78. Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick asked the Minister for Finance the reason a family (details supplied) that has been discharged from bankruptcy is unable to get mortgage approval two years later; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 18588/18 asked on 01 May 2018)

Minister for Finance (Deputy Paschal Donohoe): The Deputy may be aware that, as Minister for Finance, I have no direct function in the relationship between banks and their customers. Decisions taken by banks in this regard, and the manner in which they conduct their day-to-day operations, are matters for the board and management of the respective banks. Notwithstanding the fact that the State has shareholdings in some of the banks, I must ensure that these institutions are run on a commercial, cost-effective and independent basis to protect their value as assets to the State. Relationship Frameworks have been specified that define the nature of the relationship between the Minister for Finance and the banks and these Frameworks are available on the Department’s website.

As the circumstance described by the Deputy is a matter concerning certain banks, the individuals involved should continue to engage with these banks. Should the matter not be resolved to the individuals’ satisfaction, they can refer the matter to the Financial Services and Pensions Ombudsman.