The mortgage secured a debt of pounds 2,900 owing by the mortgagor to the mortgagee. The mortgagor covenanted to pay the mortgagee pounds 4,553 by monthly instalments over a six year period. The return to the mortgagee was in the form of a premium rather than a specified interest rate. The mortgage also provided that the full premium should become payable upon the mortgagor’s default. The premium was effectively 57% of the amount of the loan, and had the effect of making the interest rate upon default an amount of 38%.
Held: The court can take into account such issues as the identity of the mortgagor when looking at any assertion of undue influence. A necessitous borrower may be overborne by a more powerful lender in circumstances giving rise to unconscionability on the part of the lender. Whilst there was no rule in equity precluding a lender from stipulating for a collateral advantage that was fair and reasonable, the charging of a premium of this order had the effect of destroying the borrower’s equity in the security, and that such a collateral advantage was in the circumstances unconscionable.
 Ch 166
England and Wales
Applied – G and C Kreglinger v The New Patagonian Meat and Cold Storage Company HL 20-Nov-1913
Mortgagor’s collateral dvantage is not a clog
The appellant woolbrokers had lent the respondent andpound;10,000 with a floating charge over its undertaking. The loan agreement provided that, for five years, the appellants would have first refusal over all sheepskins sold by the company. The . .
Cited – Multiservice Bookbinding Ltd v Marden ChD 1978
To have a transaction set aside as a harsh and unconscionable bargain, a party would have to show not only that the terms of the transaction were harsh or oppressive, but also moral unfairness. Browne-Wilkinson J said: ‘In my judgment a bargain . .
Cited – Brighton and Hove City Council v Audus ChD 26-Feb-2009
The claimant was the proprietor of a fourth legal charge on a title. It sought a declaration that a second charge in favour of the defendant was void as a clog on the proprietor’s equity of redemption. An advance secured by a first charge, also in . .
These lists may be incomplete.
Updated: 08 May 2021; Ref: scu.219907