Am I liable for my husbands debt in spain?

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31 Oct 2008 00:00 by weyiman Star rating. 3 posts Send private message

I have lived in spain for three years, and last year my husband agreed to do some work for a UK guy, wall pool etc for 60,000 euros.  No contracts, just a hand shake.  The guy sent 25,000 euro over into our joint bank account.  My husband did the first 5000 euros worth of work and then got into financial difficulties.  He told the guy he had ran out of money, but WOULD bring the work in on budge.  The man said ok, but then changed the spec of the work... Instead of a wall around 10,000mt plot of 1.2mtrs high, it changed to 2.1mts high, then the pool , which had already been dug out and steels put in was no longer required.  Instead he wanted a roof terrace tiled, wall built to make it safe, FIVE extensions to his house, then he had my husband start work on an neighbours wall too.... for which this guy was getting paid for.

Some ten months later they had a falling out because my husband sign up for being self employed with a view to doing some work where he would get paid.

The guy has now gone to a solicitor and stated my husband took the money and ran off... We live a couple of hundred meters away,  we hardly ran far.  He wants the whole 25,000 euros back.  We have b4 and after photos of the work, but there isnt a contract so how can we prove that he did do it.  We do have a friend who will stand up and court and swear to who did the work.

As the receipt for the money bears my name, being the first account holders name on the account, they are coming after me.  They have threatened to have me arrested in front of my 9 year old son, and put in prison.  Further more if I do not sign for a charge to be put on my house, then they will have my assests frozen (the house is in my name) and I will not be able to sell my house, (which I am currently trying to do and DO have a buyer).  Also the guardia will watch me 24/7 so I do not skip the country.

I have nothing to do with my husbands business... but they say as I am married I must bear the brunt... Its this right....

If so, what would happen if I were no longer married, could they still come after me... After all its has nothing to do with me really.

I need help ASAP, as this is all going to happen on Monday.....  I have had no correspondence from there solicitor in Spanish, just a letter in English giving me 10 days to pay, but that was last month


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10 Nov 2008 14:03 by Karensun Star rating in Orihuela Costa. 1474 posts Send private message

Karensun´s avatar


I know this is a bit late but I've only just read your post AND I don't have an answer but I am concerned for you because I had a similar experience re. my ex husband's debts while I was still in UK. Although things ( council tax etc ) were in HIS name, 'they' still made my life hell and insisted I was responsible, even tho I gave them his new address............'they' said they would deal with me because I was there!!

In the end I had to consult a solicitor so it cost me a fortune anyway. But, if you cannot do that ( I too had kids ) I don't know what to suggest. Perhaps you could PM Maria, the EOS legal person and she may be able to help if it's not already too late.

Let us know what happens, if you can. Good Luck.

  ' Do unto others as you would be done by'
         Now a non-smoker !  

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10 Nov 2008 16:35 by weyiman Star rating. 3 posts Send private message

Thanks Karensun, your the only person who replied,  I am sorry to hear about your problems... Men seem to be at the bottom of most of womens problems dont they?

This guy got his girlfriend to come to see me and stated that if I refused to sign then I would be taken to Lanzarote Prison for obtaining money under false pretenses.  The fact that he had already smashed my car up was not good enough.  He says he knows the commission of police in Antigua, so it would be easy to get me arrested and sent to prison!!!!

In the end I went to see a solicitor, even though I could not afford one.  He told me that what they were saying was totally untrue, and I should report it to the police (its called a denuncia here).  He said it had nothing to do with me, and their solicitor could be struct off if he was indeed threatening to do this to me.  He's going to have a word with him and if he did give this advice, my solicitor is going to report him to the bar.  He's in the opinion that they are trying to scare me into signing  as they know I own the house and my husband has no money at all.

The good news is that my solicitor was so taken aback by the injustice of it all, hes not charging me for these services, unless it goes to court that is.

As for the money, my solicitor is obtaining the services of an independant architect to give a value of the work my husband completed... We already know the value will exceed 80,000 euros if not 100,000 euros, so this guy got a fantastic deal for 25K then...

If it goes to court we are in an excellent position to win, although it will cost us over 1000 euros to do so.  Seemingly in spanish law, if my husband runs up debts, he can be liable upto his share in the home, which in spanish law is 50%, BUT because we had a prenuptial agreement that he renounced any legal rights to the property (as I had sold my home in the UK to buy it and he did not finance it), then he has no legal rights over the house at all, and therefore no debt can be put on it.

This guy still sends text messages saying I'm being silly and will end up in prison and wants to come to an amicable agreement now, but these are now being sent to my husband, as he knows I'll just report at once to my solicitor and my husband just ignores it.

Its not over yet, it could still get very nasty as this man is very violent.  I just want to sell my home now and move away.. Which is a shame as I live in a lovely village and the spanish are wonderful, but its a tiny village and  is too near to this man... I am worried what he will do, I have installed recorded CCTV and I take and collect my son to school.  Theres no telling what this man will do, he has been guilty of really bad things in this village, so thats why I need to get away ASAP.  No matter how many times he is denounced, he never seems to get arrested, perhaps the fact he's friends of the Commission of Police now explains it.


thanks again, I will let you know how it turns out









This message was last edited by weyiman on 11/10/2008.

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10 Nov 2008 17:06 by mariadecastro Star rating in Algeciras (Cadiz). 9344 posts Send private message

Legal Questions? Speak to Maria Direct

Are you liable in the Uk? Same way in Spain. The fact of living or being a spanish resident does not change the submission of your marriage financial issues to the Law of your nationality.


Maria L. de Castro, JD, MA



El blog de Maria

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10 Nov 2008 17:07 by Karensun Star rating in Orihuela Costa. 1474 posts Send private message

Karensun´s avatar

Just to let you know, weyiman, that I got rid ( not literally ) of the no-good husband some 15 years ago and have been married to my now husband for 6 years, happily.

I'm so sorry you feel you will have to move, will you take your husband with you?

It seems you have had a rough deal and I hope things get better for you soon.

  ' Do unto others as you would be done by'
         Now a non-smoker !  

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10 Nov 2008 18:00 by weyiman Star rating. 3 posts Send private message

Hi maria


I had a pre nup agreement with my first husband in the UK and Yes it did mean he could not touch my house.

I was told that a pre-nup is legal in the USA, the UK annd most of Europe including Spain as long as i got it officially translated into Spanish.. Is this not the case.. Has my solicitor been mis informed?



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11 Nov 2008 06:42 by mariadecastro Star rating in Algeciras (Cadiz). 9344 posts Send private message

Legal Questions? Speak to Maria Direct

Your solicitor is fully right.


Maria L. de Castro, JD, MA



El blog de Maria

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