8% of the resolved casefiles involved consumers from Iasi

Since the beginning of the year, more than 260 Romanian consumers have obtained from banks and NBFIs, with the help of ABDRC, reduction or removal of fees, reduced loan instalments, or even writing off the entire outstanding principal.

The ABDRC roadshow, the first initiative aimed at making popular methods of alternative financial and banking dispute resolution, arrives in Iasi.

What it’s in for consumers

Since the beginning of the year, more than 260 Romanian consumers have obtained from banks and NBFIs, with the help of ABDRC, reduction or removal of fees, reduced loan instalments, or even writing off the entire outstanding principal.

Of these, approximately 8% are from Iasi. Here are some examples: AG from Iasi was written-off the principal of RON 1,298 and thus his agreement with the bank came to an end. For AC, also from Iasi, the bank shall write-off the amount of RON 11,450 as overdue balance. For PM, the bank reduced the balance by the EUR 2,000 and granted a reduction of the loan costs as follows: 3.5% fixed interest for the first five years, the EURIBOR 6M+4pp, and a zero management fee.

Amicable settlement: the first option in the consumers’ disagreements with banks

The specialists of the Alternative Banking Dispute Resolution Centre (ABDRC), an institution making available to Romanians the necessary infrastructure to have disputes between consumers and financial and banking institutions settled amicably, show the inhabitants of Iasi potential solutions for closing any potential financial disagreements or disputes.

“A survey conducted at the request of ABDRC early this year, showed that 27% of the respondents to a questionnaire did not know what ABDRC could do for them. The ABDRC roadshow was started precisely to meet this need for information about the financial and banking services and to respond to the potential disagreements they have with banks and NBFIs. We want, with the aid of the ABDRC’s awareness raising campaigns, amicable settlement to become the first choice when people have disagreements with the banks”, declared Alexandru Păunescu, member of the Steering Board of the Alternative Banking Dispute Resolution Centre (ABDRC).

 

Which are the main problems encountered by consumers

According to a survey conducted by KANTAR TNS at the request of ABDRC, the main problems faced by consumers in their relations with banks and NBFIs, are the high fees, the time they need to wait to have a request addressed, and excessive bureaucracy. On the other hand, the settlement means consumers usually turn to are discussions with the representatives of the institution, or complaints with the National Consumer Protection Authority.

Approximately 9 of 10 respondents declared that they would approach ABDRC in the future to have addressed any potential problem or dispute with a financial and banking institution. The lack of costs and the short settlement time, up to 90 days, would convince consumers to turn to the experts of ABDRC.

Amicable settlement, 12 times faster the court proceedings

Court actions remain the method of choice for dispute settlement, but this is a lengthy process which does not guarantee a favourable outcome. According to a report produced by KPMG at the request of the Romanian Banking Association, a civil lawsuit, covering all three stages of proceedings – first court, appeal and second appeal, might last more than 3 years. By way of comparison, amicable settlement with the support of ABDRC takes no more than 90 days, and is free of charge for consumers.

The ABDRC Roadshow project consists of a number of meetings between the specialists of the institution and media representatives in the main cities of the country, for the purpose of promoting the benefits of amicable settlement. This is the fourth edition of the ABDRC Roadshow, after having previously been in Timișoara, Cluj-Napoca and Constanța.

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