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Office of Competition and Consumer Protection

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Proceedings against Bank Handlowy and Bank Pocztowy - early repayment of credit

< previous | next > 26.11.2020

Proceedings against Bank Handlowy and Bank Pocztowy - early repayment of credit
  • President of UOKiK Tomasz Chróstny has charged Bank Handlowy and Bank Pocztowy with failing to properly settle the costs of consumer loans and credits repaid before their due date and with failing to repay money due to the consumers.

 

The majority of financial institutions have already complied with the judgement of the Court of Justice of the European Union  of 11 September 2019 on early repayment of consumer credit. In the said judgement, the CJEU presented an interpretation of art. 49 of the Consumer Credit Act consistent with the earlier position of the President of UOKiK issued in 2016 and confirmed in March 2020. The rule is as follows: if a consumer has repaid a credit before its due date, the bank or other financial institution must reduce its costs accordingly. This applies both to the interest due for the period by which the agreement was shortened and other costs which were necessary to obtain a consumer credit under given conditions, e.g. commissions, preparation fee. The reduction of non-interest costs should be proportional to the period of shortening the contract using the straight-line method.

Thanks to our efforts, most banks properly settle their accounts with consumers who have repaid their consumer loan or credit before the due date thereof.  There are, however, some disgraceful exceptions. Bank Handlowy and Bank Pocztowy continue to reject complaints pertaining to the period before the CJEU judgement. The regulations have been in force since December 2011, the position of the President of UOKiK in this respect has been well-known for years, and the CJEU has only dispelled the doubts raised by the banks about legal interpretations. The banks had one year to change their practices in order to fully respect consumers' rights and repay the money due to them. Bank Handlowy and Bank Pocztowy failed to do so, so I have charged these two banks with breaching the consumer's collective interests,” says Tomasz Chróstny, President of the Office of Competition and Consumer Protection.

In both cases, the charges pressed relate to the failure to reimburse consumers the proportional part of the fees charged for early credit repayment, where such repayment was made prior to the CJEU judgement, i.e. 11th September 2019. Both banks reject consumers' requests for reimbursement of part of the costs in such a situation. These banks are subject to a financial penalty of up to 10 percent of their turnover and an order to remedy the continuing effects of the breach. It is worth recalling that as early as in December 2019, the President of UOKiK issued against Bank Pocztowy a decision (that is legally binding) pertaining to the product “Pożyczka na Poczcie” (Loan at the Post Office). Owing to this decision, consumers were able to reclaim their overpaid commission on such credits granted between 1st March 2015 and 30th June 2016.

Most banks settle fees charged in connection with early repayment of consumer credit in accordance with the straight-line method recommended by UOKiK. It is transparent, fair and easily verifiable for consumers. It consists in dividing all reduced non-interest costs by the number of days in which the contract was to be valid, and then multiplying the result by the number of days by which the credit period was reduced. The resulting amount is the amount due to the consumer. Increasingly more often the repayment takes place automatically, although some banks require an application in case of some former repayments.

The President of UOKiK has also been conducting proceedings against a few banks that are expected to provide additional explanations. These are: Santander Bank Polska, Santander Consumer Bank, Plus Bank, Nest Bank, Pekao and BOŚ.

Consumer, you can use our credit calculator, that will help you calculate the estimated amount to be reimbursed based on the straight-line method. When applying for repayment, download our application form and send it to the relevant financial institution.

Consumer support:

Phone: +48 801 440 220 or +48 22 290 89 16 – consumer helpline
Email: [SCODE]cG9yYWR5QGRsYWtvbnN1bWVudG93LnBs[ECODE]
Consumer ombudsmen – in your town or district

Additional information for the media:

UOKiK Press Office
Pl. Powstańców Warszawy 1, 00-950 Warszawa, Poland
Phone +48 695 902 088, +48 22 55 60 246
E-mail: [SCODE]Yml1cm9wcmFzb3dlQHVva2lrLmdvdi5wbA==[ECODE]
Twitter: @UOKiKgovPL

Attached files

 

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