Withdrawal worthwhile both in the case of outstanding and repaid loans

Published 20 July 2016 by GRP Rainer LLP

Withdrawal can prove to be an extremely attractive proposition from a financial perspective, even for consumers whose loans have already been paid off. That being said, withdrawal should certainly be carried out before June 21, 2016.

GRP Rainer Lawyers and Tax Advisors in Cologne, Berlin, Bonn, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Munich, Stuttgart and London conclude: Until June 21, 2016, it is still possible to withdraw from real estate loans that were concluded between 2002 and 2010, provided that the bank or savings bank in question made use of flawed guidance pertaining to the right of withdrawal.

If that is the case, then it is possible to withdraw regardless of whether the loan still has to be repaid or has already been paid off. Even in the case of a loan that has already been repaid, withdrawal can still result in large savings for consumers because of the early repayment penalty demanded by banks in order for a loan to be prematurely paid off. Consumers can have this refunded in the event of a successful withdrawal. But that is not all: it is also possible to demand compensation for use with respect to the interest paid. The compensation for use for paid interest is typically 2.5 per cent above the base rate. In the end, it is possible for the consumer’s savings to amount to a five-figure sum following a successful withdrawal. Having said that, the actual sum always depends in part on the loan amount.

Irrespective of whether the loan has already been repaid or is still to be paid off, consumers can turn to lawyers who are competent in the field of banking law. They can review whether the conditions for successfully withdrawing from a loan have been met. Generally speaking, this is in fact the case if the bank used flawed guidance on the right of withdrawal with regard to real estate loans concluded between 2002 and 2010. According to research conducted by the Verbraucherzentrale Hamburg (Hamburg Consumer Advice Centre), this applies to roughly 80 per cent of the real estate loans concluded within this timeframe.

In most cases, it remains possible to withdraw from these loans even years after they were taken out, as the withdrawal period never commenced and consequently consumers initially had a perpetual right of withdrawal. However, the legislature has since significantly curtailed this right. Accordingly, one will no longer be able to withdraw from legacy contracts from June 21, 2016.