Swiss Franc Loan Saga Continues As Slovene Supreme Court Orders Retrial

By , 19 Nov 2018, 14:25 PM Business
Swiss Franc Loan Saga Continues As Slovene Supreme Court Orders Retrial Wikimedia CC-by-0

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STA, 16 November 2018 - The Supreme Court has reversed a decision in favour of Swiss franc borrowers, as it ordered a retrial in a case in which the Higher Court sided with the borrower's claim that he had not been forewarned about possible appreciation of the currency. The case was reported by the Bank Association of Slovenia on Friday.

This is one of the cases related to the by the Swiss central bank in 2015 to stop defending the value of the franc against the euro, which led to a surge in the value of the franc against the euro.

The affected borrowers in Slovenia have been trying to reach a systemic solution, including through the Franc Association, which is lobbying for a special law. In the meantime, courts are processing individual cases.

The key issue: Should Banka Slovenije have foreseen Swiss franc appreciation?

The particular case had been rejected by the court of first instance, while the Higher Court changed the ruling by completely upholding the claim by the borrower and finding the contract null and void.

According to the newspaper Delo, the case involves the Austrian-owned bank Banka Sparkasse.

The Bank Association of Slovenia, which advocates the case-by-case basis, argued today that the Supreme Court said the consequence of the bank failing to forewarn the borrower could not be the basis for annulling the contract.

The court added that when assessing loan contracts in Swiss francs, courts should take into account that the Slovenian consumer legislation at the time did not precisely regulate the mechanism of informed consent.

The Supreme Court added that an absence of loan calculations in any case must not be a decisive factor, according to the Bank Association.

The court has also confirmed that the central bank, Banka Slovenije, had not been able to project in its publications that the Swiss franc will appreciate, which had happened in 2011 and 2015. It is not possible to make reliable and precise forecasts regarding the period and extent of the change of currency exchange rate, it added.

While the impact of certain factors is predictable to a certain extent to experts, no expert could have predicted a unilateral measure such as that by the Swiss central bank in 2015, which had a decisive impact on the Swiss franc exchange rate, the association also quoted the court as saying.

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