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Judge seeks views on repossessions.

One of the country's leading judges yesterday set out proposals on how the courts should deal with home repossession moves by banks and building societies.

Sir Anthony Clarke, the Master of the Rolls who heads the civil Court of Appeal, called for comments from the legal profession on a new protocol to try to avoid large numbers of homeowners facing court action because of mortgage arrears following the credit crunch.

He is head of the Civil Justice Council which has issued a consultation paper proposing measures to ensure all reasonable steps have been taken before homeowners are taken to court.

The proposals are:

to encourage the exchange of early and full information about the prospective legal claim

to enable parties to avoid litigation by agreeing a settlement before proceedings are begun

to support the efficient management of proceedings where litigation cannot be avoided.

Sir Anthony said: "The proposed protocol aims to encourage mortgage lenders and borrowers to resolve problems arising from mortgage arrears without recourse to the courts. Where recourse to litigation cannot be avoided, it aims to ensure that the court system is used effectively and efficiently."
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Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Mar 1, 2008
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