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El blog de Maria

Your daily Spanish Law reporter. Have it with a cafe con leche.

Legal tip 1074. Barcelona and right interpretation of Law 57/68
26 November 2013

It was comforting to read this Case Law by Court 11 of Barcelona Appeal Court where it clearly states that rules regulating off plan purchases ion Spain are not those of the Civil Code ( 112 Cc4-1827Cc) but those contained in the special Law 57/68 which was expressly promulgated to regulate these businesses.

Property should have been delivered ( with licenses of course) by first quarter of of 2010 and by February 2011 has not been delivered: equation is clear and simple ( says the Barcelona Court Decission) 

A very short and clear Court Decission which does not go to analysis of facts according to 1124 and related Case Law. 

Very wise, very contundent!

Against doctrine of our Supreme Court, which says that deadline is not essential. 

The whole point of Law 57/67 is built of delivery dates and consequences of delay. How deadline cannot be essential then?

Legal advice

Zahara de la Sierra, Cadiz, South of Spain, at


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Legal tip 1073. It took just one month to have work permit
26 November 2013

We are celebrating today with a client in CostaLuz.

It took for her just one month to get her work permit as an autonomous worker in Spain! She is from Russia.

Legal advice

Vejer de la Frontera, Cadiz, Costa de la Luz, South western Spain, at

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Legal tip 1072. Are these dealings binding? Precontract of property purchase in Spain
26 November 2013

You are negotiating the purchase of a property and suddenly, the buyer choses to sell it to someone else. Is there anything I can do?

It depends:

a) If you did not agree on property and price nor set a day for signing the contract. There is not much you can do unless you can proof clear damages arised from the will change of the buyer. In this case, you could claim compensation.

b) If you already agreed on property and price and were just waiting for a moment to sign the contract or even more if you had already set a date for signing the purchase contract, you do have rights to compel the counterparty to sell the property to you at the agreed price. Even fs not deposit has been paid yet. This is what it is called a "Precontract of sale" ( provision 1451 of the Spanish Civil Code)

c) Buying-option is an agreed and signed contract by which the buyer is given a period of time to finally buying a property.Price can be closed or open to be set. It generally is perfomed with a rental contract being vigent during the time before the option date.

d) Sales contract: Object, price and wills of sale and purchase are agreed and signed.

e) Public Deed of Sale: Purchase contract is notarised so it can enter the Land Registry and buyer obtain full ownership safety before third parties. 

Legal advice

Setenil de las Bodegas, Cadiz, Southwestern Spain, at

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Legal tip 1071. Spanish Judges in the UK and the USA
25 November 2013

As times require. Global village. We are all one.

The Council of Ministers in SPain , at the proposal of  Minister of Justice , Alberto Ruiz- Gallardón, has decided to  strengthen presence of our Judicial body in the international arena with the appointment of a liaison magistrate in London to act before the judicial authorities of the United Kingdom and the forthcoming appointment of a Minister of Justice at the Embassy of Spain in America. The Council has also given the green light to the appointment of an Ad Hoc judge candidate for the European Court of Human Rights.

The appointment of a liaison magistrate in London, which itself has long had a counterpart in Spain , so far correspond to the member of the General Council of the Judiciary ( GCJ ) Miguel Carmona.

Spain has liaison judges in France and Italy currently, as well as a director of Legal Cooperation in Rabat. Role of these is to strengthen legal cooperation and coordination between Spain and each of those countries , which from now on will also include the UK and the U.S. While relations with both countries are good, the government considers essential to strengthen legal cooperation with both specific and provide legal assistance to the embassies of both countries , as in the Anglo-Saxon system governs  Common Law system, this link judge will provide direct contact and support for adaptation and confluence of that system with Spanish law.

Legal advice

Flour Mill in Jimena de la Frontera, Cadiz, South of Spain, at

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Legal tip 1070. EU foreign family members ID
22 November 2013

Family members of a citizen of a State member of the EU or a State party in the Agreement on EEA who are not nationals of one of the aforementioned States , when accompanying or meeting him/her, will be allowed to reside in Spain for a period of time superior to three months ,being  subject to the duty of  requesting and obtaining  a          " residence card for a relative of a EU citizen”.

There are initial permist for 5 years and  and permanent cards from 10 years on.

The application needs to be made before the Foreign Citizens Office , Headquarters of the Police or Police Station of the town where he/she wants to stay or have his/her residence

Competent body to solve this procedure are Subdelegates of the Government or Government Delegates in the one- province autonomous communities which will resolve in a maximum period of 3 months.

Legal advice

The Natural Park of the Alcornocales, Cádiz, South of Spain, at





















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Legal tip 1069. Life is better in Spain- OCDE
21 November 2013

Letters in green today... yeap!

These are reports I enjoy reading every couple of years as they measure  quality life of member countries with a wider approach:

Together with traditional macro data ( average income, unemployment rate, school success), OCDE takes into account more personal - and relative- factors such as safety feeling, subjective satisfaction with life, strength of family bonds, together with other obectivable but not economic factors such as quality of environement, popular participation in politics and possibilities for work-family balance. 

If you are curious, read and tell us what you think:

You... come and join us on building a better country.

Legal advice

Sanlúcar de Barrameda, Cádiz, Costa de la Luz, South western Spain, at

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Legal tip 1068. My debts on the board? Is it legal?
19 November 2013

Well, it depends...

JUST IF/ As an extraordinary mean under certain requisites

We explain

Provision 16 of the Horizontal Property Act provides that the agenda for the General Meeting must contain: 

 " a list of owners who are not updated in  payment of community fees".

The Spanish Agency for Data Protection considers " a good practice any single call notification either by mail, by  box mailing , by intranet with username and password , and all those which avoids access of third parties" 

Both the call to the meeting  as the list of debtors neighbors , can get in the physical ' message board ' of the community as long as no one out side the community have access to it.

Nevertheless, there is one exception, which is established in Provision 9 of the Horizontal Property Act :" If the attempted notification or cal

(1)l were impossible to practice at the place prevented in the preceding paragraph, it will be made by placing the corresponding communication on the bulletin board of the community, or in a visible place commonly used for such purpose ,

(2)diligently explaining the date and reasons for which we proceed to this form of notice ,

(3)signed by the person acting as secretary of the community, with the approval of the President . ( ... ) "

So, in few words, if access of third parties is possible, Community Board cannot be used as a general rule. Just if any other mean of communication has failed, a very precise and respectful use of this mean is considered legal by the Horizontal Property Act.

 Date presented must be truthful , it should be remembered that the ' right to honor ' is a so-called ' fundamental rights ' recognized by the Spanish Constitution in provision 18.

Legal advice

Grazalema, Cadiz, South of Spain, at

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Legal tip 1067. CostaLuz Lawyers´ energy
15 November 2013

Received this JEWEL today. Wanted to share:

Sorry this has taken me so long but I’m emailing you in response to your request for a testimonial hope it’s not too long;

I just wanted to say thank-you very much to you and your colleagues for all your help with my Dacion in Spain. I was in a very difficult situation with Caja Murcia bank who provided me with a mortgage in 2005 to buy a 2 bed apartment which became toxic and I could no longer afford the payments due to various reasons. Hence I was very stressed and needed assistance and didn’t know what to do. Everybody knows the Spanish economy especially the property market has been in crisis for a number of years as a result of global recession and inflated property prices as well as reckless lending by banks. The bubble was created by a fictitious market of foreign investors promised good rental returns and a new healthier lifestyle in the sun. Unfortunately I had a Spanish mortgage which I could not afford and whilst property prices were decreasing rapidly my mortgage was actually increasing over time so I was stuck. Luckily a good friend of my family recommended Costa Luz Lawyers and at first I didn’t want to lose any more money. However due to the recommendation I was willing to take a chance as all other options were closed to me. Maria was responsible for my case and gave a very personal service explaining the whole legal process clearly and allowing me to skype her or call her when I wanted and at a time convenient for me. She was always professional responding quickly to my questions and was able to speak and email me in English which was vital. There were a few issues with understanding the final payment and settling utility bills but in the end it was worth it. I was very pleased after about 6 months of negotiations with the bank they finally agreed to a Dacion which Costaluz is obviously very experienced in handling. This stressful situation could have been a lot worse for me but Costaluz managed to keep me positive and gave me confidence that everything could work out for me. Costaluz did not promise me too much but delivered a lot in the end for which I am very grateful. I would not hesitate to recommend Costaluz to anyone in a similar situation and I am sure they would deal with any property issue in Spain effectively and to the best of their abilities.




Legal advice

"Castle of Guzmán El Bueno, Tarifa, Cadiz, Costa de la Luz, South western Spain, at

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Legal tip 1066. Court secretaries and Keys back to Bank
14 November 2013

As part of their formation programms, Court Secretaries in Spain are demanding new rules for better judgement processes on Mortgage enforcements and repossessions.

They are asking for continued consultations with lawyers of people affected by Mortgage problems and for the process to give property back to the Bank to be revised.

Good, people oriented approach! Applause!


Legal advice

A street of Zahara de la Sierra, Cadiz, South of Spain, at

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Legal tip 1065. Love and teamwork
13 November 2013

After several days of team revision, struggles, reflection and work, I  can conclude now and wanted to share it with you:

There is no bigger strength for a company than real union between members of the team. This is not easy and we cannot take it for granted. As every form of human relationship, it needs to be rediscovered and worked through periodically. All members need to re-fall in love with team work and the work of the team once and again so we can see full sense of our working together. So we can get to be fully convinced  on beauty and good of team work. Motivation comes after this.  Without love, there is no conviction, no motivation, no team.

Legal advice

Grazalema, Cádiz, South of Spain, at

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Legal tip 1064. More on Illegal mortgages
12 November 2013

Not because of ground floor neither because mortgages being granted to a buyer on a house without First Occupation License. 

Illegal mortgages for being knowingly granted by the Bank to  someone who is not the holder of all ownership rights on the house. Of course to someone who is a debtor of the Bank and therefore, Bank is financially benefitted by the illegal granting. 

 Banks taking advantage of the fact that off plan purchase contracts do not get registered in the land registry.

Another angle of corrupt behaviour of some Banks during the real estate boom and over financing.

Again, a behaviour that can be punished by good aplication of Law 57/68

Battle keeps being on... and will be for many years ahead


Legal advice

Street of Tarifa, Cádiz, Costa de la Luz, Southwestern Spain, at

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Legal tip 1063. IHT Tax benefits for disabled in Andalucia
08 November 2013

An old post, from 2009, which has been reanimated these days. 

From 2010, this reduction for disabled people, which applies to inheritances but not to gifts is under these requisites:

a) Disabled needs have to be legally declared

b) Taxable amount in regards of IHT tax is no higher than 250.000€ 

Have a great weekend!


 Legal tip 170. 4 conditions to pay 0 € for IHT in Andalucia

26 October 2009 @ 15:21

As expressed in a recent Andalusian decree dated September 2009: the reduction of the taxable amount will be total, which means you will be paying zero as IHT if:

Condition One) Being a resident in Andalucia:

Condition Two) you are, in respect to the deceased:

Group I: A descendant or an adopted children under twenty one.
Group II: A descendant or adopted children of more than twenty one years/old, a spouse, an ascendant or an adopter.

Or assimilated:

a. Domestic partnerships registered within the Register of partners of the Andalusian region. ( regarded as spouses)

b. Persons subject to a permanent or pre-adoptive foster care. ( regarded as adopted)

c. People who make a permanent or pre-adoptive foster care ( regarded as adopters)

Condition Three) IHT Taxable amount does not exceed 175,000 euros.

Condition Four) The preexisting patrimony of the taxpayer falls within the first tranche of the scale set out in Article 22 of Act 29/1987 of 18 December. (402.678, 11 €)

The amount of the reduction of the taxable amount will consist of a variable amount whose application determines a payable amount of zero.

Handicapped will pay 0€ if the IHT taxable amount does not exceed 250.000 €.

Legal advice



 Autumn. Aranjuez. Spain by Martius at



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Allen said:
07 November 2013 @ 09:34

We are retired and live in Spain, in Malaga, Andalucía, and have done, permanently since January 2006, with our 26 year old daughter, who is disabled.

We all hold Residencia and have done for seven years, and own our property outright.

I understand there is a 'Gift' process, whereby we can ‘Gift’ our house to our daughter and that we would possibly ? have to pay ‘Gift’ taxes and transfer fees etc to carry out this process legally. I have also read that as she is registered in Spain as disabled (69%), the tax threshold is higher for a disabled person.

My question is, if we legally make a gift of our house to our daughter, once completed, is this process permanent and irreversible and without any possibility, in the future, of anyone or any authority reversing the process later ?

I also need to be concretely re-assured that it is a safe and permanent solution. I do not wish to find out, after it is done, that it can be undone and transferred back by any legal process, for whatever reason, either here or in the UK.

Bringing up a disabled child is hard enough, the future is the most worrying thing to both myself and my wife. We just wish to iron clad our daughters future, that she is not caught up in legal processes she will not understand.

When the time comes and we are no longer here, she will be capable of living a simple life, on her own, with friends and relatives help. She loves Spain and would not wish to be taken back to the UK where she would undoubtedly be put in ‘care’ or similar.
We know that, for her, dealing with Inheritance Tax etc and future legalities would be something of a problem.

I await your reply and may I take this opportunity to thank you for your attention,




Wendy said:
08 November 2013 @ 09:58

I too am very interested in this question as I have a disabled son and live in Spain.



mariadecastro said:
08 November 2013 @ 10:06

Dear Allen:

Of course the gift that you make to your daughter is irreversible by any Authority.

Please let us know if you ever need help in ralation to your disabled daughter. We wil be very pleased to assist you with that.

Kindest regards,





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Legal tip 1062. Two videos we watched with our team coach
05 November 2013

We are dreaming of a little enterpreneurs atelier in the area... who is joining us?

Legal advice

Foto: Buenos dias Tarifa ... Tarifa, Cadiz, Costa de la Luz, South western Spain, at

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Legal tip 1061. Work with our team coach
03 November 2013

Meeting tomorrow from 9.30 to 1.30 to work with our team coach...

We will tell you about this!



Legal advice

La Alcaidesa Panorama, Cadiz, Southern Spain, by _kcu, at

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