Timeshare in Spain

TimeshareAll contracts trading rights to use one or more real estate in Spain during a specific or specifiable period along the year in Spain are under Timeshare Act whatever place and date of contracting.

Time share rights are those which give to the holder the faculties for use and enjoyment of an independent dwelling, with exclusive character, for a specific period of time within the year. It includes the necessary furniture for this use and the complementary services.

The Spanish regulation considers time-share as a type of seasonal rental. The holder of time-share rights does not acquire ownership rights but the right to use the property for a specific period of time. The duration of these rights is not indefinite; the developers of these type of complexes needs to specify the period for the enjoyment of these rights which will always need to be between 3-50 years. Ownership remains being the developers´.

Because ownership is of developer´s, this can sell ownership rights always with the limitations derived from the existence of other person´s use and enjoyment rights on the sold unit, which will remain for the contracted period.

Provision 1.4 of Law 42/1998 prohibited the denomination of those rights as “multiownership” or any other way containing the word “ownership”  “ owner” or “property”.

For this reason, any contract signed in Spain contained the word “ownership or property” (propiedad) is null and void and you have rights to the refund of money paid plus legal interests.

In Spain, the denomination that was finally chosen, as most appropriate, descriptive and loyal to Law is “derecho de aprovechamiento por turno”,which means “right to use and enjoyment  in shifts”

Publicity or promotion of these type of developments can never either contain the word “propiedad”(property or ownership).

Together with desisting from or cancelling the time share contract, possibilities that are subject to a shorter deadline, there is the possibility, initially sine die (without deadline) to apply for the nullity of the contract.

In which cases?

– When timeshare rights are transmitted disregarding the imperative Law which regulates them.

– When the transmission of time share rights are made before the scheme is currently constituted.

– When there is a lack of veracity on information provided to the buyer.

The action for the refund of amounts linked to the nullity has a 15 years deadline.

There is numerous precedents in Spanish Courts for the nullity and refund of money if you were sold under the term ” propiedad”

The important issue of adaptation
From January 1999 any preexisting timeshare regime needs to adapt to this Law. If this has not happened, any holder of timeshare rights will be able to request a Judge to compel the developer to do so.

Adaptation will always require a Notary deed and proper registration in the Land Registry.

Adaptation will respect the nature of rights which were transmitted by virtue of the old private contract. If ownership was transmitted, this is what it will have to be registered after approval of simple majority of Community of owners.

All old contracts will have a time limit of 50 years unless parties have agreed otherwise or parties mutually or freely agree in the adaptation deed on a different definitive or non-definitive period.

If the owner of the development does not comply with the obligation of adapting the regime to this new regulation, the holder of timeshare rights will have rights to cancel the contract with effective devolution of amounts and compensation of damages.

If you are thinking about selling, buying or use your rights to cancel a timeshare contract, please contact us for more information.

Recent development of Supreme Court Case Law in Spain (July 2016) has consolidated the right interpretation of Law 42/98 which has been in force since 2012.

These Court decisions mainly establish the null character of timeshare contracts if

(1) They were signed for an indefinite period of time, or if

(2) They did not specify the estate to be enjoyed

Declaration of nullity of these contracts produce the obligation for the Timeshare to hand back all paid amounts less those assigned to the years the consumer has effectively enjoyed the resort.

Action can be brought jointly and severally against the Bank or financer if finance was linked to the contract.

We have been acting for Timeshare rights holders for years and will be pleased to assist you with this if you need.

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