Timeshares in Spain
If you were persuaded to invest in a timeshare, there’s a fair chance that the annual fees have increased dramatically since purchase. Like many others you’ve probably struggled to book your chosen week in your chosen resort. You’ve also probably been persuaded to take continuing finance to fund your initial purchase and the subsequent promised benefits that were to be obtained by buying yet more points.
Many understandably feel anger and frustration knowing they have been lied to, ripped off and sold a product that’s simply not fit for purpose. Paying fees for something they no longer want or can use and fearing that if they do stop paying they will be aggressively pursued by debt collection agents or even taken to court.
But help is at hand with Beat the Banks. We can tell you whether you have the option of a claim under Spanish law, or indeed a claim in the U.K. if you chose to fund your timeshare via a loan. Maybe you simply prefer to relinquish your timeshare – we can help you with that too. All it takes is one simple call to Beat the Banks on 01382 200474, or simply complete our enquiry form and we will be in touch as soon as possible.
Background to Timeshare in Spain
Call it what you like, timeshares, holiday clubs or fractional ownership have been sold in Spain for years. The majority of contracts were taken between 2000-2009, but sales started as far back as the 1980’s. Typically they were sold based on a period of 50 years or perpetuity.
Timeshare touts lured unsuspecting victims to slick sales presentations with the promise of a genuine second-hand re-sale market and the ability to pass the “investment” to their children upon death. As much as one in six would buy on the day. Weeks could be sold a number of times and unavailability led to more mis-selling with existing clients persuaded to move to a points based system to theoretically allow them access to resorts all over the world.
Annual management fees, tied into the length of the contract, have often rocketed from as little as a few hundred pounds a year to, in some cases, thousands. Frankly in many cases you would now be much cheaper simply booking a traditional family holiday.
Can I really claim for being mis-sold
Absolutely is the answer. All we need is for your timeshare to be sold from 1999 onwards and for you to have your paperwork. Unfortunately, this is essential as it’s normally unrecoverable from timeshare companies.
There are two routes to compensation:
Firstly in Spain
In 1998, Spain brought in law 42/98. Effective from 5 January 1999, it was designed to protect those buying timeshares. Right on the back of that on 15 January 1999 came a landmark decision in Spain’s Supreme Court. They ruled that all contracts signed after 5 January 1999 were invalid if over 50 years or more. Effectively outlawing the old style perpetuity contracts that have been used since the 1980’s.
Consumer challenges to the Supreme Court have also now established the need for a cooling off period. Subsequent laws in 1998 and 2012, have made it illegal to accept payments from purchasers within the first 3 months. This also covers the signing of loan agreements within these time periods.
Further Supreme Court judgements have also established that on any timeshare since the start of 1999 the contract can be deemed voidable if it didn’t specifically detail precise information such as the apartment, the unit, the week and set arrival and departure times. This is particularly relevant if purchases were points based for example.
In the U.K.
Most U.K. investors funded their purchase by signing a loan agreement during a sales presentation or a very short time afterwards. The lack of a cooling-off period, plus the illegal or significantly flawed asset being funded can deem the credit agreement in breach of section 140A of the Consumer Credit Act. Claims against U.K. based timeshare purchases may also be possible. Claims may also be possible if the purchase was made via credit card.
Section 140A is all about the existence of an unfair relationship under the Consumer Credit Act. Agreements taken before April 2007 but still in place after April 2008 meet the criteria as do any agreements taken after April 2008
If successful the loan agreement is set aside and compensation is based on 90% of the losses incurred (payments) until that point, plus simple interest of 8%.
At Beat the Banks our expert team are here to answer all your questions on reclaiming for mis-sold timeshares. Simply give our team a call on –01382 20474 or complete our enquiry form on this page and we’ll be in touch. You are also more than welcome to pop into our office with your paperwork.