Supreme Court seeks expert opinion before forex loans ruling
Poland's Supreme Court on Monday refrained from issuing a ruling on a highly controversial case of currency loans, and instead asked the country's central bank as well as the financial regulator and ombudsman for an opinion.
Almost a million Polish consumers who held mortgages denominated in foreign currencies, especially the Swiss franc, were hit by an unexpected appreciation of the Swiss currency several years ago which, in some cases, doubled their outstanding debt.
The Supreme Court decided to seek opinions from the National Bank of Poland, the Polish Financial Supervision Authority and the Financial Ombudsman, the court's spokesman Aleksander Stępkowski said.
The court did not specify when the ruling could be expected. The institutions will now have 30 days to formulate their stance and judges will be able to take further action depending on the opinions, Stępkowski elaborated.
The widely-expected ruling was to cover a broad scope of issues related to currency loans, including the banks' right to compensation for use of capital upon the invalidation of a currency loan contract as well as the legitimacy of claims by the lender and borrower in the event of the annulment of a contract.
On Friday, the Supreme Court ruled that claims of banks and customers related to FX mortgages are independent and are not automatically subject to mutual compensations. The inquiry by Poland's Financial Ombudsman concerned financial settlements and potential claims by parties following the invalidation of a forex loan in a common court.
Earlier on Tuesday, the court sitting was postponed due to a bomb threat.
On Tuesday morning, several government and judicial agencies were evacuated after receiving e-mailed bomb threats. The recipients of the threats included the Supreme Court, the Supreme Auditing Board (NIK), the National Council of the Judiciary (KRS) and the Warsaw Appeals Court.
The Supreme Court had already postponed the sitting twice before the latest incident.
In Warsaw, almost 40 buildings were evacuated due to the bomb alerts.