16 May 2023

~2 minutes read

High Court allows Galway secretary to write off €3.6m of debt

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High Court allows Galway secretary to write off €3.6m of debt

Galway Bay fm newsroom – The High Court has allowed a Galway based secretary to write-off around €3.6m of debt she owes to financial institutions.

The court has approved a Personal Insolvency Arrangement, that allows 59 year old Ms Winifred Swaine to retain her home at Athena Lodge, Knocknacarra Lodge, Salthill.

The court heard Ms Swaine, who works as a secretary at the solicitor’s firm owned by her estranged husband, had total debts of over €4.16m.

Her financial difficulties stem from the collapse of the property market some years ago.

A Personal Insolvency Arrangement was formulated for her with her creditors: Bank of Ireland, Pepper Finance, Everyday Finance and Mars Capital.

The court was told Ms Swaine’s creditors would fare better under the proposed PIA compared to if she was adjudicated a bankrupt.

Counsel said that under the PIA, Ms Swaine’s former husband will contribute a lump sum of €200,000 to Mars Captial in respect of her mortgage.

Over the next ten years she and her husband will continue to make repayments on the remaining €204,000 due on the mortgage.

Her former husband will also contribute to the €1.81m worth of debt owed to Everyday Finance, which will then remove the charge it holds on part of Ms Swaine’s home in Salthill.

Ms Swaine will also provide a lump sum of €9,150 to cover her fees and as a dividend to her unsecured creditors who are owed just over €3.6m.

In approving the PIA, which will allow Ms Swaine to return to solvency, Mr Justice Owens said that he was satisfied that the necessary criteria had been met.

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