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Tumbit : Jo Green - Having a Baby in Spain

Jo Green, 34, has been living & working in Spain with her long term partner for 5 years. As a "Professional Career Woman" in the UK she always believed that being a Mum was something that happened to other women. However, on moving to Spain she has found herself succesfully managing a career and being a full time Mum to an unplanned (but much loved) Baby Daughter. Things in life change, things don't go to plan... Jo tell's how it's those that can and are willing to adapt to change that generally succeed in making a life in Spain.

SUMA Property Taxes Bring A Nasty Surprise !
23 August 2010 @ 17:23

Perhaps it is the traditionalist in me, or perhaps I am am being too English in my outlook, but I consider it fair play only to pay for goods and services that I have used and no more.

I have lived in my Finca now for 5 years, and in that period of time the yearly SUMA bill has not once been correct – sometimes it includes costs for neighbouring properties ( 3 different Catastro references on the SUMA bill in my name ? ) and sometimes it lists me, entirely incorrectly, as being a Farm – and as such this carries a much higher charge than a building that is not used for commercial purposes – like a House.

Every year I have sent the details back to my Asesor, along with my reasons for not paying, and every year he has contacted the SUMA office on my behalf to sort this mess out.

Every year the response comes back that, yes, they hear my concerns and will change their database accordingly and send me out the correct SUMA bill for payment as soon as …

For the last 3 years this has not been the case – no corrected bill was ever sent out to me, and instead the following May I have received the current year’s bill (still incorrect) along with the bill for last year (completely unchanged), but to add insult to this a penalty fee and interest rates have been added to this.

Each year, at my Asesor’s suggestion, I have simply not paid the bill, as I am waiting for the correct bill to be re-calculated. Am I perhaps being typically English and a little niave in expecting that the interest charges and penalty fees for the last 3 years will be waived?

I hold onto my faith that things will eventually get resolved, but every year when I receive the compiled Bill including all fees and penalties my heart sinks as I know that sooner or later things will come to a head.

That call came in this morning – the Head of Outstanding Debt at the provincial SUMA head office in Alicante called me demanding money before court action would take place ! Of course they denied all knowledge of any querie on my file, and stated that at this stage in the proceedings, because of the term of ‘non-payment ‘and because no official complaint about the details being incorrect were on my file, I would be unlikely to be able to appeal about the full amount being demanded.

Next time you receive a SUMA bill please check that the Catastro reference is for your property, and please check that that your property is correctly classified as soon as you possibly can !



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Tony Evans said:
13 July 2012 @ 11:42

In 2008 my wife and l formed a Spanish company (Enclaves Paisajisticos SL) to own a piece of land of about 14,000 m2 in an area known as Benimarco in the Spanish municipal of Benissa, Alicante that we had purchased from its German owner.

Our original idea was to construct a lovely house there to live in.

When the good years changed to recession (or depression in Spain) a number of the municipal Town Halls in this area, known as the Valencian Costa Blanca, decided to change the classification of much land to URBANA (Urbanisable URBAN land) which meant overnight they were able to bill land owners annually TWENTY TIMES, OR MORE, the original land ratings tax than was paid before by them.

In general this was a SCAM to enable “cash strapped” Town Halls to raise more money, based on the theory that the value of this URBAN land rose overnight and therefore their ratings tax income was entitled to rise accordingly, however as is the case with the land we have in Benimarco, its a “large lump of steep stone mountain”, and the cost to urbanize (or put in an infrastructure) with new roads, paths, street lights, mains electricity, etc, etc would cost millions of euro’s to do, and of course with no buyers for the resultant plots of land at the end of the day.

These new laws that permitted the Town Halls to do this were called the LRAU and more recently LUV (Law Urban Valencian) known more widely in the corridors of Brussels as “THE LAND GRAB LAWS” due to the fact if a land owner did not “play ball” the land was taken away from him/her normally against his/her will. It also meant that without the infrastructure NOTHING COULD BE BUILT ON THAT LAND – Not even a private dwelling.

I might add that both the previous and the later “more expensive” annual land rating taxes have always been paid in full, (and on time), for the land we have in Benimarco.

Then “Out of blue” on 23.03.2012 our company received, in its name, by registered post an INCREASED VALUE URBAN LAND TAX BILL (known as PLUS VALIA), a copy of which is attached, in the sum of 6,079.92 euro’s from SUMA a tax collection agency based in Alicante, employed by the Town Hall of Benissa?

This one-off “urban sales tax” (Plus Valia) in the Spanish Law (Law R.D.L. 2/2004 5.03.04 LRHL) is a tax on THE SELLER and to be PAID BY THE SELLER of the land (in our case the German).

Our lawyer drafted a registered letter to the authorities (which my wife signed on 10.05.2012), a copy of which is attached, explaining that we were the BUYERS and it was the GERMAN who had sold us the land and therefore responsible for this tax under Spanish law, (He also pointed out that the NOTARY who signed the deeds of the property stated therein that in accordance with Spanish Law any PLUS VALIA TAX resulting from the sale to us was the entire liability of the GERMAN SELLER) and asked them to re-address the bill direct to the SELLER.

This registered letter has been totally ignored and on 11.06.2012 SUMA sent us (and once again in the name of OUR COMPANY) by registered post yet another INCREASED VALUE URBAN LAND TAX BILL (PLUS VALIA), a copy of which is attached, but THIS TIME IT WAS FOR 6,691,56 euro’s and for US TO PAY yet again??

Our lawyer says that under Spanish Law SUMA as agents for the Town Hall of Benissa can (without even needing a Court Order) take the money, without our consent, and at any time they want from our Spanish bank account and if there is not sufficient funds available (to meet the Germans taxes and their charges in full), then charge and sell off our land by public auction over our heads, it seems that because the German Seller is not a Spanish resident, there is little he can do to protect us?

As there are NOT sufficient funds in the account we now face LOOSING OUR LAND TO PAY OFF THE GERMAN SELLERS TAX BILL, (which by the way he has never been sent a copy of, or given the opportunity of paying)?

Interestingly if the Town Hall had not changed the classification to URBAN LAND they would not be in a position to claim any TAX FOR PLUS VALIA (through their agents SUMA) or the increase in the annual land ratings tax because BOTH of these taxes apply to URBAN (TO BE URBANISED) LAND ONLY as dictated by Spanish Law R.D.L. 2/2004 5.03.04 LRHL.

This is a fundamental breach of our human rights and the misinterpretation and bad administration of Spanish legislation resulting from NON COMPLIANCE OF BOTH TAX AND HUMAN RIGHTS EUROPEAN LEGISLATION by the Spanish authorities and their agents SUMA of Alicante.




carpetjohn said:
08 March 2016 @ 06:36

AFTER LIVING IN MY HOUSE SINCE 2002 AND PAYING ALL MY SUMA;S IN FULL AND ON TIME MY IBI WAS REASSESED IN 2014 FOR THE YEARS 2010 TO 2013 WHICH ACTUALLY TRANSPIRED THAT I WAS ACTUALLY 10 EUROS IN CREDIT, TIS DID NOT HAVE ANY BEARING ON SUMA INVOICE WHICH WAS FOR 3,300 EUROS PLUS LATE PAYMENT AND INTEREST TO A TOTAL OF 4,350 EUROS, I HAVE BEEN INTO SUMA OFFICE COUNTLESS TIMES AND THEY AGREE I PAID ALL MY SUMA:S ON TIME BUT IT HAD TO BE PAID INCLUDING THE CHARGES AND THE CLAIM THE PAYMENTS I MADE BETWEEN 2010 AND 2013 BACK TOLD THEM I WAS NOT PREPARED TO DO THIS AND WENT TO THE OMBUDSMAN WHO TOTALLY AGREED WITH ME AND WROTE TO THEM ON MY BEHALF ON 2 SEPERATE OCCASIONS TO WHICH THEY HAVE TOTALLY IGNORED, THEN YESTERDAY I RECEIVED A LETTER FROM THEM STATING THEY WOULD REPAY ME THE 3,300 EUROS PLUS INTEREST OF 609,5 EUROS BUT I THEN HAD TO PAY THEM THE 4,350 EUROS IN EFFECT PAYING THEM IN THE REGION OF 400 EUROS FOR THERE MISTAKES, NO WAY AM I PREPARED TO DO THIS AND HAVE MADE AN APPOINTMENT TO SEE A SOLICITOR TODAY, WHO DO THESE PEOPLE THINK THEY ARE THAT THEY CAN TRYAND RIDE ROUGHSHOD OVER EVERYONE?


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