Spanish banks set to pay billions in compensation to British victims of costas’ property crash
Spanish Supreme Court ruling offers hope to the estimated 100,000 Britons who became casualties of Spain’s financial meltdown
Judgment will force Spanish banks to hand back as much as £4bn to Brits who paid deposits for holiday homes that were never built
Average deposit paid per property was around £40,000, with victims now able to claim a full refund plus interest
Barcelona, June 2016 – A landmark judgment by Spain’s Supreme Court could finally offer closure to the estimated 100,000 Britons whose dreams of owning a place in the sun ended in a nightmare.
The ruling paves the way for anyone who paid a deposit to secure an “off-plan” property – but lost it in Spain’s financial crisis – to claim back the money.
The Spanish Costas are still littered with unfinished holiday homes after the country’s financial meltdown in 2008 drove hundreds of property developers out of business.
Would-be buyers who had paid deposits averaging £40,000 never saw their money again as building firms went bankrupt or simply disappeared.
But now a decision by Spain’s highest court to hold banks responsible for the missing money deposited in their accounts could allow British victims to claim back up to £4bn in lost deposits, according to research by the law firm Spanish Legal Reclaims.
Despite the lack of official data, the firm estimates that Spanish banks could be forced to refund up to £15bn to “off-plan” buyers from across Europe who lost their deposits in the crash.
They include Stephanie Davis and her late husband who lost around 75,000 Euros on a house they tried to buy on the Costa del Sol. They bought it “off plan”, and had paid a deposit and several additional payments, totalling half of the 150,000 Euro asking price. They were within days of completing the purchase when the developer, Martinsa Fadesa went into liquidation and she was promised that she would get her money back… but so far she has received just 700 Euros! Stephanie is now retired and living in stretched circumstances after losing so much money. She is desperately hoping that the ruling will force the bank that held her money on behalf of the developer to pay it back. She says, “If I could get my money back that would be amazing”
With more Britons owning a holiday home in Spain than any other nationality, UK citizens were hit disproportionately hard by Spain’s catastrophic property crash.
Spanish Legal Reclaims’ research shows that as many as 100,000 Britons who had paid deposits to reserve an off-plan property in Spain lost some or all their money when the country’s construction industry imploded.
Emilio Alvarez, Legal strategist at Spanish Legal Reclaims, explains: “As relatively small creditors, their chances of getting back their money from a bankrupt developer through the conventional insolvency process were virtually nil.
“But the ruling by Spain’s Supreme Court sets a crucial precedent – that the banks that held buyers’ deposits can in many cases be held liable for their loss.
“While this is wonderful news for the thousands of Britons who became innocent victims of Spain’s financial meltdown, the banks have proved reluctant to pay back what they owe without a fight.
“Spanish Legal Reclaims has unparalleled expertise in this area of law, and has formed a dedicated legal team to help non-Spaniards who lost out lodge a successful claim and win their money back.”
Spanish Legal reclaims can be contacted by telephone in Spain on 93 680 4563 or in the UK on 0845 680 3849. Alternatively by email to:
firstname.lastname@example.org. Also visit: www.spanishlegalreclaims.com