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Spanish Off-Plan Property - Bank Guarantees - LEY 57/68

This blog is for all those Off-Plan property purchasers in Spain who have not received Bank Guarantees for their deposit funds as required by Spanish Law, in particular LEY 57/68 Article 1.1 and 1.2 and are now at risk of losing their money. In addition many purchasers who did receive Bank Guarantees are now finding that the Spanish Banks are refusing to honour them without legal action being taken by the purchaser.

ARTICLE IN DAILY MAIL - 11 JULY 2013
11 July 2013 @ 00:03

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2359550/Hope-thousands-Britons-lost-fortunes-Spanish-property-ventures-ex-pats-win-legal-battle-bank-return-1-3million.html

ARTICLE IN DAILY MAIL – 11 JULY 2013


Hope for thousands of Britons who lost fortunes in Spanish property ventures after ex-pats win legal battle with bank to return £1.3million

  • Keith Rule spent hours trawling the Internet for help after a bank refused to return his £45,983 deposit on a villa which was never built
  • He took on bank bosses after discovering a 45-year-old property law
  • Not only has he got his money but he has helped win back nearly £1.3million for 46 other buyers
  • The 46-year-old impressed lawyers so much he has been asked to work with them on a part-time basis

By Gerard Couzens

PUBLISHED:| UPDATED:

 

A laundry owner who feared losing life savings in a Spanish property scandal is celebrating after helping lawyers win a landmark legal case which has given hope to thousands of wronged Brits.

Father-of-two Keith Rule, 46, spent hours trawling the Internet with the help of Google translator after a bank refused to return his £45,983 deposit on an off-plan villa never built because of the economic crisis.

He took on bank bosses after discovering a 45-year-old property law making them jointly responsible with promoters for returning guaranteed deposits on failed developments.

Now the businessman has not only got his money back - but helped win back nearly £1.3 million for 46 mostly British buyers whose dreams of villas on the same development in south east Spain were scuppered.

Mr Rule, from Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, impressed the Costa lawyers he instructed to take their case on so much, they asked him to work for them on a part-time basis.

He now combines the day-to-day running of his firm on an industrial estate in his home town with his new job preparing case files for other Brits engulfed in the drama that swept him up when Spanish savings bank CAM washed its hands of buyers after an initial promise of a bank guarantee seven years ago.

Last night Mr Rule, described as a 'dog with a bone' by one of the lawyers who agreed to fight his case through the 1968 law he found on the Internet, urged others in the same situation not to give up.

 

The 47 buyers involved in the landmark trial at a court in Albacete province near Murcia, south east Spain, have just received all the money back they put down.

Only some of the 617 three and four-bed homes with pools on the luxury Finca Parcs development in Hellin on the Albacete-Murcia border were ever partially finished.

The group are now also applying to the court for case costs and interest on their deposits to be paid.

 

Only some of the 617 three and four-bed homes with pools on the luxury Finca Parcs development in Hellin on the Albacete-Murcia border were ever partially finished

Mr Rule, who handed over deposits on two villas in November 2006, said: 'At the start of this fight people called me crazy but they don’t now and I’m delighted to have given hope to other Brits.

'There was no concept five years ago in Spain banks could be liable in these sorts of situations.

'We’ve created case law here. 

'I haven’t got a magic wand I can wave for everything but my message to people in the situation I was in is "Don’t give up."

'I’m living proof you can take on powerful institutions and beat them when they’re wrong and you’re right.'

A Spanish judge ruled CAM - now taken over by Sabadell - was guilty of malpractice for failing to ensure deposits were spent only on building the villas and never collecting an equivalent cash safeguard from the promoters.

The holiday home buyers won an initial trial against the bank and Spanish promoters Cleyton Ges in May 2012 - and an appeal in March this year.

 

 

A Spanish judge ruled CAM - now taken over by Sabadell - was guilty of malpractice

A second lawsuit on behalf of 13 more Finca Parcs buyers has already been filed - and Mr Rule is working on a third lawsuit with Algeciras, Cadiz-based lawyer Maria de Castro and her brother Jaime who took the first case to court.

Theirs and other Spanish legal firms around Spain are also winning cases based on law 57/1968 - the law Keith uncovered on Google which has spared Brits the nightmare scenario of exhausting court battles against promoters with no money.

He said last night: 'I bet the CAM executives I demanded my money back from five years ago wished they had given me a cheque that day.

'The court case set a legal precedent and is being used by other law firms around Spain.'

Jamie de Castro, of  De Castro lawyers, added: 'It’s amazing that a non-Spaniard who didn’t even speak Spanish and was using Google translator helped get us this far.

'I have no problem in admitting I wasn’t confident at the start this would work and feared Keith might be wasting time and money.

'But he insisted and insisted and began to make us believe it could.

'My sister described him once as a dog with a bone which I hope he takes now as a compliment.'

Pensioner Reg Matthews, a friend of Mr Rule's who has had his £22,980 deposit returned, added: 'It’s a great relief to have my money back although I was keen on having a place in the sun like thousands of other Brits.

'Without Keith’s help I and many others would have lost everything.'

 



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22 Comments


Ann said:
11 July 2013 @ 18:23

So thrilled with this news - surely a ray of hope for many. A million, trillion thanks and congratulations to all those involved.


Anita said:
13 July 2013 @ 05:10

Well done. We have been waiting 7 years for our Deeds, what do the Spanish Lawyers do? Good Luck in the future.


TonyP said:
13 July 2013 @ 09:08

Well done Keith . I fully understand what he has gone through as I also put a deposit on a house but it never got built. I was very lucky as the bank guarantee was honoured and with the help of a very good solicitor got my money back plus interest. Like Keith my advice is don't give in to these big institutions.


TonyP said:
13 July 2013 @ 09:13

Well done Keith . I fully understand what he has gone through as I also put a deposit on a house but it never got built. I was very lucky as the bank guarantee was honoured and with the help of a very good solicitor got my money back plus interest. Like Keith my advice is don't give in to these big institutions.


John said:
13 July 2013 @ 09:44

"If at first you don't succeed..............." " All it takes for evil to persist is for good men to do nothing". Keith must be one hell of a good man - congrats. As for bankers - you would blush perennially with my special vernacular for them!!
CAVEAT EMPTOR to the power of 10!


ken hawkins said:
13 July 2013 @ 10:26

Hello Keith can you help me get back our euros66,000 .We bought through Polaris World


mike smith said:
13 July 2013 @ 10:27

Well done Keith!! Can the law 57/1968 be used to make claims against builders/banks who failed to fully complete urbanisations/buildings.


Bryan H said:
13 July 2013 @ 12:03

It is hard to appreciate the sheer persistence and power of mind involved in Keith's achievements! Many congratulations & great news you continue to be involved with Maria and Jamie. Thanks for all your help, but I still haven't received my "You're my Hero " T shirt and poster. Best Wishes


BigBrenda said:
13 July 2013 @ 12:18

Absolutely blumin' fanastic - well done just isn't enough. It really does show that persistence pays off.

Your efforts to get you own money back, and that of the 46 others, will now give some hope to people in the same position


paintpot said:
13 July 2013 @ 12:21

Well done. I can see this as the start of justice being seen to be
done in Spain for property buyers who have been treated with
utter contempt by the Spanish Property Companies,Banks and
Officials.


stewart knowles said:
13 July 2013 @ 12:26

Brilliant Keith, I also was involved with a villa in Almeria with the promotor and builder construcciones y reformas parra mellado sl of Huercal-Overa owner Mr Franciso Parra Parra (Paco).

We put a deposit down of 112,000.00 Euro with a promised completion date of 18 Months, 3 years later nothing had started, another 2 years and they did start sending photos of various stages of build, once up to roof stage they demanded another 88,000 .00 euro which we sent, as soon as the money was received they stopped and never started, it took another 2 years for me to actually arrange for the plot to be legally put in our name , only after i paid the banks the outstanding mortgage of 18.000.00 euro also architect fees of 14,000.00 euro and various other legal fees, and all we have is a half built villa with a roof on, I now after complete the villa myself. it would be of interest to me if at least i could scrape back my deposit from the bank. it has been a 7 year nightmare with little help from spanish solicitors,


stewart knowles said:
13 July 2013 @ 12:30

Brilliant Keith, I also was involved with a villa in Almeria with the promotor and builder construcciones y reformas parra mellado sl of Huercal-Overa owner Mr Franciso Parra Parra (Paco).

anyone can contact me on stewartknowles@aol.com


Diane said:
13 July 2013 @ 17:32

Well done Keith, great news. The same thing happened to us and our court case was meant to go ahead a few months back but the judge was off sick so the courts have give us a new date for march 2014 ggggrrr


Diana Smith said:
14 July 2013 @ 10:18

If only we could tackle the banks involved in fraud and corruption here in England the same. Radio 4 mention Land Fraud in March / April 2009 and no one has received redress yet.
Our Government opted for an open register at Land Registry in 1990, which brought about vast amounts of still continuing frauds and no hope yet in sight for victims


Ros said:
15 July 2013 @ 09:25

Well done my friend for your dogged persistence.

Can anyone help out there help or point me in the right direction? We put a substantial deposit down for a purchase of an El Rosario golf apartment at Villanueva del Rosario which was to be built by Grupo Mirador. We dealt with Palmera Properties and can neither get any response or indeed any information as to where to go from here.As many others I suspect we are not youngsters and this loss is hurting.Very many thanks.


Judith Basham said:
15 July 2013 @ 12:44

Bravo! It is not disgusting that the banks "never" knew about this regulation? Or the solicitors on behalf of the people wronged never knew it either? In the practice of law, one must decide what field to specialize in - so why the big problem? The law itself is easily numbered in the system. I can remember the Spanish Ambassador to England on Watchdog with Ann tearing him apart. Generally speaking, aren't ambassadors educated quite highly? Anyway, well done to Keith.


Warren Pettafor said:
16 July 2013 @ 16:25

I could really do with this mans help on a property I tried to buy in Granada through Peninsula. Can anyone out there help me recover 68 thousand euro's. warrenpettafor4x4@hotmail.com


Bridget Baxter said:
24 July 2013 @ 20:23

You have given us some hope. Thanks and well done Keith. Can you help us against Polaris World
bridget.baxter@yahoo.co.uk


Lorna adams said:
25 July 2013 @ 20:07

Hi Keith, Congratulations on winning your case! We put deposits on 2 properties worth £78,000 one with Palmera the other one Pennisula. We have tried every thing and even where insulted by a lady in Pennisula called Mae. We would be grateful for advice.

David & Lorna Adams
Email lornaadams50@yahoo.co.uk
Telephone : 02891889135

Kind regards Lorna


sheavesy said:
22 September 2013 @ 09:26

We are having an on going battle with Parra Mellado over monies they owe us going back 5+ years. We had put down a deposit on a plot but due to various circumstances. They agreed to return our deposit minus a hefty fee and signed a contract to that effect. The agreement was to return our money in 12 months time or earlier if the plot was resold. It was sold again but no money appeared. This went on and on so we took them to court, won our case but they still didn't return the money. So we went back to court, obtained an embargo on a piece of land they owned preventing any building to go ahead. This land is now supposed to go to public auction and the proceeds to come to us. We are now being asked for a further 1200 euros for the land to be valued an the auction to be publicised. We have thrown so much money into this we just can't come up with any more. Can this law help us and who do we contact?


gillypom said:
15 February 2014 @ 15:52

Hi Keith, we also have issue with a villa in Almeria with the builder construcciones y reformas parra mellado sl of Huercal-Overa owner Mr Franciso Parra Parra (Paco).

We put a deposit down in 2006 with a promised completion date of 24 Months, however, the builders license was not received until 2008, putting the completion date to 2010. Over 3 years later nothing has started. When we visited the site in 2010 we were told footings were going in and there was a bank guarantee in place which they would send us a copy of. However, no building work has been done and we do not have a bank guarantee. A solicitor acting on our behalf was due to take out a charge on the company's assets but after several interim payments, we were asked for a further deposit of 7500 euros for legal fees which we have yet to pay as we don't want to be throwing good money after bad if we don't get a return. Would appreciate your advice on where to go from here.


sheavesy said:
16 February 2014 @ 09:33

This is a note to Gillypom. Parra Mellado have gone bust. An Administrator has been appointed but we have written our money off as it looks as if they had loads of debts. We went out to Spain at the end of last year to see if there was anything we could do and there isn't. Our solicitor has lodged a claim with the Administrator and we just have to sit back and wait but it could take years. Sorry to be the bearer of bad news.


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