The findings of a Central Bank report – revealed in The Irish Times today – which stated that there is no evidence that vulture funds are failing to engage with people who have let mortgages slip into arrears have been rubbished by independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice.
The Roscommon-Galway TD labelled the report as “another load of bull” which is being circulated by the Central Bank and the Government.
Commenting on the matter, he said: “Writing letters and exchanging phone calls through a middle man, in my view, is not classified as engaging with a borrower; it is just a box ticking exercise for these vulture funds.
“The most important part of the article however lies at the end, as it states that vulture funds have a smaller suite of options to offer borrowers compared to banks.
“Borrowers are forced to deal with middle men as they go over and back in an effort to come to an agreement,” he said.
It is understood that the Central Bank’s report is being presented to Cabinet today, before it becomes widely available this evening.
If the Minister for Finance, Paschal Donohue, decides to believe this report’s findings, then Deputy Fitzmaurice has encouraged him to spend some time on the ground with people who are trying to deal with vulture funds at present.
Continuing, the Roscommon-Galway TD said: “This might open his eyes to the harsh reality that this report has failed to highlight.
“Vulture funds are here for short, sharp monetary gain. They care more about turning a profit for conglomerates than Irish citizens
“These funds have purchased loans for 30%, 40% or 50% of their true value. When a borrower tries to reach an agreement with them – especially if they are a farmer – every effort is made by the vulture fund to take the last drop of blood from them.
“This so called report is an insult to the many people who have tried to deal with vulture funds after their debts were sold on for a fraction of what they were actually worth.
“Families who have had to deal with these vulture funds have been put through enormous mental and emotional strain,” Deputy Fitzmaurice added.
Concluding, the independent TD described this report “as another cover up” by the Central Bank and Government as vulture funds take advantage of vulnerable people in our society.