Spanish Government announces law changes to force banks to pay mortgage tax
The Spanish Government has just passed a Decree by which mortgage lenders, rather than borrowers, will from November 12th, pay the Stamp Duty tax charged for the opening of the mortgage. The decree also ensures banks cannot deduct this cost on their tax returns.
With this legislative decision, the executive government has over-ruled the Supreme Court’s recent decision which made the consumer pay the fee.
The government justifies the fast decision due to the fact that the Supreme Court has created a big confusion: In mid-October the Supreme Court changed over 20 years of Case Law by ruling that banks, not borrowers, should pay the tax. Just one day later, the head of the Administrative Chamber put the decision on hold and announced a plenary meeting to discuss it. After deliberating for two days, 28 justices decided 15 to 13 that clients must pay the stamp duty tax after all.
The Government is also mindful of not creating more expensive mortgages and is establishing an agency for financial consumer protection.
The Spanish parliament is also working on transposing the EU’s mortgage credit directive
In the meantime, and within the mortgage field and judicial enforcements of mortgage rights in Spain… there is an important matter going on that is still to be decided by the European Court:
Anticipated maturity clause: Spain is waiting for the decision of the European Court of Justice regarding what Judges need to do when they find this clause in a mortgage deed. This decision will determine the future of many mortgage debtors in Spain.
If you are a mortgage debtor, please contact us so we can take a look to your mortgage deeds.