Greek-Australian Steve and Iris Karamihos, both nearly 80, were threatened with eviction from their home located in Sydney after they could no longer afford to pay back a $1.2 million, a 25-year loan which was approved by Bendigo and Adelaide Bank almost six years ago.
NSW Supreme Court Judge Michael Pembroke stated “The loan was a bridge too far, at too late a stage of their fast-fading lives. Its unsuitability was compounded by the bank’s incompetence.” The judge ruled they only had a feeble ability to read, especially given the fact that they know little English, and would not have been able to understand the loan’s complex legal documents.
The Greek couple migrated to Australia at a young age, did not go to high school, and had worked long and hard conducting their cafe business for decades, the Herald Sun reports. The judge described what the family went through after taking out the loan as a “nightmare of adversity, misfortune and travail.”
However, the good news is that the ruling said the couple should be restored to their previous position before the Bendigo and Adelaide Bank loan. A spokeswoman for Bendigo and Adelaide Bank also stressed: “The Bank will consider its options in this matter.”
The couple celebrated their birthdays, which are some days apart, at home on March 12.
S. Karamihos said “We were facing ruin, now we can stay in our home. Why didn’t the bank do this from the start?”