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Mortgage Floor Clauses

On the 21 December 2016, the European Court of Justice produced a Judgment, in relation to mortgage loans and the limitations set by the Spanish Supreme Court, regarding the unfair practice of clauses relating to minimum interest rates. The Bank of Spain has estimated...

New Law on Citizen Security

This is one of the most controversial laws of the last 10 years. It came into force on the 1st July 2015 under the general condemnation of the opposition parties.

Ownership of Firearms in Spain

The Legislation on the use and ownership of firearms in Spain is probably one of the most restrictive in Europe. This is included in the Spanish constitution under article 149.26 where it is said that the Spanish government has exclusive competence control over production, sale, possession and use of firearms and explosives.

Divorce in Spain – planning and first steps

In cases of irretrievable breakdown of a marriage sometimes the only solution is to file for a divorce. Spain has one of the most comprehensive and fair family laws in Europe making the process quick and easy, moreover Spanish law doesn’t require stating a reason for the divorce and the process can be initiated by a single party.

Non-profit Associations in Spain

Spanish law defines an association as “a group of people who enter into an agreement, in order to accomplish a common objective with a non -profit motive, independent (at least formally) from government, public administration, political parties and companies.” National associations are regulated by Law 1/2002 of the 22 March and by royal decree 1497/2003 of the 28 November.

New law on judicial costs in Spain

On the 20th of November the Spanish parliament approved law 10/2012 on the taxation of judicial proceedings. In short this law will introduce an additional fee every time that someone initiates a legal proceeding in: the Civil court, the Labour court and courts dealing with public disputes. Not affected are the criminal courts and the military court (criminal cases represent approximately 70% of all legal proceedings in Spain).

Credit blacklists and consumer protection in Spain

The current economic climate has led to an increase in people and companies going into bad debts all over Europe. This has in turn fostered the emergence of “credit blacklists”, where people and companies that have defaulted payments are recorded. In principle credit blacklists are tools intended to help assessing the risk of financial and commercial transactions. Therefore, they are instruments with a legitimate and useful objective, helping to safeguard the economy.

EU citizen’s residency in Spain and European Parliament Directive 2004/38/EC

The European Parliament directive 2004/38/EC clearly set the conditions under which a citizen from one of the countries of the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland can reside in a different member state (EEA is the European Union plus Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway). EEA citizens and family members have the right to move freely and reside in different EEA countries, nevertheless for stays over three months there are several conditions that have to be met.

Advantages of getting residency in Spain and the new rules applicable

There are several reasons to became resident in Spain, specially is you are thinking about selling your property, which include: If you are fiscal resident in Spain, and over 65 years of age, you are no subject to capital gain tax when you sell your property under the condition that it was your main residency for the previous three years.

Divorce without frontiers

According to Eurostat, more than one million divorces are filed every year within the 27 countries of the EU; 13% of which involved citizens of different European nationalities. This state of affairs encouraged the European Commission to start a harmonisation programme with the objective of simplifying legal procedures for separation and divorces of couples with different EU nationalities.

Domestic Violence in Spain

Domestic violence is an important social problem in Spain. It is a type of physical or psychological violence which occurs within a household or an intimate relationship for example within a marriage, a family or cohabitation or even when dating. Domestic violence has many forms, including physical aggression but emotional abuse, intimidation; stalking and depravation of freedom are all forms of domestic violence. Even though the victims of domestic violence are predominantly women, children and elderly people are vulnerable and can also be victims.

Common Law Marriages and Annulments (parejas de hecho)

Statistics show that all over Europe the traditional family is changing and the institution of marriage is giving way to different models of coexistence, for example common law marriages. Both common law and traditional marriages bind two individuals together and...

Inheritance for foreigners in Spain

When a foreign citizen owning assets in Spain dies, there are several things that the heirs need to know in order to properly process the inheritance of the Spanish possessions. A common mistake is to process the inheritance in the home country forgetting to handle...

Getting Divorced in Spain

When a marriage breaks down there are various factors that need to be borne in mind regarding the separation of assets and custody of children.  Filing for divorce at court can be done either with mutual agreement or contentiously.  You have to have been married for a...

The Consumer Arbitration System in Spain

The consumer arbitration system in Spain (Sistema Arbitral de Consumo) is an instrument enabling the effective and rapid resolution of disputes between consumers and companies or professionals concerning consumer products and services. It is regulated by the royal...

Consumer rights in the travel and tourism industry in Spain

In Spain the travel industry is regulated by several laws and most importantly the “Ley de Defensa de Consumidores y Usuarios” (law for consumer protection). The law is regularly updated in order to adapt to new channels (internet for example) and to the ever-changing...

Gestational carriers, Surrogacy and womb rental: The law in Spain

In legal terms Surrogacy (“alquiler de vientres” in Spanish) is the practice related to one or more persons (generally a couple) hiring a woman (the gestational surrogate) for the gestation and delivery of a child conceived through assisted reproduction. In this...

Laws against domestic animal cruelty in Andalucía and Spain

There is a well-structured system of laws for animal protection and welfare in Spain. On the one hand, the central government is responsible for the laws related to wildlife protection, sanctions for animal abuse at all levels, sanitary requirements for domestic and...

Accident responsibility in Spain

In cases of accidents it is often quite difficult to know if the victim is entitled to compensation and in most situations it is impossible to automatically determine the responsibilities of the different parties involved without the intervention of a judge. The...

International Child Abduction

It is quite common to hear about separated parents living in different countries where one parent denies the return of a child after a temporary parental visit.  Spain protects parents who have child custody and who are residents in Spain through their national laws,...

Adoption Process in Spain

Adoption in Spain is a legal process that follows very strict rules in order to protect the interest of the child to the fullest. Law 21/1997 of 11th November introduced several requirements for parents requesting adoption and the adopted child, both nationally and...

Enforcement of Foreign Judgments

It is becoming common nowadays to see lawyers from countries in the EU requiring the enforcement of sentences passed by tribunals in other EU countries. As an example if your debtor has moved to Spain leaving no assets in his home country, you can still obtain the...

Acquiring and Losing Spanish Nationality

There are different ways to acquire Spanish Nationality and these include: When Spain is your country of origin Nationality by adoption Nationality by residence Nationality by naturalisation Nationality by choice Nationality by presumption Spain is your country of...

The right to compensation for damages caused by town halls

Question: Do we have the right to compensation for damages caused by town halls as a result of work that they have carried out? Yes, many town halls regulate grants with bylaws or municipal ordinances for help towards compensation. Where the works are for public use...

Intestacy: What to do when there is no Will

When a person dies intestate (i.e. without a will) and owns property or assets of any kind, the process that should be followed is complicated and can take time.  The inheritance process in Spain should be completed within six months, so it is best contact your lawyer...

Spanish Wills – It is really important to have one

Perhaps if you are wondering whether or not it is worth writing a Will in Spain it would help to know that if you haven’t done so already, you run the risk of your heirs losing their rights to your assets if they do not claim their inheritance in time or if your Last...

Rental agreement dispute with landlord

Clients Question: Question: We handed the money for a deposit for the rental of an apartment, the owner verbally agreed the conditions and told us that his lawyer would prepare the contract.  Some days later the owner gave us the contract already signed by him, and we...

Complaints regarding the service provided by telephone companies

The first thing that you should do when you have a complaint is to contact the complaints department or the customer services department for your operator, within a month from when the problem begins or from the date that you receive the bill if the claim is about the...

What to do in case of death

Although it’s definitely not a nice subject, we have to face the reality that one day we might be confronted with the death of one of our relatives. First things to do If the death occurs in hospital, the hospital administration will take care of the initial...

Christmas Toys

Christmas is coming and already the television is full of advertisements, trying to tempt children, to persuade their parents to buy the wonderful toys that are on sale. Parents on the other hand should keep some fundamental points in mind when they go to buy these...

Skiing accidents

Skiing holidays are becoming ever more popular and with more people on the ski slopes the likelihood of an accident is also on the increase.  A surprising fact is that over 10% of skiers and snowboarders will start their holiday without any travel insurance.  You...

What is an Embargo?

Legally an embargo or a tax lien, is a court or public administration declaration which affects certain property or rights which have an economic value or content, to enforce  a pecuniary obligation which has already been declared (executive embargo) or one that is...

Inscribing Births in Spain

Contrary to the norm in other countries, when a child is born on Spanish territory, their nationality is determined by that of the parents (ius sanguinis) and not by the place of birth (ius solis). But what happens when one of the parents is Spanish and the other is...

Marriage in Spain

Foreigners can be married in Spain, in a civil or religious ceremony, provided that one of them is either a resident or registered in the municipality (empadronado) where they wish to be married. It is sometimes permitted for a couple to be married even though neither...