More than a million mortgages with the Mortgage Reference Benchmark Index (IRPH) and nearly 150 appeals have been filed with the Supreme Court by consumer associations and banks. It will be September 30 of next year when the High Court will decide on the legality of the IRPH.
The Civil Chamber of the High Court, which has appointed Judge Ángeles Parra Lucán as rapporteur, has announced by the order that it will not admit any further appeal by IRPH for processing until there is a sentence regarding the IRPH, whose date is scheduled for September 30th.
Both financial institutions and consumer associations have been waiting for two years for the judgment of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) on the transparency of the IRPH to which many mortgages were referenced before the 2011 crisis, the Euribor was around 1.5 % and the IRPH reached 4%. However, in March of this year, the CJEU returned the matter to the Spanish judges with a sentence that generated contradictory interpretations from banks and consumer associations.
The IRPH must be, according to the CJEU, subject to judicial control so that the Spanish courts can examine whether there are abusive clauses included in mortgage contracts. Spanish judges may substitute the IRPH case by case for another index such as the Euríbor, to protect consumers “from the especially harmful consequences that could result from the cancellation of the loan contract.” But in the end, the Supreme Court will have the final decision.
The High Court already ruled in late 2017 that the use of the IRPH was valid and it was not possible to subject it to a transparency control because it is a defined index and regulated by a legal norm. Two months later, the 38th Court of First Instance of Barcelona asked the CJEU to rule on whether or not the IRPH was subject to a transparency control and to determine whether it should be replaced or cease to apply, but with its decision, the Luxembourg court returned to the Spanish judges –and finally to the Supreme Court- the decision on the legality of the IRPH.
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Should you have any queries do not hesitate to contact our office on 015545711 or directly with our Spanish Abogado, Javier Soto, at firstname.lastname@example.org.