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El blog de Maria

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

Legal tip 1118. NEW! Recent Court Decission on Timeshare refunds
26 February 2014

By Pontevedra Appeal Court on last 18th of December 2013:

" Therefore, the contract does not include , the obligatory data according to Law: date of granting of deeds, authorizing Notary and registration reference in the Land Registry"

All this leads  to understand that the contract is void for contravening  provisions of Articles 1 , 3 and 4 of Law 42/1998 and that the Timeshare company needs to refund all payments made by the claimant. 

Costa Luz Left

Tui (Pontevedra)-2, Galice, North western Spain, at flickr.com

 



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Legal tip 1117. International Health and Spain merits
25 February 2014

Recently approved (on last 7th of February, 2013 ), Royal Decree incorporating Directive 2011/24/EU on the application of patients' rights in cross-border healthcare 

Content: Under this directive , patients from European Union countries may go to a different Member State for health care by advancing the payment of services they receive. They can request the corresponding refund from their own country afterwards. This health care exchange requires certain conditions and, for some treatments,  prior authorization . The spirit of this Directive responds to the free movement of people, goods and services in the EU

Among the goals of the Royal Decree are ensuring access to a secure and high quality cross-border healthcare, ensuring patients mobility and encouraging health cooperation between Spain and the rest of the EU.

So far, it had not been regulated the fact of travelling to another  europeam member state for the express purpose of receiving health care, which is what this Directive gathers.

Attendance is understood in its broadest sense, including drugs and health products.

Long-term care , organ transplants and public vaccination programs are excluded . Reimbursement shall conform to official rates of each health service, as if the treatment had been provided in Spain .

Prior authorisation is needed in two cases:

- When attention involves hospitalization of at least one night .
- When  treatments require  highly specialized and expensive equipment or thechnology

Rights of patients covered by the Royal Decree:

1. To obtain copies of clinical reports , diagnostic tests and therapeutic procedures.
2. To continuity of treatment after being assisted elsewhere .
3. To personal data protection

4. To have at their disposal all the necessary information through the National Contact Point .

This Royal Decree also establishes a series of measures to advance the cooperation between Spain and the European Union:

Share of information about health professionals, for which the Ministry of Health, Social Services and Equality. The Directive provides for the establishment of a European Network of Reference Centres which  will particularly benefit people with rare diseases , which may appeal to a specialized center in another country.

Spain actively participates also in the European eHealth Network . Spain leads the project of e- health in the European Union , thanks to the success of its implementation. Spain also participates in the European Network for Health Technology Assessment , which will promote the exchange of scientific information between States.

In short, the Directive is incorporated by Royal Decree approved today provides an opportunity to strengthen and standardize criteria and requirements for quality , safety and health provision , to ensure equal access to health care within the European Union. Spain joins the most developed countries of the EU border assistance and , in turn, goes a step further in improving the care of people who need more specialized treatments such as those affected by rare diseases.

Costa Luz Left

Bolonia, Tarifa, Cádiz, Costa de la Luz, South western Spain, at facebook.com



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Legal tip 1116. SpanishReforms.com
21 February 2014

A nice reading for the weekend

Cheers!

Maria

Costa Luz Left

El Rocío, Huelva, Costa de la Luz, South western Spain, at facebook.com



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Legal tip 1115. European Court and misleading commercial practices
21 February 2014

European Court of Justice has recently ( December 2013) passed a decission containing a legal description of commercial "misleading practice" according to provision 6, paragraph 1 of the Directive on Unfair practices.

The European Court describes it as a practice that " on the one hand, contains false information or is induced to deceive the average consumer, and on the other hand, can cause the consumer to take a transactional decision that it would not have taken". 

Costa Luz Left

Polo in Tarifa, Cadiz, Costa de la Luz, South western Spain, at facebook.com

 



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Legal tip 1114. Banks campaigns for ethics
21 February 2014

Bankia  has created a confidential channel for complaints against malpractices available for employees and suppliers.

Bankia has outsourced the management of the service to a third party , PwC, to strengthen the independence of the process and ensure the confidentiality of complainants .

Customers of  Bankia may not use this confidential channel because they already have their own tool enabled in the customer service.

 
Javier Lopez Andreo , partner at PwC , explains that " having a foreign manager group is a barrier between the company and the complainant. This independent third party acts as a hinge and allows the complainant feels protected , reducing , in theory, the fear of reporting '.

The creation of the confidential channel  is in line with  the near reform the Criminal Code which is implementing the Government and is expected to come into force during 2014. The new standard will require all companies to have a  mechanism for reporting irregularities .

Costa Luz Left

BaeloClaudia, Bolonia, Tarifa, Cadiz, South western Spain, at facebook.com



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Legal tip 1113. Goods abroad to be declared in March
20 February 2014

A quick note to those of you, spanish residents with goods abroad, March 31st is the end of the general period for this declaration:

You can find full information in this ( english!) link of the  Spanish Treasure Office

No big deal!

Maria

Costa Luz Left

Sunset in Los Caños de Meca, Tarifa, Cadiz, Costa de la Luz, South western Spain, at facebook.com

 



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Legal tip 1112. Official list of Lawyers in Spain
19 February 2014

You can check here to find about a lawyer being registered at the corresponding Law Society:

Official list of lawyers in Spain

And if you want to read on our ethical code, this is a CostaLuz Lawyers made guide! Enjoy it!

Costa Luz Left

Tarifa and Africa. Tarifa, Cadiz, Costa de la Luz, South western Spain, at facebook.com

 

 

 


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Legal tip 1111. Official Guide on Non Resident Tax in Spain
18 February 2014

Easy, accesible, official:

Guide on Non Resident Tax in Spain

and if any doubt... please contact us

Costa Luz Left

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



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Legal tip 1110. Data protection Act in Spain
17 February 2014

Nice I found this to be sent to a client wanting to know on legals regarding Data Protection in Spain.

Do not get too " extreme", take it natural.

http://www.agpd.es/portalwebAGPD/english_resources/regulations/common/pdfs/reglamentolopd_en.pdf

Costa Luz Left

Cádiz, in the province of Cádiz, South western Spain, at facebook.com



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Legal tip 1109. Illegal insurances
14 February 2014

Anyone who received an Insurance Policy by any of these companies when buying off plan in Spain, please contact us. A member of the Insurance Office at the Economy Department is visiting us soon. If you or your lawyers want to provide info to her, that would help her in the investigation and if you decided/ and suffered an effective damage from this, you can be included as injured party in the sanctioning proceedings of the Government.
 
AGRUPACIÓN DE CAPITALES, S.A.
ALBATROSS INVEST, S.P.A.
AMERICAN BRITISH INSURANCE Ltd.
ASOCIACION COARBI CORTE ESPAÑOLA DE ARBITRAJE INSTITUCIONAL
ASOCIACIÓN CORTE ESPAÑOLA DE ARBITRAJE ECONÓMICO DE DERECHO Y EQUIDAD
ASOCIACIÓN GESTORA ESPAÑOLA DE ARBITRAJE
ASOCIACIÓN PROMOTORA ESPAÑOLA DE CORTES DE ARBITRAJE
BARKLEY DEVELOPMENT CORPORATION (sin vínculos ni relación con W.R. BERKLEY INSURANCE (EUROPE) LIMITED SUC. EN ESPAÑA, que es entidad aseguradora autorizada)
COBERTURA ASISTENCIAL DEPORTIVA S.L.
COMPAGNIE DES GARANTIES DE LUXEMBOURG, S.A. /COMPAGNIE
CORSA FINANCE LTD
DES GARANTIES, S.A-COMPAGNIA DI CAUZIONI, S.A-CAUZIONI, S.A.
DIMAX, DISTRIBUCIONES DEL TERCER MILENIO, S.L.
EUROCAUCIÓN LEVANTE SL
EUROCAUCIÓN SL
EUROPA CAUZIONI, S.p.A.
EUROPEAN COMPANY OF GUARANTEE LTD
GABINETE PREVENTIVO DE MEDICINA DEPORTIVA
GENERAL FIDI CONSORCIO GARANTIA FIDI
GRAVITELL INSURANCE@REINSURANCE BROKERS S.L
GRAVITELL LIMITED
HENRY MORTIMER PLC
HUGIES ROYAL FINANCE CORPORATION
IBERSHAMROCK S.L.
INKORE
ITALFINANZIARIA S.p.A.
LAUREN´S INSURANCE, Ltd.
LÓPEZ SEGUROS INTERNATIONAL INSURANCE COMPANY
MEMORIAL EXEQUIAS INTERNACIONAL S.L.
MERRION REINSURANCE COMPANY, Ltd.
MINOS SPA
MUTUELLE DE STRASBOURG
MUTUELLE INTERNAZIONALE D´ASSURANCES LA PARISIENNE
NORTHERNEEF INSURANCE COMPANY
SECURE CONSTRUCTION LIMITED
SEGUROS NOVA
SHAMROCK PROPERTIES OVERSEAS LIMITEDv
SUNNY LUCKY SEGUROS
SWISS FINANCIAL CORPORATION
TEMPLETON INSURANCE LTD
TOP CLASS INSURANCE
UNIÓN GENERAL DE VALORES, S.A.
 
Costa Luz Left
Júzcar, el pueblo Pitufo, Málaga, South eastern Spain, by Landahlauts, at flickr.com

 

 

 
 


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Legal tip 1108. Bank Guarantees and Malaga Bar Association
13 February 2014

Just back from a short trip to a Marbella. Meeting in the Bar Association for  a mediation session with a representative of a lawfirm who represented many british and irish clients during the real estate boom. He seems collaborative and committed to be providing this to us ( to you) before the end of March. We have been requesting this for years.

My thanks to Malaga Bar Association which has been very diligent doing its job.

I was quite harsh. We have been requesting this information since 2008!  for some clients. Both the mediator and the other colleague wanted me to be smiling and polite and not to show anger or frustration.....

Why is this? Why you cannot be angry and show it when this behaviour is damaging innocent people, the name of Spain, our economy, the name of our profession....?.  I just cannot understand.

Anyhow, he says he is providing the info before the end of March. If not, regretabbly, we will need to act against their professional insurance.

I will keep you posted

Maria

Costa Luz Left

Vista de Malaga, South eastern Spain, by Figuelo, at flickr.com

 



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R-ega-lo tip 1107. Rethinking the nature of work
12 February 2014

Rethinking Our Concept of Work

Argandoña Rámiz, Antonio

 

 

Original document: Trabajar en tiempos de crisis

Year: 2013

Language: Spanish

 

 
The widespread unemployment caused by the global economic crisis provokes a profound reconsideration of the very idea of work itself. 

This is the focus of IESE Prof. Antonio Argandoña's latest paper, in which he questions whether individualistic, utilitarian societies based on self-interested motivations and relationships are truly capable of confronting the root problems behind unemployment.

These problems -- from arrogance to greed to fraud -- have always been present, to some extent. But the recent global financial crisis has revealed major failings of social, economic and governance mechanisms, such that the current problems we are wrestling with cannot be chalked up to a series of unfortunate events. Indeed, they are the inevitable outcome of a deeper moral malaise that has infected our social and political institutions.

Work That Dehumanizes 
Although work is often presented as a way of satisfying personal needs, broadening one's knowledge and skills, and giving one a sense of dignity, work can also be dehumanizing. 

When we speak of work-related problems, unemployment usually springs to mind. A persistently high unemployment rate represents the collective failure of a society to provide opportunities for its citizens. 

For some, losing their job feels like losing their identity. The trauma is not only personal, but is also felt at family and social levels.

Job insecurity leaves people feeling uncertain about their futures and robs them of control over their lives. 

Some work can be degrading: Employees feel like commodities -- faceless and easy to replace. 

Other times, work becomes instrumental: People are treated as mere tools to be used by others, rather than as something to be valued.

Read the dossier Restoring the Human Side of Business

It is not the fact that a worker may produce material goods that is inhumane, but rather the way in which those goods are produced. If the work does not allow time for other activities necessary for human development and well-being, such as family, social and spiritual activities, it becomes an unhealthy interference. 

Finding Meaning in Work
Perhaps one reason why work has come to lack meaning is because we have turned it into something purely instrumental. 

Today, we measure people not by what or who they are, but by what they do, their economic success, their social ranking and what they can contribute to others. 

Our society effectively makes people depend on work for their very survival. With pensions, health care and retirement arrangements inextricably linked to how much a person makes during his or her working life, people's current and future standards of living depend wholly on their economic performance.

One reflection of how far we, as a society, have drifted concerns education: Today, education is seen as a means of developing productive capital, rather than as a source of human betterment. Certain subjects are prioritized over others, such as the humanities, which tend to be viewed dimly, regardless of their importance in building a civilized society.

Work That Is Grand
There are basically three reasons that drive people to work: to earn a living, to develop personally and to contribute to society.

However, there is another reason as well: Work is an everyday expression of human improvement, advancement and progress. Regardless of what we do, we must always try to do it to the best of our abilities, with a human touch and with dedication. 

Work may be conceived as a service to other people, beginning with our families, and then our colleagues and customers, our neighbors and, ultimately, all of humanity. 

The classic tale of three stonecutters captures it best: When asked what they were doing, the first said he was cutting stone, the second said he was supporting his family and the third said he was building a cathedral. 

In the same way, while the work may be identical, the meaning it carries can be quite different, which is why Argandoña urges us all to take a deeper reflection, at a time when the concept is in crisis.
 
Costa Luz Left
Láchar, Granada, South eastern Spain, by Fotos de Láchar, at flickr.com


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Legal tip 1106. Supreme Court, video surveillance and right to privacy
11 February 2014

It is not a black or white matter.

According to Supreme Court and Constitutional Court in Spain, principles of proportion and equilibrium need to be brought to discussion when deciding on situations where right to safety of a person can collide with right to privacy of a different one.

So.. there is no strict formula, every case is different.

Costa Luz Left

Esta casa es una ruina, Fuente de Piedra, Málaga, South eastern Spain, by Jose Manuel Repiso, at flickr.com



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Legal tip 1105. FREE Guide on Setting a company in Spain
08 February 2014



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Legal tip 1104. FREE Guide on Spanish Wills and Spanish IHT
08 February 2014

It is not that big deal,

Take a look and make your questions to our email address:

Costa Luz Left

Pampaneira, Region of the Alpujarra, Granada, South eastern Spain, by Landahlauts, at flickr.com

 

 


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Legal tip 1103. Supreme Court, valuators and Banks
07 February 2014

Chamber for Civil Matters of our Supreme Court  passed last summer a decision against a  Property Valuation Company, for damages resulting from an overvaluation of several properties. The Highest Civil Court found out that the value assigned to those properties were well above the market value.

The damaged party? A bank. Yes, incredible as it sounds. Bank as damaged and causer 50/50.

Supreme Court found liable the appraisal company (Tasvalor Group, SA), its insurance company and the technician who signed the appraisal.

Supreme Court argues  that the damage to the bank was not latent but real, as it lended against something of a much lower value. The decission precises the necessary cause-effect relationship between the conduct of the Valuation Company and such harmful result

Supreme Court acknowledges that the damage was also possible due to the lack of diligence of the Bank. So Bank and Valuation Company are liable 50-50

This is a good precedent for these actions to be brought about by individual buyers who bought and took mortgages for properties over valuated by Valuation companies and accepted by Banks.

We have got clients who took mortgages on illegal properties, who are now paying huge sums of money for nothing.

We also have clients that were "pressed" by Banks to keep paying the second mortgage that the developer took after consuming first loan and left unpaid before running away. Clients have no option but this or to lose their properties.

A couple of crazy expamles to be added to the catalogue of irregularities and illegalities practised by Banks during the " happy" financial years.

I trust Spanish Courts  will keep being as strong and clear as they are being when punishing banks. Good for healthy society.

Maria

Costa Luz Left

Bello Pueblo de Conil de la Frontera....En la Janda Litoral, Conil, Cádiz, South western Spain, by Manuel Acebedo, at flickr.com

 



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Legal tip 1102. Mortgage and related products. Obligatory?
06 February 2014

Three useful tips to take into account when negotiating a mortgage:

1. Only obligatory Insurance by Law ( Mortgage Law) is a  home insurance that provides basic coverage against flood, fire or earthquake. There are certain rules that can make this insurance cheaper: coverage needs to be made on the house but not on the soil or content . House has an specific value " for insuring purposes" on the valuation.

2. Any other insurance offered by the Bank is not obligatory. Banks offer better interest conditions for the mortgages when these are hired with them or associated entities. This is a legal practise.

3. It is always possible to waive the insurance taken "by mistake" when you can prove lack of information or deception by the Financial entity. 

Costa Luz Left

Zahara de los Atunes - Entrada (2005), Zahara, Cádiz, Costa de la Luz, South western Spain, by Juan Jimenez Martinez, at flickr.com
 



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Legal tip 1101. What to do if the Bank refuses my keys back?
03 February 2014

Well, that is not the end of the story and again, Banks are always below Rule of Law so, the battle will keep going. 

How is that?

It is important that you keep good control on steps made by the Bank after the amicable  keys-back offer refusal and once the enforecement-auction procedure starts.

You need to monitor if the enforecement procedure is being done according to Law, if auction is being convoked legally, if value given to the property for auction is correct, mainly if Banks are respecting the minimums stablished by Law as a barrier for them not to bargain with mortgage debtor rights.

Limits are calculated in relation to a big amount the Bank wrote in the mortgage deed as value for auctions, which comprises capital + delay interests+ legal costs and as such is, obviously, much higher ( like a 40% more) than the amount you actually received as a loan. If your current debt is between 50% and 70%  of that big value, and depending on if you are resiodent or not,  your possibilities for defence are  quite strong.

In the worst of the cases, after a good, thorough control of the proces, you will end up with a residual debt ( of 10-15% of loan) you could be paying in a long term period. A quite considerable solution!

There are always arguments before a standard denial by the Bank. Keep the fight up!

Costa Luz Left

Terra Alta, Tarragona, North eastern Spain, by SantiMB, at flickr.com



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