Settlement nears in row over debt

A WOMAN who fears her house could be repossessed to pay an overdraft from 15 years ago was today told by bank bosses they would like an “amicable settlement”.

A WOMAN who fears her house could be repossessed to pay an overdraft from 15 years ago was today told by bank bosses they would like an “amicable settlement”.

Audrey White is faced with an £18,000 demand for the interest on the money she borrowed - even though she has already paid NatWest Bank four times the original £5,000 overdraft.

The matter was set to come before Ipswich County Court tomorrow but now the bank's legal team have written to her to ask if the case could be adjourned - and she has agreed.

In the letter, NatWest's solicitors say they hope it will lead to an “amicable settlement”.

Mrs White, of Kendal Green, Old Felixstowe, said: “I have agreed to the case being adjourned and we will wait and see what they have to say outside court.

“I have been very disappointed with the bank's responses to my letters so far. I have been asking for a compromise and they just write back and say forget it.

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“I have already offered £10,000 as a settlement but they have refused to accept it, and I will have my legal fees to pay on top of that and they are already mounting up.”

Mrs White has been told if the county court judge finds against her, her home will be repossessed and she will have to vacate it within 21 days.

It will be sold and the mortgage paid off, and the NatWest will get the £18,000 it is seeking in unpaid interest and she will have to pay the bank's legal costs and the court costs.

When Mrs White's overdraft reached its maximum 15 years ago, the Citizen's Advice Bureau helped her negotiate a monthly payment of £30 to pay off the debt. She has paid £5,000 in monthly payments and £15,500 in lump sums to clear interest.

NatWest has said no comment can be made on the matter until the court case is complete.

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