedure and the mortgaged homes are not in receivership.

The mortgage property should have been a primary residence of the owner or lessee for a minimum of six months.

Ioannou warned of high expectations. “Unfortunately due to the huge systemic problems that the financial sector of Cyprus is facing, our compatriots may have excessive expectations,” he said and added that “the result on many occasions are distortions in their strategic decisions in dealing with their mediation problems. We don’t have a magic wand to solve problems”.

Cases brought for arbitration to the agency will take up to a month before they area settled, Ioannou said, while in some cases it will be at the discretion of his office to grant an additional month for the parties to reach an out-of-court settlement.

Mediators will receive a fee of no more than €500, of which 20% per cent will be paid by the consumer, while 80% will be charged to the bank.

Readers' comments

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  • @FadiN on 2014/12/01 at 10:34 am – You’ll find the Financial Ombudsman’s website at

  • FadiN says:

    Most newspapers are mentioning the Financial Ombudsman but none provide contact details for the Agency. Is there a website we can visit to get information on how to apply and for determining eligibility? it would be helpful to provide details of how to contact the Agency. Thanks

  • Richard says:

    @Mike: “Hopefully at the end of all this we can return to normality and reality, stop applying telephone number asking prices to low cost property and begin to see property as a home rather than as an investment or vehicle for greed.”

    I’m beginning to think that this is the golden comment on C.P.N.

    We’ve collectively all been sucked into this ‘honey trap’ of property, property, property for so long before the crash happened. It’s been an acid-blinding lesson for me. Of course you can make money from property – in the same way you can make money from virtually anything if you read the conditions properly and manage the risks.

    BUT – property is illiquid. Quite possibly one of the most illiquid things in the world. Warren Buffett – one of the world’s greatest investors – won’t go near it.

    For every action – there is an equal and opposite reaction. Property in Cyprus will be no different – there needs to be a correction to the market and all the debt associated with it. Debt is the cancer in this situation – and it was created with short-sighted greed – pure and simple.

    We need another Glass-Stiegel act – this time set in granite – and not dissolvable in the fizzing campaigning of ‘Greenspan-Seltzer’. The only people who can drive that outcome – are us.

    My life is now about predominantly what I need – rather than predominantly what I want. It takes time – but it doesn’t half clear your head!

  • stevie R says:

    This all looks good on the surface but who has appointed these agency’s. Is it the bank or some other company attached to the bank giving the bank control. This would not apply to me as an individual as my developer is in liquidation so how are the bank going to sort this mess out. Comments would be appreciated.

    Thank you

  • Deanna says:

    ” Cases brought before arbitration to the agency will take up to a month before they are settled “……

    Only a month? Dream on……….

  • Mike says:

    I foresee a number of problems arising here not least as a result of our psyche. Loans / mortgages to €350K would indicate or should indicate an income of in the region of €87K to €140K per annum. I am not convinced those borrowing to that extent are in that income bracket. We will find it difficult to accept any declaration which doesn’t meet our need to be handed things on a plate with no hardship attached.

    There are obviously many ifs and buts attached to the proposals so it would be good to read what the outcome would be for those who cannot be included in the process. I assume they will lose their homes.

    Hopefully at the end of all this we can return to normality and reality, stop applying telephone number asking prices to low cost property and begin to see property as a home rather than as an investment or vehicle for greed.

  • MartynG says:

    Much needed, this but the Ombudsman is clearly going to be inundated with applications, and, understandably, is already giving out contingent warnings about delays etc. Can only say ‘Big Step in the Right Direction’, but will he have the resource, and the resolve!, back-up to meet his Objectives??

    a “hiding to nothing” comes to mind!

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