It permits forced restructuring, e.g. in a situation where the bank does not want to deal with the borrower in debt.
The bill aims to restore the equality of the parties to the loan agreement, which was denominated or indexed in foreign currencies: Swiss francs, dollars, USD or other currency – said the presidential minister at a press conference.
Currency conversion is not restructuring
Borrowers will be able to benefit not so much from currency conversion, but from loan restructuring, i.e. conversion after a special so-called fair course. This course will have to be calculated – individually for each loan and borrower – by the lender, i.e. bank or credit unions. It will be determined by comparing the loan amount that the borrower actually received and the amount of the so-called hypothetical loan.
The latter is a loan that would be available to the borrower if the loan agreement were concluded for the same amount in, the same period, with the same margin and the interest rate changed from for currency for loans in.
A special algorithm will be used to calculate this rate, which is part of the act. The act itself and the special calculator (only for franc loans) will be available on the president’s website. For example, if the loan was drawn in Swiss francs at the exchange rate of 2.27, and the exchange rate as at the date of establishing the fair exchange rate was 3.91, then according to the presented calculator, the fair exchange rate would be 2.80.
Three ways to restructure
In addition, the bill imposes an obligation on banks to “liquidate” – also retroactively – the so-called credit sales. The bank must calculate the difference between its exchange rate and the average Good Finance rate.
The sum of the overpayment at the borrower’s application is to be deducted from the loan principal amount that is still outstanding. If it turns out to be higher, the borrower will receive the difference from the bank in the form of cash. After determining the so-called Fair borrower will have the right to choose one of three ways to restructure the loan.
First of all, from voluntary restructuring, which the bank must agree to. Then the current loan agreement will be amended by an annex on the application of the so-called fair course. If the bank does not agree to the voluntary procedure, or the consumer does not want to negotiate with the bank, it will be able to apply for forced restructuring.
Then he will be obliged to repay the loan from the moment of submitting the application after the so-called fair course. The third method envisaged by the project is the transfer of ownership to the lender with the effect of releasing the borrower from debt.
Who can benefit from repayment assistance
The above principles are to apply to loan agreements for a denominated loan or indexed loan as well as loan agreements for a denominated loan or indexed loan, secured by a mortgage and not repaid by the date of entry into force of the Act, contracted as a rule by consumers.
It may also be used by a natural person who conducts business activity alone if he/she has not made any depreciation/amortization of the mortgaged property and does not include interest and other charges under loan agreements as tax-deductible costs. However, such an agreement should be concluded in the period from January 1, 2000, to August 26, 2011.
The right to restructure can be exercised only within 12 months from the date of entry into force of the Act. According to the draft, it is to come into force 30 days from the day of publication in the Journal of Laws. Currently, the draft contract has been submitted to the Polish Financial Supervision Authority with a request to calculate the financial effects. Only after these calculations will he be directed to the Sejm.
The costs of solving the problem with the franc in the most profitable variants for debtors could reach tens of billions of dollars, and such a scale of burdens could pose a threat to the stability of the financial system.