The Cyprus Consumer Protection Service (CCPS) has registered 56 applications at court against property developers and banks in connection with abusive clauses in consumer contracts.
According to the Greek language Phileleftheros applications have been registered against 7 banks and 49 property developers.
Although the property developers and banks have not been named, an English translation of the list of decisions taken by the CCPS can be found by clicking here.
In February this year, the European Commission has sent a reasoned opinion to Cyprus for failing to properly implement and enforce EU law on unfair contract terms (Council Directive 93/13/EEC) and unfair commercial practices (Directive 2005/29/EC).
The Commission opened this infringement case in 2013 based on a series of complaints from EU citizens who had bought real estate in Cyprus and had allegedly been misled by real estate developers, banks and lawyers.
The Commission found that the Cypriot authorities were not effectively enforcing either of the two relevant EU Directives.
In March this year, lawmakers welcomed the first court judgement against a bank for unfair contract terms of contract, but still harangued the banks for acting with “impunity” in terms of their service fees to clients.
In June 2020, the Nicosia District Court issued a decree against the Societe Generale Bank, ordering the immediate cessation and non-repetition of use of terms which are included in a mortgage agreement form, following a request from the Consumer Protection Service.
The decree against the Societe Generale Bank paved the way for more requests concerning abusive clauses and the CCPS can now submit requests for older cases to be considered.
Making your complaint to the CCPS
Although many people who have bought property in Cyprus have complained about abusive clauses in their contracts with property developers and banks, we expect that many have yet to do so and need guidance.