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Pilots plan to sue ABN Amro for allowing them to borrow money

Wednesday 09 January 2013

A group of seven unemployed pilots are attempting to sue ABN Amro bank for being irresponsible in granting them huge loans to pay for their training, RTL news reports on Wednesday.

The pilots say the bank was far too lax in allowing them to borrow thousands of euros to pay for their flying schools while there is little prospect of finding work.

'We estimate there are 1,200 to 1,300 unemployed pilots,' Evert van Zwol of the pilots' associaiton VNV told the broadcaster.

Interest rates

The cost of becoming a qualified commercial pilot can mount up to €150,000, which generates around €1,000 in interest a month. ABN Amro is the only Dutch bank to offer loans to trainee pilots.

'The law states that you have to give young people with little financial knowledge extended information and point out the risks. Unfortunately, that did not happen in the cases I am concerned with,' lawyer Frank Olberts told RTL news.

He represents the seven unemployed pilots who say they will take legal action if efforts to reach an out of court settlement fail.

ABN Amro has dismissed the charges out of hand, the broadcaster said.

© DutchNews.nl


Readers' Comments

Sorry to back ABN on this but didn't these pilots go to school and/or have a proper upbringing and be taught by their parents what the risks of borrowing money are, no matter what the reason? There are other professions out there (doctors, vets to name just two) who also have staggering debts after they graduate.

By Michael K | 9 January 2013 3:06 PM

This reminds me of my job. Company on the edge of bankruptcy and the employees are suing the employer for not getting the full bonus (but still getting a bonus). The employees actually won that case.

By Stefan | 9 January 2013 3:33 PM

"give young people with little financial knowledge extended information and point out the risks"

Easy: you have to pay money back at a certain point.

It cannot be easier than that.

By joanna | 9 January 2013 3:34 PM

The ABN-Amro love to persuade people to take it's (very) dodgy financial services. It then uses that as an excuse to asset strip them later. I wish the pilots all the luck in this case. The sooner the government recognises the ABN-AMRO for the dishonest menace it really is, the sooner we can get the country out of recession.

By Andy | 9 January 2013 3:55 PM

@ Joanna, since these "kids" were raised to expect free travel on the cost of the taxpayers, can we really be surprised they are shocked by reality when they actually graduate? I don't know what they are taught in Dutch schools....

By Michael K | 9 January 2013 5:30 PM

Yes the loan that ABN AMRO gives out to young aspiring pilots is extremely high, and even higher at the interest rates, of at least 5.5%. But they are banks...it's what they do, no matter how wrong it may seem. The problem lies with the flight school that continue to enroll hundreds of students to get prepared for a job market that is non existent. More than 1000 pilots in Holland alone are with out a job. And very few have the opportunity, or search for them outside of the EU....

By Juan | 9 January 2013 8:59 PM

Dutch pilots are considered sufficiently responsible to assume responsibility for hundreds of passengers but say they aren't sufficiently mature to figure out that they'll have to repay a loan they take? Now that's scary!

By Drawer 22 | 9 January 2013 9:47 PM

It is more of a global economy situation rather than a bank problem. If there are many more openings looking for pilots, will they pay more interest to the bank?

By ufo | 10 January 2013 8:25 AM

if u are sick u go to doc they the experts. if u need money u go to bank they are the 'experts'. we cant asume everyone knows what money is, banks know they need to be carefull with loans.

By coli | 10 January 2013 8:35 AM

@Μichael K, i do back your comment but at least in EU (as far as i know) it is free or you pay a symbolic amount of fees to study medicine if you meet the academic criteria, so how was this debt generated? Probably lifestyle?

By kos | 10 January 2013 9:38 AM

Having lived now in Holland 8 years I have noticed at the end of any commercial promoting lending of money (ie house or car loan) they always say "lending money COSTS money."... I've learned to be much more thrifty since moving here thanks to many good Dutch examples around me. How is it these born and raised Dutchies are claiming they "didn't know"?

By kendar_of_the_north | 10 January 2013 11:28 AM

@coli, let's just say that it were doctors in this situation (a surprise of graduates for a finite number of jobs). Would you excuse them for not knowing enough about economics and condone them suing a bank for not adequately warning them? Last time I looked at ANY institution that lends money they WARN you that lending money costs money. I've never seen such warnings in North America (were incidentally students are also charged above prime for student loans!!!)

By Michael K | 10 January 2013 4:52 PM

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