Lawyer must pay back fees.

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This topic contains 29 replies, has 9 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Anonymous Anonymous 7 years, 6 months ago.

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  • #54991
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    Could be Claire’s case or a similar one.

    http://www.diariosur.es/20090515/marbella/bufete-debera-devolver-cobrado-20090515.html

    Lawyer who allowed an English couple to pay 30% deposit on a property in Elviria even though it was already illegal has to return fees.

    Two comments below article saying the Lawyers office should be named.

  • #92138
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    @katy wrote:

    Could be Claire’s case or a similar one.

    http://www.diariosur.es/20090515/marbella/bufete-debera-devolver-cobrado-20090515.html

    Lawyer who allowed an English couple to pay 30% deposit on a property in Elviria even though it was already illegal has to return fees.

    Two comments below article saying the Lawyers office should be named.

    They should be named and then avoided like plague.

  • #92140
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    katy

    or my case!

    the UK lawyer (UK conveyancing) and the UK agents (OVP) just lied to me and sent my deposit to their developer (Aifos) before a building license had even been issued, and never was!. OVP held on to £6000 of ours as their commision, on a sale that never happened!!!

    both the founders have wound their companies up and have started new ventures using money from their many cheated victims no doubt. Staffordshire fraud are on to OVP, and the founder of UK conveyancing is under investigation, so some sort of justice should happen?

  • #92142
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    You’ve beaten me to it Katy! 😀 Yes it is our case. As the firm has appealed they cannot be named. 😈 We acknowledged they did some work and that 15 months after the contract was signed and they told us that the building was not going to happen, they got a BG for us, even though they told us we would have it soon after we paid 30% deposit. This BG was post dated for another 15 months after this time!
    We wanted 70% of the 7,500 euros that the law firm asked for upfront for legal fees. The Judge awarded us 60% + interest. That means we have to pay our own costs. 😈 Just shows how very unscrupulous that this Marbella law firm is that despite the Judge saying they were negligent in their duties to us ..they have appealed the ruling!!!

  • #92147
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Claire: What else did you expect. I knew this will happen & I am sure that you did as well.

    All, law firms globally would have used the appeal to protect their standing, what ever the standing means in the eyes of their clients, governing body etc.

  • #92150
    Profile photo of Inez
    Inez
    Participant

    Claire, its a start, a damn good one and well done to you for hanging in in there.

    That goes to you Goodstitch and all the others battling away.

  • #92152
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Exactly what we expected Shakeel, from the law firm. I drafted a post c&p’d from their website. I’m not sure if I should post it though. I edited any reference from naming them, but it makes farcical reading. What do you think? Post it here or not?

  • #92153
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Thanks Inez, we will hang in there. Couldn’t come this far without seeing it through now, and feel I sort of owe it to others on this and the other main forum for boring everyone stiff about my problems for so long!! Should hear the result of our court case in the next few weeks?

  • #92154
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    Anonymous
    Participant
  • #92155
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Claire, I am not for holding back. However in order to not to prejudice your case or affect Mark. I do not see anything wrong in posting it while deleting reference, name/address of the firm & the lawyer involved

  • #92156
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Well done Inspector Goodstich!! 😆
    Just goes to show how long it takes to get these cases to court.

  • #92159
    Profile photo of Fuengi (Andrew)
    Fuengi (Andrew)
    Participant

    @Claire wrote:

    Exactly what we expected Shakeel, from the law firm. I drafted a post c&p’d from their website. I’m not sure if I should post it though. I edited any reference from naming them, but it makes farcical reading. What do you think? Post it here or not?

    Do not post it.

    Even if you remove a name or 2. More than likely if you did post it here I could just copy and paste it into google, and the closest approximation would show in in google results. i.e the lawyers.

    So its as good as naming them, in a way. play it safe and wait. or pm it to people.

  • #92160
    Profile photo of Anonymous
    Anonymous
    Participant

    Claire

    indeed it does. If someone started action today, how many companies at fault will still be there to get justice from in 3, 5, 7 years???. The time taken to get justice and the stupid appeal system could and should be something that be could be acted on now, but like everthing else it would probably take forever just to agree to take action!!

  • #92161
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    Anonymous
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    are they still known as Direct lawyers etc?, or have they changed their trading name?? name the partners !!

    A disgrace and and an unfortunate blemish on the majority of law firms in marbella that do a good job for clients !!!

  • #92162
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    @UBEDA wrote:

    are they still known as Direct lawyers etc?, or have they changed their trading name?? name the partners !!

    A disgrace and and an unfortunate blemish on the majority of law firms in marbella that do a good job for clients !!!

    With many crook(e) in their business… 😀

  • #92163
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    UBEDA, Can you please pm the list of so called good lawyers.

  • #92164
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    I have just read through the posts of the link posted by Goodstich. Goodness, even though it has been a long time since I posted them, it seems like only yesterday…the wounds are still sore.
    Katerina, who posted as “kemmanou” on that thread, very kindly read the 15 page Court transcript for us when we got it last week (all in Spanish, of course, but which she said she enjoyed reading!) and gave us the gist of what the Judge had said. We have made some good friends here (on SPI) out of all this mess.

  • #92174
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Hi Shakeel, in which areas? also, depends what you need a lawyer for; to spring you from jail for drink driving, litigation, town planning matters etc ??

    I’m in the Marbella area and know about fifty practices that i could recommend highly; there are probably a 1,000 offices in the area – of which many if not most should be competent and reliable: i don’t buy this idea that all the lawyers here are crap…. I don’t know how Claire got in with her lawyers – I’d never heard of them – probably arrived during the frenzied boom to join the gravy train !!

  • #92175
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    Anonymous
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    of which many if not most should be competent and reliable:

    SHOULD be…but are not as has been proven a thousand times over. Too many Spanish lawyers do not have the professionalism or integrity that UK lawyers have. They are not kicked out of their profession or called to account by the Collegio for negligent work.

    The company we used was not a tinpot ,cheapy back street firm. We would probably have done better if they were. Indeed they had a flashy office overlooking the Marina. Gravy train or not, should they not implement the law to the letter and do their job properly…in the interest of their client? Do they not take an oath to uphold the law ? There are no excuses for corrupt lawyers. There are many in Marbella and beyond.

  • #92176
    Profile photo of katy
    katy
    Spectator

    We had a Lawyer here in Marbella from the early 90’s. He was great, if he was not in the office when I called he would call back asap. We socialised with him too, still have a painting he gave us. Around 2000 there was a change, not so efficient, not as available, we had to query a few costs, wouldn’t have said he was corrupt but he wasn’t on the ball anymore.. We (regretfully) parted company with him in 2001. If I were to need a Lawyer now I wouldn’t know which to choose in Marbella.

    The number of Lawyers increased parallel with the number of estate agents during the boom years, many joined bufetes straight from law school and were left to work without supervision. It really was the gold rush.

  • #92183
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    UBEDA

    what planet are you on? Have you not noticed the amount of posts about bad Spanish lawyers? We have a good one now, but it’s a bit like finding a needle in a haystack. As Claire said

    ”Too many Spanish lawyers do not have the professionalism or integrity that UK lawyers have.”

    That is a problem for UK buyers, they assume that they can take for granted the fact a lawyer will be working in their interest, as they would expect in the UK. Big mistake. Like some agents and developers, lawyers get can away with blue murder in Spain, because there is simply little to stop them!

  • #92185
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Like some agents and developers, lawyers get can away with blue murder in Spain, because there is simply little to stop them!

    Well said Goodstich.

  • #92187
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    We would probably have done better if they were. Indeed they had a flashy office overlooking the Marin

    ah yes, I do know who you are talking about – offices that would make TRUMP headquarters in Manhattan look shabby. There was another Englishman working there as well – Stephen G


    What I remember is that there were lots of rumours about them ……………

    Goodstitch; I guess you’re right; the “honesty and integrity” rate is much higher in your country; but don’t forget this is a Latin country and like all the others has a much higher rate of corruption and dishonesty than Anglo saxon countries; nothing new really and property buyers have been suffering since they arrived wielding cheque books in the sixties !!

    Claire, well done for not giving up !!!

  • #92189
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    Anonymous
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    UBEDA

    yes indeed, many of us learned that lesson the hard way. Having said that, we got involved with UK agents and UK lawyers who were as corrupt as any in Spain, as did many others. They relied on the fact that most people from the UK did trust them, and thought they could rely on them to help with their Spanish purchase. What a mistake that was!! We ended up with a corrupt UK agent and lawyer, and a corrupt Spanish lawyer and developer. We now at last have a good Spanish lawyer…….and the story goes on!

  • #92211
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    Anonymous
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    Hi,
    I think it is very important to post the outcome when you have a really bad experience as in the case of the poster who has won her claim in the Courts – it probably offers some comfort to others who may be in a similar situation but are concerned that they may not “win” or even have the confidence to take such action.

    But also I think its important to recognise that the forums by their very nature tend to be used predominantly for problems / issues / bad news etc. In itself this is not a problem – because again sharing experiences can help others not to fall into similar traps. BUT – it would be wrong to suggest or to believe that there is a much higher rate of bad practice in the Legal profession here in Spain than anywhere else in the EU, and to then tar the majority of Law firms with the same brush.

    Of course there will be those who do not operate with the level of ethics / morals as they should, and that happens across the World. But there are many who do, and the Court result in this case does show that when they do the authorities will deal with them accordingly.

    One poster said they wouldnt know where to find a good Lawyer in Marbella if they needed one – and thats a sad indictment to read. There are many us believe me who either independently, or as part of a large Spanish Law firm are professional, competent, ethical and definitely work within the boundaries and guidelines laid down by the relevant Law Associations here in Spain.

  • #92219
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    Anonymous
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    Manzanares, your post is of course agreeable in that we all know that there ARE good lawyers out there. How do you know a good one from a bad one? We thought we were dealing with an HONEST company..it couldn’t be further from the truth. We were/are not the only ones to be badly affected by this company. Indeed this particular lawyer was apparently”suspended” by the Collegio at one time, but he did what he does best…stuck two fingers up and carried on as normal.
    It would give us all a great deal more confidence if the Collegio de Abogados used their teeth and bought all of these corrupt lawyers to book and struck them off. That way, the decent and honourable Law firms would remain and would not get tarred with the same brush by default. Why don’t all you “good” guys talk to the Collegios? You are best placed to make a difference.
    We wrote to the Collegio (Malaga) about our complaint, in Spanish as requested, and they called this lawyer into a meeting with our (excellent) Spanish Lawyer present. He failed to attend…the Collegio did NOTHING! Next an arbitration meeting was sent to him to be heard by a Judge but not in Court, with our Lawyer present….AGAIN he failed to attend! We then took the action of suing him through the Court. He was found guilty of witholding our money and failing in his duties. Now, he has appealed. How very honourable!!
    Until some action is taken against these bad law firms, and with expedience, then I fear confidence in Spanish justice will not be attained. I am staggered that it is possible to appeal such a case as ours.

    I have been very careful not to “name & shame” this company myself in this thread. But I agree, they should be.

  • #92235
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    Anonymous
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    manzanares

    I think we all know there are many good lawyers in Spain, but we also know we can’t take for granted that a lawyer will be good, as is more often the case in the UK. Again, with the court system, in the UK, most feel confident that with the help of a good lawyer, if you have a very strong case in your favour then the question of appeal is not an issue as a rule. Wrong is wrong and will be dealt with accordingly in the majority of cases similar to those we face in Spain.

    That is why so many of us doubt the integrity of the Spanish system. We expect honesty and justice from those in positions we have to trust will act in that way. Sadly in many peoples experience that is not the case in Spain far to often.

  • #92263
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    Anonymous
    Participant

    Thankyou for taking time to comment on my post, it is appreciated.

    The main reason for my post was because a number of forum users had suggested it was extremely difficult or impossible to find a reputable or good Lawyer here in Spain, and that you could not trust them in the same way you would in the UK.

    I have no doubt that the frustration, the financial and emotional costs that are experienced by individuals who are either misled, misrepresented, misinformed by a Lawyer or Legal representative are too high a price to pay.

    Although I take on board the comments you make regarding the UK system, it doesnt really help to compare – because ultimately the issue is how to make sure you appoint a decent, professional, honest and ethical Lawyer here in Spain, and irrespective of how the system works in the UK – this is a different Country with different legislation and different Laws and therefore you cannot apply the same principals as you would in the UK ….. at the end of the day you need representation here in Spain and its important to make sure that you can trust that representation.

    Your question regarding knowing how to know a “good one from a bad one” – as with any service provider the first step I would suggest is to check if they are affiliated to any professional bodies, where the Lawyers obtained their qualifications and what legal/bar associations they are registered with or approved by. Any information or quotations relating to their fees, their services, their agreement with you should be in writing even if it were originally gien verbally. The length of time the practice has been in operation – which should also help you obtain testimonials or experiences of others who have used them.

    I genuinely sympathise with any person who has had such a bad experience, and unfortunately I do not believe this sort of practice will ever be fully eradicated – as it wont be in any other Country or in any other Service. Despite the safeguards that are usually in place there are always potential “rogues” who by the nature of their own behaviour will cause harm to others, both financially and emotionally, and potentially spoil or call into question the good name and practice of others in the same service.

    It would be completely incorrect for me to comment on this particular case specifically – But I understand that there is an appeals procedure in all areas of Law, and although you may be staggered that in your case it was possible to launch an appeal, this all forms part of the criminal justice system, and if you are to believe in that system at all, then you have to adhere to all the processes that are in place. Even in notorious murder cases or serious crime – there is generally an appeals procedure that is written into Law – and although we may not agree with it, if it forms part of the criminal justice system then we must allow it.

    I hope that you ultimately receive the outcome that you are hoping for in the final judgement.

  • #92265
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    katy
    Spectator

    We once had an incompetent Solicitor in the UK. He had POA to sell our house as we were overseas. House had a tenant, he mixed up the dates at a cost to us of some £1900. We went through the complaints procedure, took a few months, we received a cheque not only for the loss but all legal fees we had paid. I don’t think that would happen in Spain. The Colegio de Abogados appears to be a sort of Trade association solely interested in protecting their members.

    I do agree there are some good honest Lawyers in Spain but if they are concerned about their reputation they should be pushing the colegios for reform to flush out the bad guys.

  • #92269
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    Anonymous
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    manzanares

    I respect your view on the appeal point, but I don’t agree. I feel in far too many very obvious cases of wrong doing, the appeal in Spain is still allowed. Not only does this make a mockery of justice for those wronged, but sends out a message to the wrong do’ers that their crime might well go unpunished, because however wrong they are, they stand a good chance of a successful appeal. So why should they worry??

    I wasn’t comparing Spain just to UK, but to any country that in my opinion where you stand a better chance of justice if you are clearly in the right, and punishment if you are clearly in the wrong. That also goes for far too many dodgy lawyers!

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