Cypriot Banks now face heftier fines for treating their debtors unfairly

The Cypriot Parliament have recently passed a law which expands the sphere of action of the Financial Ombudsman and encouraging the agency to enforce heftier fines on banks which have been found to have treated their debtors unfairly.

The Financial Ombudsman can now award damages of up to EUR €100,000 (which is double that of the previous EUR €50,000) for real losses suffered by a consumer. This is following a final decision which goes against a financial corporation.

Following this, the agency will also assess complaints worth up to EUR €250,000 (up from the current EUR €170,000) which relate to disputes between consumers and financial corporations.

These amendments will also allow legal entities to file a complaint whose turnover – in the previous year to when they file a complaint – does not exceed EUR €350,000 (compared to the EUR €250,000 today).

Another amendment extends the deadline from the current 14 days to 30 days for which a debtor can apply for mediation.