October 10, 2005 at 7:48 am #51275
As I was away, I missed the article written by Mark about estate agents comission charges. Is there a way that I can read it online?
October 10, 2005 at 10:27 am #59050
It’s coming out next Sunday in the Sunday Times Home Section.
October 10, 2005 at 11:29 am #59051
We saw our lawyers twice whilst in Spain. We have given it a great deal of thought and have decided not to take legal action against the developers. It will be too costly and it seems, unlike the possibility in the UK courts, we would be unlikely to recover all the expenses that we have incurred other than our deposit. We are having our contract declared void by the Notary.This may get the bank to release our funds under the bank guarantee, but probably not ! Our lawyer suspects fraud…she even went so far as too look it up in the dictionary as she could not remember the English translation, as other things have come to light. When the lawyer went to the Town Hall in Marbella, to ask for certain documents, there was nothing under “MARBELLA VISTA GOLF. SL.” They contacted the lawyer for MVG, and asked for these documents…so far nothing. Fortunately, my husband had taken all of our paperwork with us and had the very document our lawyer wanted, to give her the information she needed. It appears that MVG were not the original license holders.
We went to the development and took several photographs. All visible signs of the Eralia name have been removed and there is just one sign saying the name of the architect” in conjunction with MVG.” There are other signs up to sell two building plots for large villas. How can that get passed when our development was revoked ??!!
Our lawyer contacted the Law society to tell them of our situation with Direct Lawyers Marbella. We have to send a signed letter to them and they are going to investigate it. We have been told independently, that it is not like the Law Society in the UK. In Spain, they mainly aim to “protect” the name of their ex Collegiate students. We’ll see what happens. Claire.
October 10, 2005 at 1:58 pm #59053
Claire – I have made good use of my brother in law who’s a criminal lawyer in the city of Malaga and just loves to put a spanner in the works of what he sees as the corrupt and easy-life lawyers of Marbella.
A large firm of Marbella lawyers presented me with a bill for €6,000 for “various services” last year, then refused to give me a breakdown of what those services were. They threw me out of their plush offices when I went along to query it, telling me to pay or they’d take me to court. A quick word with my brother in law, a couple of faxes, and I had a breakdown. We checked off the charges recommended by the Colegio for the services the Marbella firm had provided me, and the bill was reduced to some €460.
Just to annoy them, I refused to pay them a centimo even of the revised bill. I had lovely written evidence of their attempt to defraud me of five and a half thousand euros, which was nice. I still give them a huge smile and a hearty handshake whenever I bump into them at the notary ‘cos I love the way they stare venom at me. 😀
I wouldn’t recommend my brother in law unless you’re fluent in Spanish, but there are other lawyers in the city who speak English and have a similar jealous loathing of their easy money cousins in Marbella.
October 10, 2005 at 6:22 pm #59055
Thanks Bert. That is the same situation we are in, only the sum is 7,000 euro ! 🙁 Unfortunately, our Spanish is not anywhere near fluent.) The lawyers in Marbella will not give us a breakdown either. Our current lawyers have said to them their fees are illegal. After all, the developers did not even start to build. The Town Hall in Marbella revoked the building licence 4 weeks and three days after the contract was signed . If the lawyers HAD done the work they said they would do,they should have found evidence of problems before our contract was signed, or is this another field that is different to that in the UK? Our lawyer says searches should be done in Spain too. Also it took the Marbella lawyers 14 months before they told us of any problem. Marbella vista Golf said they knew long before that time. Go figure!! 🙄
I hope our outcome is as successful as yours.
October 10, 2005 at 6:25 pm #59056
Bert, where our situation IS different, is they took our money up front to pay taxes etc WHEN the building was completed! We are on the back foot!! 👿
October 11, 2005 at 12:24 pm #59059
Aye, getting money back from people is a lot harder than avoiding paying them. I would contact one of the lawyers from this site or find an English speaker in the city of Malaga if your current lawyers are unable or unwilling to go after them.
As I understand it, they MUST provide a breakdown of what they are charging for – usually each task completed by them has a points value attached to it, given by the Colegio de Abogados and each point has a monetary value. That’s how I got them – their charges were over ten times those recommended by the Colegio.
As a sidenote, I know a few other small businesses that recieved similar bills to mine, and were also threatened with court action if they didn’t pay within a week. They all did, so the tactics work.
October 11, 2005 at 4:27 pm #59061
Our current lawyers are very helpful in pursuing this matter. I’ll let you know the outcome !
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