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Spanish Property Developers in Crisis

Many British people have bought properties from Spanish developers who are now suffering as a result of the financial crisis. This blog will provide updates on the current situation and useful information about the problems British buyers are facing in respect to their Spanish properties.

Angry Spanish Property Buyers Win Day In Court Over ‘Developer’s Broken Promises’
29 June 2011 @ 16:01

Nine Britons who claim their dreams of owning homes on a five-star development in south-eastern Spain are now in tatters because of a property firm’s broken promises have welcomed news that they will get their day in court.

Members of the group used their life savings to put down deposits of up to €200,000 on properties at the Corvera Golf and Country Club close to Murcia in 2005 and 2006, with developers promising that their homes would be part of a top-quality project which included a five-star hotel and a host of other state-of-the-art leisure facilities.

However, the Britons have endured a frustrating and difficult five years since the majority of the proposed facilities have never been built, with the firm behind the development, Corvera Golf and Country Club SL, ignoring their pleas for answers over the issue.

Now, the group and legal experts at Irwin Mitchell Abogados – the Spanish arm of UK law firm Irwin Mitchell which last year commenced legal action against the company on their behalf – have welcomed the outcome of a preliminary hearing in Murcia, where it was confirmed the developers will have to answer the allegations in a trial in July next year.

The disgruntled homebuyers have also been buoyed by the news that Corvera lost an appeal against a ruling in another case related to the development, in which it was proven that the company did not have planning permission for the third phase of the site.

Alex Radford, the solicitor at the Malaga office of Irwin Mitchell Abogados who is helping the group in their battle for justice, said the formal setting of a date for trial and the result of the recent appeal are both a major boost in their fight.

He explained: “The past couple of years have been fraught with frustration, worry and anger for all of those who put their hard-earned savings into this development with the promise that they would be part of something really special. Shockingly, that promise has never been fulfilled.

“These people deserve answers as to why the facilities they were told would be built have not been and the opportunity to claim their money back from the company.

“We maintain the belief that the developers are in breach of contract and are delighted that those who have been badly let down in this affair will get the chance to have their voices heard in a court of law next year. Corvera should rest assured that come July all of our clients will be present in court to have their say.

“The news of the recent successful appeal is also very important, as it suggests that if the firm does not have planning permission for a third phase – let alone the fourth and fifth phases proposed by the company – there are no plans for anymore construction work. In theory, this means the facilities that were promised to so many people should be complete now.”

John Thorpe, from Lincoln, is one of the property buyers whose dreams of owning a top-class holiday home in Spain have been shattered by the actions of Corvera Golf and Country Club SL.

Discussing the news of the court date and the reaction of the group, he said: “We are all incredibly relieved to know that we will have a chance to stand up and tell authorities in Spain of the terrible ordeal we’ve been through in trying to get answers over the development.

“Like the other families in the group, we simply wanted to invest our savings into a development which offered us a chance of a better future. Sadly, we all feel completely cheated by what’s happened and just want one of two things to happen – the promised facilities to be built or our money back so we can get out of this nightmare.

“It makes me sick to the stomach to think about what’s happened and we will continue to fight to get the answers we want over this.”

The homebuyers who are represented by Irwin Mitchell are thought to be among 100 who put deposits down on homes valued at between €190,000 and €550,000 after falling in love with the plans for Corvera Golf and Country Club.

However, they had serious concerns after being chased for final payment on the properties, despite the majority of the leisure facilities not being built and some suggestions that build licences were also not in place for some of them.

The case was reviewed by Spanish authorities in a preliminary hearing held in Murcia on June 13th. The purpose of it was to set a trial date, as well as to present evidence on the case and determine the witnesses who can and should be called at the trial.

In terms of evidence, Irwin Mitchell Abogados presented a precedent case from February this year, where Corvera lost its appeal over a rulling which allowed a person who purchased a home on phase three of the development to recover their deposit.

Alex Radford explains: “The case was successful as it was confirmed there was no permission for the construction of phase three.

“This is notable as Corvera had stated to us and our clients that as building work continues, more facilities would be added on-site. However, the lack of planning permission means it is unlikely that any other construction work will be completed, so the promised facilities will still not be built.”

All of the people that Irwin Mitchell are representing in relation to this case have been called to act as witnesses in the trial, which is set to begin at the First Instance Court Number 2 in Murcia on Tuesday 17th July 2012.

If you have been affected by a smiliar case, contact Alex Radford at or call +34 952 209 872.

Like 0


Anne said:
29 June 2011 @ 16:10

Are there Bank Guarantee issues at stake here also? Were BG's provided from the outset with details of special accounts and the guarantor identified within the original purchase contracts?

Buyer said:
29 June 2011 @ 21:34

Was it just the FINAL planning permission that was not granted. If so it was probably not even applied for as the lack of people completing on the first two phases (built at the same time) meant that Corvera had a lack of cashflow to commit themselves to an 18 month deadline on Phase 3.

Frank said:
30 June 2011 @ 12:17

If Calidona really did have cashflow problems that quickly into the build, it shows that they had a charge Peter to pay Paul business plan. Some business plan.

Alfonso Valero said:
01 July 2011 @ 17:23

Well done. However, the trial date is not a success, it's just the normal procedure: first the preliminary hearing and then the trial date. Also, not all developments of Covera are illegal, only those without a licence, so that victory in appeal is not applicable to every single buyer of Covera.

another buyer said:
04 July 2011 @ 18:13

Is Irwin Mitchell making the same mistakes as Corvera? According to @Buyer and @Alfonso Valero, seems to me they are making and advertising campaign with some promises they might not be able to deliver.

24 June 2012 @ 17:24


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