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Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership in Spain

Raymundo Larrain Nesbitt - Lawbird Legal Services
14th of November 2007

Do you own your property jointly with your spouse, friend, partner or anyone and wish to terminate this situation? Read below and find out how can you save thousands of Euros by avoiding the higher taxes of selling and buying the share of the outgoing joint owner.

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A Deed of Dissolution of Joint Ownership allows joint owners to re-arrange their share on any property in a tax-efficient manner as it enables the outgoing joint owner to transfer his share to the existing joint owner legally avoiding the extreme 7% Transfer Tax plus the complications of having to allow the buyer to make a retention on the value of the share transferred for Capital Gains Tax which is only recoverable many months after the deeds are signed.

The only tax involved under this arrangement is of 1% of the declared value of the property, plus the ordinary notary, land registry and legal fees.

This legal procedure is most suitable in a number of cases involving joint property ownership:

  • The most common scenario occurs when couples owning property in joint names whose relationship has come to an end decide that one of them will assume full ownership.
  • In many case beneficiaries of an inheritance who have effectively inherited a share in a property may decide to transfer it to another joint-owner.
  • Also, friends who are joint-owners of property may simply opt out for unspecified reasons.
If you are fiscal resident in Spain you can deduct the legal costs of this procedure on filing your Spanish Income tax as long as the dwelling is regarded legally as your primary residence (“residencia habitual”).


What Happens with the Mortgage?


If the property was subject to a mortgage which is intended to continue after the transfer of the share it will be necessary to obtain the permission of the lender to discharge the outgoing joint owner, who obviously will not be willing to continue guaranteeing the loan. Alternatively, some borrowers may use this opportunity to arrange a new mortgage with a different lender often at a substantially lower cost. Your lawyer should also be able to help you with this.


One of the Co-Owners Refusing to Sell?


There are times in which one of the joint-owners may decide he needs to sell the property and the others refuse to buy it from him, either because they don’t have the money to buy his share or simply because they refuse to sell the property all together. In these cases a dissolution of joint-ownership may be enforced by a law court (arts 406 and 1062 Civil Code). The drawback is that the asset will be sold in a public auction which will fetch a price far below the market value. This is only advisable as a last resort where there is a serious disagreement, as all joint owners stand to lose.


Expenses and Fees Involved

As purchaser the only tax involved is 1% Stamp Duty on the whole declared value, besides notary, land registry and lawyer’s fees.

The vendor of the outgoing share is liable for Cgt at 18% on e.g. the 50% outgoing share (if non-fiscal resident he will be subject to a retention of 3% on the 50% on account of his Cgt liability) and municipal Plusvalía tax. Besides this he will have to pay his own lawyer.

At your request we can provide a study case with a breakdown of expenses and fees as an example.

Arrangement


This process can be arranged in a few days without any need for you to come over to Spain by means of granting your lawyer a specific power of attorney. Your lawyer should be able to undertake the necessary preparations, sign the deed and register the new ownership with the Land Registry.

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Should you be interested in this service, or if you need more information, please visit the Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership service page at the Lawbird site.
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Discuss this Article

  • Jackie Says:

    Hi, I'm divorcing my husband and are in the process of transfering the property into my sole name. My solicitor says I have to pay 7% transfer tax. Is this true? Your article says it's only 1%.
  • Inigo Says:

    Hello Jackie The subject is rather complex, and further information is needed before an answer can be provided. To simplify things, we will assume that you are non resident, and are transfering just one property (indivisible). Generally speaking, 1% Stamp Duty is applicable if there's payment in money in exchange of the share that is being transferred (after deducting the corresponding part of the mortgage). If no payment is made at all, the transfer will be considered by the taxman as a donation, and taxed accordingly (not recommendable!) There are some circumstances in which 7% transfer tax is applicable, specifically in cases in which payment is done in kind (e.g. a car, furniture, etc), instead of money. In any case, I recommend that you submit your question to a Tax Advisor experienced in Spanish Tax Law.
  • Sandra Says:

    ey!!! Que cambio de imagen!muy bonito. Congrats!
  • liz Says:

    We are non-resident and I bought a property in Spain with money I had from the sale of a house I owned alone in England. However, we bought the Spanish house in my and my husband's names thinking it was like the UK. Then my husband was seriously ill and as I am also younger we have considered putting the house in just my name so that our adult children won't be liable for IHT that they can't afford should only one of us die (I appreciate I could go under a bus but we were looking at most likely outcome!). Obviously would not plan to "pay" my husband. So is it 1% or 7%? I can show the money was originally mine in the UK, does this help?
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Madam, It would be 1% Stamp Duty as it would be clearly a Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership. If you want an example study case with breakdown of legal fees, expenses and taxes involved contact us free of compromise to request it. Regards, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • batty Says:

    Hi I have to comment on your postive responses as i have been struggling and getting responses from other that i have to pay all the ridiculus charges discussed above. my situation is that i have purchased a home in spain and have part of the mortgae outstanding (140e) and my husband and my names are both on the deed and mortgage. i have paid all expenses including the mortage for the last 2and half years as my husband has no work and also got himself into bad debt trying to venture to set up his own company. the problem now is thatmy current bank is refusing to change my mortage it is around 1000 euros for 140k loan and repayment one. refusing to give me interest only. hard to sell property unless i sell it at a loss. i have already invested a 100 euros in it. i also belive it may not be valued at what i bought it for. I have manged to find an english lender with a great mortgage deal on interest only but as my husbands name is on it they want give it to me untill i remove his name. due to his credit history being poor. to take his name off sounds like an expensive exercise and again more expenses for me.he is very willing to give up his name /rights and not looking for anything as the proeprty was bought by me for our little girl as an investment from my savings anyway. i have said this to the bankbut they want have it. switching bank is going to cost me money and will also have to pay my bank for giving up the mortgage . so i am in catch 22 situation . surely there must be an easy way of taking a name of .Spainish law seems to want taxes for everything sorry to say this. i have already paid and not made a penny . help please. thanks
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Madam, To take your name off the deed Transfer tax and associated expenses have to be paid. This is just not simply having your name removed from it.
  • john evans Says:

    Bought a house in spain in joint names with my wife in 1983. We divorced in england 1989 with clean break settllement with my wife giving up her share in the house in Spain. The house is still registard in both names. I wish to sell the property and my ex agrees to give me power of attorney to sell her half. If I should die before this happens I can see all sorts of problems arising. I was told years ago by a spanish abogado that there was no need to change anything as since Spain joined the EEC English divorce papers were reconised. The agent tells me I need to change it officialy, but my concern with that is, will I lose the benifits of nil capital gains tax as it was bought before 1986 and not having to leave 3% holding fee. Also would there be charges, by changing it into my name only via the divorce papers other than legal fees?
  • buddy Says:

    My mother bought an apartment in spain with her partner 7 years ago, he died 5 years ago. In his will he left his share to her, but nothing has been done officially to change the ownership. She may need to sell the apartment in the next two years. Should she change the deeds/ownership to her name before she sells, and if so how much tax would she have to pay? Or should she wait until she sells? what tax would she be liable for then? Thank you for yur help in this
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Sir, Your mother cannot sell what's not hers. She first has to lodge the 50% bequeathed by her partner under her name at the land registry prior to selling on the property. No Spanish Notary will allow the sale of a property whose not under the name of the vendor, it's a criminal offence ruled by art 251 of Spain's Criminal Code. Your mother would have to hire a Spanish lawyer and do as follows: 1.- Depending on the nationality of her partner, a grant of probate. 2.- Deed of Declaration of Heirs by which she's appointed as the sole beneficiary of the remainding 50%. 3.- Lodge this deed at the land registry and pay any associated taxes such as Death duties. As 5 years haver already gobe by she will not have to pay Spanish Inheritance Tax albeit her lawyer will still have to fill in the tax model otherwise the property will not be registered under her name. 4.- Once the proeprty is fully under her name she's free to do with it as she pleases. I take the opportunity to offer her our legal service on Estate Transfer to Heirs: Estate Transfer to Heirs This service is intended for those who are inheriting the Spanish assets of a deceased person, whether as the legal heir to an estate or by means of a will The Estate transfer to heirs service includes • Requesting of copies of the Death Certificate, in the event that the death took place in Spain. • Requesting of a Will Certificate information and location from the Central Registry of Wills in Madrid. • Obtaining of the Will from the Notary Public where it was signed / Estate Heirs Statement (in those cases where there is no will) • Inheritance Acceptance • Partition of the inheritance according to what the will states, or, where there is now will, to the desires of the inheritors . • Inscription at the Land Registry of the new owners of the Estate inherited. • Arrangement of payment of the applicable Inheritance Tax.
  • Carolyn Says:

    I am selling my share of a spanish property to my ex-partner. Because of the fall in the property market the amount he is paying me is the same as we purchased the property for approx 4 years ago - based on valuations by local estate agents. Please can you confirm: 1. that I will therefore not have to pay 18% CGT as there is no gain, and the 3% will not be withheld, 2. will plusvalia tax still be payable, and 3. as the mortgage is only in his name will we have to pay fees for a new escritoria and should I have to pay for this or is it his cost? If there are any other costs I should consider please could you advise what these would be. Many thanks
  • mark evans Says:

    hello,i have 5% of a villa and my friend had 95%,he recently passed away ,do i have to sell my villa or do i now own the whole villa,many thanks.
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Sir, The beneficiaries of your friend will presumably inherit the villa, not yourself. Why did you think you would inherit it? Are you the beneficiary of his last will? Perhaps it may be a good idea if you add more information in your next post so we can advice better.
  • John Says:

    My ex-wife and I owned a property in Spain together. We have since divorced and she left her part of the house to me in the divorce settlement in exchange for a property in the UK which I bought for her. The deeds are still in both our names and when I saw a lawyer in Spain he said that we needed to pay about 8000 euros to transfer the deeds solely into my name. This seems an awful lot of money. This figure is based on a value of 400,000 euros but I think the house is now worth a lot less. Is there any way we can avoid paying this amount?
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Sir, 8,000€ seems about right. It's 1% of 400k= 4.000€ Land registry & Notary fees plus lawyer's fees= 3.000/4.000€. The alternative is to pay 7% Transfer tax plus all the additional expenses.
  • tinska Says:

    Can anyone put my mind at rest - I am in the middle of a rather nasty divorce & we jointly own a property in Spain, without a mortgage & both names on the deeds (we live in the UK). Can my husband have my name taken off without my knowledge? Please put my mind at rest someone & let me know................Many thanks
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Tinska, No, your husband cannot have your name removed from the Title deed unless you expressly authorise it either yourself in person at a notary or else by way of a proxy (i.e. lawyer with a POA). You are both joint owners of a property in Spain with equal rights. Please contact us if you are interested in following a dissolution of joint property ownership. We will explain in detail what this procedure involves. Signing a deed of dissolution of joint property ownership is the most cost effective and tax efficient way in cases as yours when divorce proceedings are being followed. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Sue Says:

    Hi, My situation is the other way round. My partner has bout some land in Spain and signed the paperwork in his sole name. He has not yet paid the notary so we are keen to get it paid as the cost is increasing with interest being added. My partner would like to add my name to the paperwork so tha the land is jointly owned. Can you please advise how we would go about doing this.
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Madam, You only have to hire a lawyer to have the land under joint names in the Title deed signed at completion. The plot of land will be lodged at the land registry under joint names. Please let us know if we can assit you in the conveyance. Yours faithfully,
  • oly Says:

    Like the previous poster, we have a property in Spain which is in my husband's sole name. We would like to add my name to the deed. Are there any issues since he has owned this property for several years already? Thank you.
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Oly, Your case would not be a dissolution of joint property ownership as you were not joint owners; your husband was the sole propietor. Your husband would have to sell you outright his 50% share on the property. You would pay 7% Transfer tax plus all the associated fees and expenses. You can read our article on the matter of taxes to be paid on buying a resale: Buying Property in Spain: An Overview - 3rd of April 2000 The article is almost ten years old now, so quite a few things are outdated, specifically the tax figures mentioned. I take the opportunity to offer you our conveyance service should you be interested. You can contact us for more details on this legal service. We act nationwide. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Paul Says:

    Hi Me and my sister equally own an appartment in Majorca with no out standing morgage and we are both UK residents. My sister no longer wants to be on the deeds of the appartment and is will to sign full ownership over to me with no payment in exchange. What is the process to take her name off the deeds and what taxes/ fee are applicable. thank you for your assistance
  • Barbara Says:

    Hi, Im separating from my husband and we own a house in Spain but are non residents I wish to keep my half of the house and my ex wishes to sell to my sister and husband. We owe no debt on the house. Could this not be a private exchange of money in England and just pay in Spain for name change on the deeds ?
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Paul, Money must be exchanged otherwise it's a gift and you shall be taxed under Gift tax sliding scale which is the same as for Inheritance Tax.
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Barbara, His purchasers have to pay in Spain 7% Transfer tax and your ex partner, as a vendor, will have to pay both Capital Gains Tax and Plus valía tax on his 50%. Please read our articles on the mater: Buying Property from a Private Seller - 15th of March 2000 Taxes when Selling Spanish Property - 2nd of May 2002 Buying Property in Spain: An Overview - 3rd of April 2000 Yours faithfully,
  • David Says:

    My business partner and I own a property jointly in Spain (50/50) in our personal names but with the beneficial ownership in favour of our UK company, which in turn had borrowed the funds from another company to facilitate the purchase. Since the property was purchased in 2003 it is assumed that there has been a negligible change in value plus the original loan is still outstanding and therefore equivalent to the value of the property, hence there is no residual value (equity). It is intended that I sell my shares in the UK company to him (subject to UK CGT) to him and transfer the ownership of the property to him for no money (i.e. because there is no residual value above the outstanding mortgage). Am I correct in my understanding that we can do this through a dissolution of joint ownership with him paying the 1% stamp duty instead of the 7% transfer tax (both plus fees)? Because we have assumed no change in value and therefore no capital gain will I avoid Spanish CGT on my outgoing share in the property? It there anything else we should consider, other than ultimately taking specific legal advice? Thank you
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Sir, I don't see why you cannot follow a dissolution of joint property ownership and pay 1% Stamp Duty on the full value of the property. Money will have to be exchanged in Spain for the 50% otherwise it could well be understood this transaction is subject to Gift tax which follows the same sliding scale as IHT. Regarding the comments you make on equity left in the property, they are unrelated to CGT and you are confusuing it with IHT mitigation. The outgoing share will be subject to both CGT taxed at 18% and Plus Valía tax. Let me know if you need our assistance to make it work. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • melvyn Says:

    I purchased a property (apartment) on the Costa Blanca for an investment and a holiday home, therefore I am a non resident in spain. I paid in full and all taxes/ bills etc myself and have no mortage. However, when I bought it I placed my partners name on the deeds thinking it was the right thing to do and be an investment to her if in the event anything happended to me. Unfortunately she has MS which has now worsened and now is unable to work and of course she lives alone and has no money. She is worried now that she cannot claim UK benefits (housing and council tax benefits) because her name is on the title deeds as if she owns a property abroad even though she has not paid a penny to any costs. I have proof of payments from my UK bank account for the purchace of the property. To put her mind to rest she desperately wants her name off of the title deeds. I thought it would be no problem like the UK but now I am worried its going to be an expensive 7% tax for me(again) or a reasonable 1% with costs.
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Melvyn, From your post I understand that the property is solely under the name of your partner. In that case only she is entitled to the sales proceeds regardless of who paid for the property, in other words, you have no rights on this property. If you want to buy it outright from her, you are going to have to pay the full costs of an associated conveyance procedure, that is including 7% Transfer tax. You cannot follow a dissolution of joint property ownership because you don't even hold 1% of the property. I take the opportunity to offer you our conveyance service if you are interested. We act nationwide. Yours faithfully,
  • melvyn Says:

    Now you are really worrying me. I paid for the property and BOTH our names are on the title deeds. All she wants is to opt out and have her name removed.
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    There's no reason to worry, from your post above it just wasn't clear that it was held under joint names, that's all. If both of your names are in the Title deed you will have no problem following a dissolution of joint property ownership as per the article the starts off this thread. Contact us if we can assit you in this legal service as you will need to hire a lawyer to do it. Regards,
  • helga Says:

    hi i have a property in spain in my sole name i want to sign it over as part divorce settlement at what cost and how to do this
  • Cecelia Says:

    Hi. My husband and I were given a house in spain his father for a present. I do not know if the title was put in both our names, or only his. We have since divorced and he has told the courts that he has never owned property in Spain. Is there a way I can do a search to see if any properties are or were owned by my ex-husband if I do not have the address of the property? Is this possible to find out? Thanks!
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Cecilia, Yes it's possible to find out. All you need to do is hire a Land Registry Search through us. It normally takes less than 24 hours. Contact us to hire it. Yours faithfully,
  • Cecilia Says:

    Can you als do a search on what property someone used to own but has sold? I have the date range in which the property would have been owned. Can this be done too? What information do you need on the owner? Full Name and Date of Birth only? I have the region in Spain as wel if that helps the limit the search.
  • paul Says:

    Hi, my mum recently past away leaving a house in Spain. The house was bought initially by my mum, dad and sister who's names appear on the deeds, my mother has left the her share of the house to dad. My dad has been told he has to pay 3000e to change the deeds but no information of why has been given. The value of the house is around 130K e . could you please advise me? Regards
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Cecilia, No, it can not be done. You would have to go personally and request it from the land regisrty.
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Paul, Your case relates to a transfer of estate to heirs not to a dissolution of joint property ownership. Please read the following articles: Estate Transfer to Heirs Spanish Inheritance Tax: Advantages of Making a Will in Spain - 3rd of September 2009 I take the opportunity to offer you our legal service on Estate Transfer to Heirs: Estate Transfer to Heirs This service is intended for those who are inheriting the Spanish assets of a deceased person, whether as the legal heir to an estate or by means of a will. The Estate transfer to heirs service includes: • Requesting of copies of the Death Certificate, in the event that the death took place in Spain. • Requesting of a Will Certificate information and location from the Central Registry of Wills in Madrid. • Obtaining of the Will from the Notary Public where it was signed / Estate Heirs Statement (in those cases where there is no will) • Inheritance Acceptance • Partition of the inheritance according to what the will states, or, where there is now will, to the desires of the inheritors . • Inscription at the Land Registry of the new owners of the Estate inherited. • Arrangement of payment of the applicable Inheritance Tax. __________________ Yours faithfully,
  • Gerry Says:

    My wife and I bought a property in Spain in 2005 and my wifes mother and step-father moved into the house as permanent residents (we both remain non-residents). Just prior to signing the contract we were advised to add my father-in-laws name to the title deeds on the basis that this would enable him to receive health care, open a bank account etc. Last year my mother-in-law passed away and my father-in-law has now returned to live permanently again in the UK. My wife and I are now considering ways to have my father-in-laws name removed from the title deeds (he is fully agreeable to this). What would be the best way to do this - would we incurr 1% Stamp Duty or 7% Transfer Tax?
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Gerry, You would incur in the 1% Stamp Duty on the whole value of the property as per my article, yes. Please contact us if you are interested in hiring this legal service through us: Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership Yours faithfully,
  • Stephen Says:

    My mother and i bought a property in the Canaries around 4 years ago. We now want to take my mums name off the property and I to become the sole owner. We have a joint spanish mortgage. Is my case the same as Gerrys above and the transaction will incur a 1% fee? Many thanks.
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Stephen, In your case you could follow a DJPO as you were already a joint owner along with your mother. You would buy her out essentially. You would pay 1% Stamp Duty on the full value of the property. She would pay CGT taxed at 18% and Plus Valía tax. Please contact us if you wish to hire us for this legal service. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • susan smith Says:

    my friend and i bought a property together in spain , she has suddenly died and we never made a spanish or english will what will happen to her share of the property and will i be able to sell it.
  • leslee lewis Says:

    hi my son want s his name taken off out joint spanish mortagage and deeds. is this poss and is it expensive. My partner would like to take over his interest in the small property. Thank u
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Ms Smith, An inheritance procedure must be followed. In this case intestacy rules would apply if there is no will. Her beneficiaries must be located to claim her Spanish estate. Please read our article on the matter: Spanish Inheritance Tax: Advantages of Making a Will in Spain - 3rd September 2009 Yours faithfully,
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Mrs Lewis, Does your partner already hold a percentege of the property? If yes then they can follow a legal procedure known as Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership. Your partner would pay 1% Stamp Duty only on the full value of the property besides expenses thus waiving 7% Transfer tax. He will effectively safe himself 6% tax. If the reply is no then your partner will have to buy his share outright through a normal conveyance procedure which has associated 7% Transfer tax besides expenses. Please contact us if you are interested in hiring this legal service. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Luis Vicente - Abogado Says:

    Buenos dias compañeros. Un cliente me mando el link porque le extrañó despues que le pedí el 3% de retención al ser el copropietario que cedia sus derechos en la disolución de la comunidad de bienes un no residente. Durante muchos años igual que vosotros yo consideraba que en los casos de sisolución no había retención del 3%. Desde hace meses tanto Joaquin Crespo como Amelia Bergillos (ambos notarios de la plaza como bien sabeis) la realizan dado que elevaron una consulta a la Agencia Tributaria los cuales contestaron que efectivamente era obligatoria la retención en los casos de liquidación de comunidad de bienes porque podía perfectamente existir un incremento patrimonial en el acuerdo de liquidación, incremento sujeto al impuesto. Si quereis podeis contactarme a mi o directamente a los notarios referidos. Un saludo Luis
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Estimado Compañero: Gracias por contribuir en este foro. Es un foro abierto a la participación de cualquier compañero que lo estime oportuno. En relación a tu comentario sólo puntualizar que el propio artículo en cuestión, que da origen al presente hilo, hace referencia a la necesidad de retener el 3% en el caso de que el transmitente sea un no residente fiscal: Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership in Spain - 14th November 2007 Expenses and Fees Involved As purchaser the only tax involved is 1% Stamp Duty on the whole declared value, besides notary, land registry and lawyer’s fees. The vendor of the outgoing share is liable for Cgt at 18% on e.g. the 50% outgoing share (if non-fiscal resident he will be subject to a retention of 3% on the 50% on account of his Cgt liability) and municipal Plusvalía tax. Besides this he will have to pay his own lawyer. At your request we can provide a study case with a breakdown of expenses and fees as an example. En todas las extinciones de condominio en las que hemos intervenido se ha practicado la retención del 3% por el copropietario adquirente cuando el transmitente reunía la condición de no residente fiscal. En mi anterior respuesta a la Sra Lewis he omitido mencionarlo por error, de ahí la confusión. Saludos, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • angelacatt Says:

    Hi, I bought a property in Spain nearly two years ago with my partner. We have just separated and I would really like to remove his name from the property which we own 50/50. We have a mortgage for nearly the whole amount and my partner has never put in a penny, either with the deposit or the mortgage. He therefore agrees that I do not need to pay his off. Reading above though, am I to understand that there will be a gift tax? How can I get around this? The property was bought for 140,000 and was valued then at 169,000 and we have an outstanding mortgage for 134,000. What other charges would there be? I really need a rough estimate to know how much money needs to be found and who is liable to pay what. We bought the property as residents as we planned to carry on living in Spain but we have moved back to England and have been here for nearly two years. As we bought as residents I am supposed to pay in my 'sueldo' to the mortgage account every month so I transfer money back and forward between our joint account and my account so that there is movement of money. All money has come from me and not my partner. Could this help in proving he has not paid anything? Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance.
  • Paul Taylor Says:

    Hi, My wife and I have built a property in Spain on Rustic land of 10,000m2 together with another couple, the property conforms with the legislation in that it is 2% of the land size and measures 200m2, the property was passed/signed off as one dwelling however we now want to seperate it into two dwellings, will this be possible and what will it involve. Regards Paul
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Sir, I doubt the planning authorities will agree to your proposal. That would imply having to segregate the plot of land to create two separate plots thus dividing legally the estate drawing up a deed before a Notary. I doubt your town hall will agree to this. In any case you don't lose anything by requesting it from them formally. Yours faithfully,
  • Lady Jane Says:

    is the Disolution of Joint Property Ownership the best efficient and economical way of removing one name from a title deed and land registry for a property inherited 50/50
  • aflores Says:

    Dear Sir/Madam, This is definetely the best and cheapest form of transferring 50% of the remaining ownership on one property from one property owner to another as all other ways imply having to pay 7% transfer tax. Regards
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Madam, As my colleague writes above, a Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership is the most efficient solution from a tax mitigation point of view. Please feel free to request more details from us if you are interested. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Mrs G Says:

    My Mum and Partner and I bought a property in Spain 5 years ago. They are both on the deeds and mortgage. I contributed equally to the property purchase since it was purchased but was not reflected on the deeds, yet am benefactor in the Spanish will set up. They have now split and I would like to continue ownership buying out the 33% Share of my mothers ex partner. Please can you advise is DJPO to my mothers sole name the best way to do this or am I best to buy out his share as a normal conveyance and pay 7% Tax meaning that myself and my mother are reflected on the deeds.
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Mrs G, You cannot undertake a Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership as you are not a co-owner of the property. Only your mother and her now ex-partner are lodged at the land registry as such. Therefore, regrettably, you don't have the DJPO option. You would have to buy his share outright paying a 7% Transfer Tax on the 50% as you write, yes. Legally it is irrelevant if you are beneficiary of her Last Will or if you contributed with 1% or 100% towards the property. It is only relevant who appears lodged as title holder at the Land Registrar to follow a DJPO (re-arrangement of share ownership). Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Mrs M Says:

    My Husband and I are both residents in spain. We own 2 properties joint names. We seperated last year and although we are now together again we want to transfer the names on the deeds so we own one property each. Do I understand correctly that we would therefore have to pay 1% of each property plus legal costs plus 18% on the 50% we are signing over to the other?? Therefore if in the future we seperated or Divorced there would be no problems as the properties would be sole owned??
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Madam, Basically those are the expenses involved, yes. Quoting an excerpt of my article: Expenses and Fees Involved As purchaser the only tax involved is 1% Stamp Duty on the whole declared value, besides notary, land registry and lawyer’s fees. The vendor of the outgoing share is liable for CGT at 18% on e.g. the 50% outgoing share (if non-fiscal resident he will be subject to a retention of 3% on the 50% on account of his Cgt liability) and municipal Plusvalía tax. Besides this he will have to pay his own lawyer. If you separate or divorce the properties will be already solely under your respective names. If you are both fiscal residents in Spain and are able to provide a letter from the Tax office confirming it, the 3% retention on each 50% transferred will not be enforceable. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Angela Says:

    Hi, I bought a property in Spain nearly two years ago with my partner. We have just separated and I would really like to remove his name from the property which we own 50/50. We have a mortgage for nearly the whole amount and my partner has never put in a penny, either with the deposit or the mortgage. He therefore agrees that I do not need to pay him off. I have been reading into this though and am I to understand that there will be a gift tax? How can I get around this? The property was bought for 140,000 and was valued then at 169,000 and we have an outstanding mortgage for 134,000. What other charges would there be? I really need a rough estimate to know how much money needs to be found and who is liable to pay what. We bought the property as residents as we planned to carry on living in Spain but we have moved back to England and have been here for nearly two years. As we bought as residents I am supposed to pay in my 'sueldo' to the mortgage account every month so I transfer money back and forward between our joint account and my account so that there is movement of money. All money has come from me and not my partner. Could this help in proving he has not paid anything? Any help would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance.
  • aflores Says:

    Dear Angela, If you wish to put the property in your name you will need to go through a Notary process. You can claim from you ex-partner what you wish is entitled but this can only be done through the Courts in a lengthy and expensive procedure, which I don’t recommend you pursue. What you can therefore do is agree with your ex-partner that you both attend signing at the Notary Public office and transfer the property to you, after which taxes will have to be paid and the title deeds registered in your name. Typically the cost of this will be: 1% Transfer Duty (Stamp Duty) on the value of the property. Notary fees: 700 Euros approx. Land Registry fees: 600 Euros approx. Legal fees: 950 Euros plus VAT. This can be arranged via power of attorney to us or personally by you coming to Spain to attend signing at the Notary. You will require NIE numbers to be able to sign the deeds.
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Angela, A Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership (DJPO, for short) is the best solution from a cost efficient angle as it's tax efficient. Any other solution implies paying more taxes to the Spanish taxman. Your partner is a registered owner of 50% of the proeprty. Therefore under our laws he is entitled to 50% of the sale's proceeds regardless if he contributed or not to the property. You have three options: 1. If you want to follow a DJPO he (or you) will have to pay 1% Stamp Duty on the full property value. You will of course have to pay him 50% of the value of the property as well as land registry, notary and legal fees. 2. If you want to buy him outright you will have to pay 7% Transfer tax. As well as all teh associated transfer expenses (land registry, notary and lawyer's fees). And of course you will have to pay him the 50%. 3. If he wants to "gift" you his 50% share you will attract Spain's Gift sliding tax scale which is the same for Inheritance Tax albeit with none of it's tax allowances meaning it's the most expensive option from a tax mitigation point of view. As he's only your partner (meaninmg you are not married) you are classified as being in Group IV which means you will pay dearly as there is no kinship. I would recommend you follow option 1 which is why I wrote the article so foreigners were aware that you could wave paying 6% Transfer tax and pay instead only 1% tax. If you are interested in hiring thsi service please contact us and we will explain further. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • baz howard Says:

    we want to sell our 50% share of our jointly owned house in spain but the other couple refuse to sell,how long and at what cost would it be to achieve the dissolution of joint ownership enforced by court ,thanks baz howard
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Sir, Through the law courts it would have a cost in the region of 6,000€. Please contact us if you are interested. Yours faithfully,
  • Avril Says:

    is there an upper limit on the transfer duty? My soon to be ex has agreed to give me the villa we jointly own in spain - the villa is probably valued at 1 million euros which means at 1% I would need to find 10,000 Euros plus the other fees which is a lot of money. can you also advise how the property value is established - is it market value or the valor castral ? thanks
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Madam, Normally it's the value at which it was bought (the prior Title deed). When you write that your ex has agreed to transfer you his 50% on the property is this as a result of divorce proceeds in the UK? Is there a UK ruling establishing he must hand you over this property? Let me know if I can assist you in the transfer of your property. Yours sincerely, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Joe Says:

    I'm buying a property in Spain from my father. What are taxes for a transaction of this type?
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Joe, I take it you do not hold a pre-existing share on your father's property. Otherwise you would only pay 1% Stamp Duty as per the article that starts off this very thread. As I take for granted it's a resale you would have to pay the following: Taxes 1. Transfer tax of 7% on the value of the property Associated Expenses 1. Notary fees 2. Land registry fees 3. Lawyer's fees - usually 1% of the value of the property subject to a minimum legal fee which in our case is €1,300. More details in our article: Buying Property in Spain: An Overview - 3rd April 2000 Plase note the above article was written a decade ago, so all mention to taxes is outdated. Both the taxes and the concepts still remain the same but all mention to figures and percentages (even to Pesetas!) is outdated. If you have further queries just ask them here. I take the opportunity to offer you our Conveyance Service. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Nik Says:

    Hello there. i and my wife own a spanish apartment, which is in both in our names, joint owners. i wish to transfer the property (my share in the ownership, of 50%) to my wife. Ive been told that to do this, it will cost in the region of 10,000 EUR. The property is worth around 650,000 EUR. I just find it hard to believe the costs of 10,000 EUR to simply transfer the name/ownership. Please advise. Many thanks
  • confused scot Says:

    hi My dad is a resisdent in spain and has sadly passed away his estate is too be shared with my sister also in scotland and my brother who lives in spain what taxes will we have to pay
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Nik, It sounds about right. If we are talking of a contentious dissolution of joint property ownership it would be at least €10,000 as it involves litigation fees. In reality it will probabably be closer to €15,000. If we are talking of a friendly dissolution of joined ownership for a property worth 650k the expenses and fees should be in the region of €10,000, yes. Only Stamp Duty (AJD) is 1% on the full value of the property which in your case amounts to €6,500. To this you must add lawyer's, notary's and land registry fees which can easily account for a further €3,500 making a total of €10,000 in expenses and fees. If you think 1% Stamp Duty levied on the €650,000 is expensive just think you are waiving Transfer tax at 7%. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear confused Scot, You as appointed beneficiary would have to pay Spanish Inheritance tax and Plusvalía on the Spanish estate. This is not the right thread to make this question. Thre are other threads with specific articles on the matter: Spanish Inheritance Tax: How much is it? - 1st February 2000 Spanish Inheritance Tax: Advantages of Making a Will in Spain - 3rd September 2009 Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Mike Says:

    I am trying to get my name and my brothers name added to an apartment my father owns in spain. I see the above post by Nik, but the attorney I spoke to said 10,00 plus transfer tax. Is that possible? Seems outrageous. All we are doing is adding two names to the title
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Mike, Your have been adviced correctly. This thread is for a Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership. This procedure requires you already own a share of the property. You only pay 1% Stamp Duty on the value of the whole property. In yours and your brothers case you don't own a share of your father's property therefor you have to pay 7% Transfer tax plus all the associated expenses (Lawyer's fees, Notary and Land Registry fees). You simply do not qualify for a Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership, you have to buy the property outright. Let me know if we can assist you on your matter. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • liz and Jean Says:

    i own 50% of a property in spain and co owner is selling his 50% , both have our own deeds as no mortgage . Does he have to have my signature for when he sells his share or can he just sell to anyone he wishes even if i dont agree to it , thank you Liz and Jean
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Sir or Madam, He is able to sell his 50% to whomever he pleases following Art 399 of the Spanish Civil Code. He does not need your permission nor your signature. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Unregistered Says:

    Hi I could potentially own a house in spain it is old and ruined but am hoping to rebuild as the structure is good it was my grandmothers who has passed away, it belongs to my Mum her two brothers and her sister. 3 parties involved have said I can have their share and I am waiting to hear from the 4th party. How do I change the house to my name if and when they agree. Please can someone help Clare
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Madam, As per the article that starts off this thread all you have to do is sign a deed of Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership. You will only pay 1% Stamp Duty on the full property value instead of 7% transfer tax. You will need to hire a Spanish lawyer to assist you on this matter. Please contact us if you are interested. We charge 1% of the value of the property plus VAT, subject to a minimum legal fee of €1,300 plus VAT. Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership A Deed of Dissolution of Joint Ownership allows joint owners to re-arrange their share on any property in a tax-efficient manner as it enables the outgoing joint owner to transfer his share to the existing joint owner legally avoiding the extreme 7% Transfer Tax plus the complications of having to allow the buyer to make a retention on the value of the share transferred for Capital Gains Tax which is only recoverable many months after the deeds are signed. This procedure is useful for: Couples owning property in joint names whose relationship has come to an end (separation, divorce, etc.) Beneficiaries of an inheritance who have effectively inherited a share in a property may decide to transfer it to another joint-owner. Friends who are joint-owners of property may simply opt out for unspecified reasons. The service includes 1. Make preparations at the Notary Public for completion of the dissolution of the joint property ownership or any further preparations required relating to the purchase such as preparation of powers of attorney for individuals abroad (duly legalised and translated) which give authority to a physical person/s to act on behalf of the buyers. 2. Assist in the completion process and ensure title deeds are properly registered in the appropriate local Land Registry, and that the property is free from all charges and encumbrances, as well as payment of the relevant taxes associated with the purchase. 3. If the property is Subject to a Mortgage, we assist in discharging the outgoing joint owner, who obviously will not be willing to continue guaranteeing the loan. At this point we can aslo help negotiating a new mortgage at a lower cost. This process can be arranged in a few days without any need for you to come over to Spain by means of granting us a specific Power of Attorney. We will undertake to make the necessary preparations, sign the Deed and register the new ownership with the Land Registry. ---------- * With a minimum of €1,300. * Our Fees do not include VAT (Currently at 16%) Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Elin Says:

    Hello, I co own a property with a friend of mine who has just sadly died. We had a Spanish will so hopefull the house is covered. We had a joint bank account which paid the bills - will that account revert to my name as it would in England ? He has a wife and she iis looking at the account to see if she can get the money - there is very little in it and it pays the bills so I need to keep it.
  • Johanna Says:

    If someone owned property in Spain and left the country without paying outstanding taxes etc & simply disappeared. If you know where they are is there a way of reporting them?
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    You can report them to the Tax office...
  • Johanna Says:

    Can you supply the details and I will. Thanks
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Here you go: https://www.agenciatributaria.gob.es/AEAT.sede/Inicio/_otros_/_Direcciones_y_telefonos_/_Direcciones_y_telefonos_.shtml
  • Charlie L Says:

    My husband and I bought a villa in 2005 as residents, since we were living and working there. In October 2009 I left him in Spain and returned to the UK and I am once again resident here. As part of the divorce settlement we will have to sell the house in Spain, possibly with me getting a greater than 50% share of the proceeds in lieu of maintenace payments for our children. What is the most cost effective way to do this? Is it better to transfer ownership then sell, or sell jointly? can you please advise. the villa is worth approx €525,000, there is outstanding mortgage of approx €250,000 and we bought it for €450,000. Thank you
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Madam, It is more efficient to sell jointly and you receiving the full sale proceeds less expenses and taxes rather than first transferring ownership of 50% (following what's known as a Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership) and then selling the property. As you happen to mention that you are selling your property in Spain, I take the opportunity to offer you our legal services. Our legal fees for our conveyance service are 0,75% of the value of the property with a minimum legal fee of €1,300 plus VAT. Our Property Conveyance Service for the sale of your property includes the following: Conveyance for property Sale Conveyance full package 1. Liaise and agree with the purchaser/s and/or lawyers in respect of terms and conditions of the sale, ensuring compliance with current laws. 2. Providing a free escrow account service where deposits will be held safely. 3. Make preparations at the Notary Public for completion of the purchase or any further preparations required relating to the sale such as preparation of Powers of Attorney for individuals abroad (duly legalised and translated) which give authority to a physical person/s to act on behalf of the vendors. 4.- Assist in filing and paying all associated sale's expenses and taxes. 5.- Confirm and obtain copy of the 3% retention withheld by the Notary Public at completion on behalf of the Spanish Tax Office on account of your Capital Gains Tax liability should you be a non-resident vendor. Should you be interested in hiring us please contact me. We act nationwide. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • ken dean Says:

    my father and mother own a villa in spain how much would it cost for me to have my name put on the deeds the property is valued at 250.00 euros and how do we go about it
  • ken d Says:

    or could thay sell it to me
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Sir, They would have to sell it to you, yes. Gifting it to you is normally not an option as Gift tax is applied which follows the same sliding scale as Inheritance tax but with none of its allowances. There are however some regions in Spain which are lenient on gifting property over to children. A Dissolution of Joint Property Ownership cannot be followed in your case, as you are not a joint owner along with your parents. The expenses on selling the property to you would be more or less 10% of the value of the property. If you want an accurate breakdown of fees and associated expenses I would need you to contact us to supply us with more details. Yours sincerely, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • petra meken Says:

    I am a joint owner (name on deeds and mortgage) of an apartment in spain. We are not resident in Spain. My partner and I have now separated and he has changed the locks on the property. He refuses to give me a key. Can he do this?
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Madam, No he cannot do this, it is unlawful. I strongly advise you contact us on your matter to find a solution. Yours sincerely,
  • petra meken Says:

    Re: post about changing the locks. I forgot to mention that he says I am not entitled to the property any more as I am not paying towards the mortgage. Could he have a case in this respect?
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Madam, Regardless if you are contributing or not to the mortgage repayments he cannot change the locks and lock you out. You are still entitled to half the sales proceeds (less your contributions) and being a joint owner you can enter the property whenever you want without restrictions. Yours faithfully, Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • tojo Says:

    In 2008 I bought a property(1) and lands(30 parcels) with 3 other people in Spain, we have no mortgage or such, each of us owns 25% on Title Deeds, 2 of the other owners, would like to buy me out, the 3rd is none cooperative. Can the other two owners still buy me out, without the 3rd owner being involve or does it require the non-cooperative owners signature. I am resident in UK
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Sir or Madam, It does not require nor the signature, nor the approval of the 3rd owner for you to sell on your 25%. Yours faithfully,
  • smithy Says:

    we jointly own a spanish property with friends. They want to sell their share which we are happy for them to do We have offered to buy but they have refused to accept our offer as they consider it is not enough money We can't afford any more. Can they force us to sell and if they can how? Who would be liable for the cost of this
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Smithy Yes they can force you to sell the whole property as you are all joint owners ex Art 404 of the Spanish Civil Code et ss. They can however sell their share only without forcing you to sell yours if they choose to. Another matter being is if anyone would be interested in buying only a share and not the whole property from them. Yours sincerely Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • smithy Says:

    do they have to go to court to force us to sell and who would be liable for the cost of this
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Yes they have to take you to court to force you selling. Expenses are paid up front and the judge will later on decide to whom he may award the the legal fees (if he does, which is not certain).
  • James Says:

    My partner and I (and child) are about to buy a property and we would like to know who would own the property (in Spain) if we were to split up in the future. We are not married and want things to be simple if we split up in the future; thus would it be easier if the property is put in my name alone and what is the best way for the named owner to leave the property to our child. Thanks in advance, James
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Hi James I take for granted you hold British citizenship, if it is not the case then please correct me. The property would only be yours despite your partner paying 50%, 100% or whatever amount towards it. He who appears lodged as the registered tiltle holder at the Land Regisrty is the sole owner. Sincerely Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • alex Says:

    Hi if 2 married people buy house in spain 1 dies no wils made any-where who owns house.
  • Lawbird Lawyer Says:

    Dear Alex It depends. There's no straight answer. Inheritance is a complex issue. If there are no Wills Intestacy rules would apply, in this case those of the deceased's person. The applicable rules are governed by the national laws of the person who passed away. So for example if the person was English, it would be the Intestacy laws of England & Wales. We cannot provide legal advise on foreign laws. A Certificate of Law may be required (Certificado de Ley) to clarify what the specific national laws of the deceased rule on. You may want to read our article on the matter: Applicable Inheritance Law to Estate Located in Spain - 16th April 2004 Sincerely Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
  • Mrs J Says:

    I bought an apartment with my partner 2 years ago. I paid for the apartment in full and pay all the bills. I did however put his name on the deeds as I wanted him to be able to use it in the event of my death. We have now separated and I would like to sell the apartment. Is he entitled to half the procedes even though I paid for the apartment in full?
  • Vikash Says:

    I have a question. My grandmother recently split up with her partner. She has documents signed (& I presume acceptable under UK laws) which state that her former partner has handed the property over to her. She has contacted her Lawyer in Spain who has advised this document is not sufficient. My grandmother's ex-partner is not contactable. Is there any way around this?
  • aflores Says:

    Vikash, this document is fully valid, why not? All that is needed is that your grand-mother´s ex-partner´s signature can be verified and authenticated by the Courts and once this is done, provided that the document is clear in the intention it carries, it can be enforced through judicial procedures. If this person is not contactable then you may have problems to pursue the legal action as he will have to be summoned to Court through Spanish Courts that, in turn, will contact UK Courts. The process is slow but it needs to be pursued if you wish to get a result.
  • Unregistered Says:

    I have a friend who owns a property and wishes to transfer the title to his 6 children. Is this something that can be done from UK nor not and will it attract the donation tax? What other fees does he need to know about?
  • aflores Says:

    This will have to necessarily be transferred via gift as the children, unless it can be proven that had the money to buy the property, will be buying without money, and this in Spanish law is not a sale but a donation, as you properly point out. Other applicable fees will be notary fees, land registry and careful, capital gains tax may also arise!
  • Arnold Says:

    my wife and I are divorcing in the UK, we co own a property in Northern Spain, I will take on full ownership, how much will it cost?
  • aflores Says:

    Hello Arnold, The cost you need to budget for is made up of the following: Stamp Duty: 1% of the value of the property Notary fees: 600-1200 Euros, depending on the value Land registry fees: 500-900 Euros, depending on value Legal fees: subject to the practice´s fees, but around 0.5% of the property value or 1.400 Euros, whichever the maximum (plus VAT). Additionally, you may have cost of power of attorney should you hire a law practice to deal with the case but this will not be more than 80 Euros.
  • Arnold Says:

    Hi Aflores what sort of time scales are involved?
  • mark Says:

    I own a casa in tenerife which is solely in my name .Last year i got married and would like to pass 50% of the house to her. what would be the best way economically to do this
  • aflores Says:

    Mark, You can gift it, as a sale would not be permissible if no money is changing hands, apart from the fact that it could cost more money to actually do a sale than gift it. I would need to know the value of the 50% of the property.
  • mark Says:

    I paid 550 thousand euro for the house 5 years ago , but it shows on the escritura 310 thousand. there is no morgage on the house
  • mark Says:

    The Castastral value is 199 thousand euro
  • aflores Says:

    Mark, if we take that the value of what you inherit is say 150.000 Euros, you are looking at paying around 20.000 Euros in tax. I have not done precise calculations using the catastral value and the multiplicand applied by the Regional Governments, so a more accurate calculation may throw a different figure.
  • Alba Maria Says:

    Hello, I recently divorced and still have a property in joint ownership (deeds and mortgage) with my ex-husband where I reside with my children. He would like to put the property in my name only and understands at present the bank would not agree to put the mortgage in just my name because of my income although I currently pay all the bills. Is it necessary to inform the bank if we are going to make a dissolution of joint ownership? I am a British resident in Spain.
  • lawbird Says:

    Dear Alba, I am afraid that if your bank does not agree to make any changes in the mortgage, he can still transfer the ownership of his share in the property BUT the liability under the mortgage will remain the same. This means that you would become the sole registered proprietor of the appartment but the bank can go against both mortgagors and against the property itself should there be a default. Regards,
  • Adam Payne Says:

    Apologies if this is slightly off topic I own a property with my wife in spain which currently does not have a mortgage. I purchased with loans taken out in the UK as at the time the property could not be mortgaged. The aim was to repay the loans with a mortgage at a later date. I am now having a problem securing an 'equity release' mortgage due to the financial climate. Is it possible to raise a mortgage by essentially buying out my wifes half of the house? could I go via the disolution route or would I be liable for full 7% transfer tax?
  • wozzie Says:

    My question is: if someone transfers ownership of an apartment, does anyone have to pay 3% retention tax? No money has been exchanged.
  • ifv Says:

    Hello Wozzie I assume you are enquiring about whether 3% has to be withheld when you buy a co-owner out. The answer is not straightforward. Some notaries do request that 3% is withheld, but others don't. The notaries we use will witness the transfer without forcing this 3% retention. Please note that the taxman always expects money to change hands. Otherwise, this can be considered a donation and attract hefty tax.
  • harry Says:

    my wife and I are separated, i reside in spain and she in england, however our property in spain is jointly owned. She has not paid any money towards the mortgage, community charges, property tax etc. Should she be paying towards this even though she is not residing in spain. She is considering buying my share of the house could you please advise
  • Patricia Says:

    Dear Harry, Your wife should be paying her half of the expenses of the house, regardless of her residence status in Spain, as she a co-owner; mainly if you are both married according to the British Law, that is separate estate. If you finally decided to sell the property to a third party, she would have the right to keep half of the profit if there was any after the tax payments and should there be no mortgage. You would be in a position to retain the unpaid amounts and expenses provided you had documented proof of it and that you had started to leave evidence at the Notary office of those non-payments. If she is willing to buy your share through a pruchase process this will sort out the situation. Please feel free to request more information through our website´s contact form and we will be able to advice you further. Yours faithfully,
  • petra16 Says:

    Hi, I am co-owner of an apartment in Spain with my ex-partner. My ex-partner has changed the locks so I cannot gain access at all. Can he do this? We are not resident in spain. We are not married. My name is on the deeds and the mortgage. I have obtained a copy of the deeds from my bank to prove ownership and intend to instruct a locksmith to change the locks. I will of course give my ex-partner a key when this has been done. Am I within my rights to do this? Also, since we have split up, I have not been able to contribute to the mortgage. Does this make any difference. Any help would be appreciated. Many thanks
  • Raymond Says:

    I have fifty percent ownership of a finca. I want to sell by court auction as I am estranged from my partner and she refuses to come to an agreement. If I take this action do I need to pay fees upfront and how long will selling the property by auction will take?
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Raymond, I understand that you wish to dissolve the jointly owned property and that your ex-partner is not collaborating, so unfortunately your only option is to initiate a court action to agree on the property dissolution and sell the property in public auction of the whole asset. Yes, you will have to make payment of the court fees in advance though if the judge rules completely in your favour, it will be in all probability that your expartner is obliged to pay these costs as it was her non collaboration and refusal to dissolve the ownership in an amiccable way what led to the court case. If she fails to make payment of these costs, you will have the right to claim the amount from her half obtained after the auction. It is very difficut to ascertain the time the process can take until the auction. Each Court works at different levels of efficiency; also, their workload can also vary form one court to another. Once the judge decides to dissolve the joint ownership, the following steps of the case will depend on her collaboration to sell the property in agreement with you. If she fails to collaborate in this case, you will then be forced to sell in judicial auction, which will obviously result in additional expenses and time. According to our experience, these cases can take between 6 and 8 months before the sentencing, and if the process continues until the judicial auction, you could well add another 6 months. Regards,
  • Patricia Says:

    Hi, I am co-owner of an apartment in Spain with my ex-partner. My ex-partner has changed the locks so I cannot gain access at all. Can he do this? We are not resident in spain. We are not married. My name is on the deeds and the mortgage. I have obtained a copy of the deeds from my bank to prove ownership and intend to instruct a locksmith to change the locks. I will of course give my ex-partner a key when this has been done. Am I within my rights to do this? Also, since we have split up, I have not been able to contribute to the mortgage. Does this make any difference. Any help would be appreciated. Many thanks Hello Petra16, The best thing to do is to ask him in writing ( fax or email) that he gives you a copy of the new keys. If he fails to hand them over after a while, and once you confirm that he currently lives in the house, you can take the copies of whatever is in writing asking him to hand the keys and a copy of the title deeds indicating ownership of the property and visit the property with the police so they can write a report that you are unable to enter your property as the co-owner has changed the lock. Then you will finally obtain the copy of the keys or at least a report in your favor if your ex-partner starts to be difficult. If he does not live in the property in a permanent basis, you will have to wait until he is actually in the property to do what I have just explained above. We do not advice that you change th lock without prior consent as you would be committing the same mistake as him, that is, deny access to the property to the other co-owner. The non-payment of the mortgage fees does not justify the change of locks. Please note that your ex-partner can claim at any moment these unpaid bills, provided he has already been paying your part of the mortgage during this time. Regards,
  • Classickarlos Says:

    Hi, I am co owner of a property in Spain and have been separated from my partner (co owner) for over four years, she has been very difficult during this time. When we separated I gave her the house in the UK (paid for in cash by me) and she agreed that the Spanish property (also paid for in cash by me) would be mine. After signing the UK house to her she sold it and then became difficult and refused to sort out the property in Spain, she has recently started sending letters saying she wants it to be sold (she has spent all the money from the sale of the UK property!). Since separating I have paid all the bills, water, electricity, community etc.. and had no money from her at all. We are both non resident in Spain and we were not married. Is my ex still liable for half of these bills? can I claim this from her? I still want the property in Spain to be transferred to my sole ownership. I understand from reading previous post that I would be liable for paying all the cost incurred in the transfer and am willing to do this, however I do not want to pay my ex any money but rather assume the amount she owes me (if this is the case) as being payment for her share. Would this be possible?
  • Jean Says:

    Dear Sir/Madam, I have residencia and live in Spain. I am in the process of divorcing my husband who has a Spanish NIE but does not hold Spanish residencia and lives in the UK. I have signed over my half of our UK house to him and he has signed over his half of our Spanish house to me. (agreed divorce settlement).The houses are of the same value. I am in the process of putting the escrtura into the registry office. I have signed the d j p o and know about the notary, 1%, registration and abogado fees. Do i have to pay the plus valia and cambio nombre padron de recaudacion or any other fees as money has not changed hands only property? For example capital gains tax. Thank you.
  • Raymond Says:

    I own a Joint property and because i cannot come to any sensible agreement with the other owner I am warming to the idea of a sell by court auction. What I would like to know is what upfront fees would I be looking at? I am on a fixed income and reqally do need to know what cash I need to find to begin the process.
  • sarah Says:

    Myself and my ex husband have a mortgage on a property in spain, neither of us want to buy the other out and the property has little if any equity. I have been sending monthly money to spain to pay the mortgage and he has been giving me his half each month however recently he has bounced cheques, been threatening to claim bankruptcy and been paying his half to me later than it is due. Is there any way that I can legally organise to be responsible for my half of the mortgage as it worries me that I will be held responsible if he fails to pay his half. And if this is possible how do i go about it. By the way the property has been up for sale for approx 3 yrs but has had very little interest. many thanks Sarah
  • Colin Says:

    My partner claims I have paid noting towards our property and is seeing a solicitor to have my name removed from the deeds. Can she do this? Also can she through the courts reduce my share by claiming I have made no contribution to the purchases price. I should add we have been living in the property for five years and only now she is making this claim.
  • Smithy Says:

    My partner refuses to let me have a copy of the deeds of a jointly owned property. It is rustic land and I don't know the parcella number. Is there any way I can find out?
  • Patricia Says:

    My partner claims I have paid noting towards our property and is seeing a solicitor to have my name removed from the deeds. Can she do this? Also can she through the courts reduce my share by claiming I have made no contribution to the purchases price. I should add we have been living in the property for five years and only now she is making this claim. Hello Colin, If you have not been paying your part of the property, but it is jointly owned, you are in debt with your partner. If your partner takes you to court, her solicitor will prove that you have not made any payment towards the property therefore all the expenses have been paid by her, so there is a debt claim against you. At court, a judge will determine what is the owed amount that you will need to pay, and if unable, your partner will have a credit against you. If the property was sold, your corresponding amount would be less as the owed moneys would be deducted from it. The best option is to start a dissolution of joint property ownership process, though this will not avoid you having to pay the corresponding amount to your partner, which will be determined by a judge. Regards,
  • Gerry Herriot Says:

    Can dissolution apply to the transfer of 1/3 ownership. In other words if there are three joint owners on the title deeds can one share be transferred to the others making them 50/50 owners.
  • Mr moore Says:

    I am separating from my wife and the house is in her name only as she is a citizen of spain, I am a resident. Do I have claim to half the house, this was bought with joint funds whilst married. she has now told me that I cannot enter the house alone. All my belongings are still in the house. What rights do I have ?
  • Karen Says:

    e my parents brought a property in spain and put myself sister and brother on the deeds so we were lead to believe this was in 2002 I have asked for a copy of the deeds and have been told that we are not on them so why have we been pay tax each year (which he pays for) who do I go to about proving that my name is or is not on the deeds as I do not want my name on something I do not know about
  • Blighty Says:

    I am ever so concerned. My partner is taking me to court over a finca we jointly own. I live on the finca but it has no official mailing address. Sometimes I am in the UK How will I be notified of the hearing? I am defending myself as i am living on my savings but her solicitor won't even oblidge me with letting me know of a hearing date. I would have thought as I am defending myself he would have a duty to communicate with me but it seems not. How can I ensure I know in advance of a pending court case? I am just so worried it will go ahead and I won't even know about it or the result. Hardly justice. Please help.
  • Patricia Says:

    e my parents brought a property in spain and put myself sister and brother on the deeds so we were lead to believe this was in 2002 I have asked for a copy of the deeds and have been told that we are not on them so why have we been pay tax each year (which he pays for) who do I go to about proving that my name is or is not on the deeds as I do not want my name on something I do not know about Hello Karen, The quickest and safest way to find out if you are a registered owner of that property is by requesting a report from the Land Registry. The search can be made by entering your name and/or property details. We offer that service at Lawbird, so please use our website contact form to get more information about the service and our fees. You can also click on this link to learn about the process:http://www.lawbird.com/services/view/13/Land-Registry-Search---Search-by-Owner Best Regards,
  • Michael Says:

    My partner has hired a solicitor to claim back my 50% share of our property because she claims I have paid noting towards it. Her solicitor claims he can claim back my half of the property. Looking at past comments I given to understand he or the courts cannot remove my name from the escritura, is this true? I may need a solicitor soon do you cover all of Spain?
  • Patricia Says:

    My partner has hired a solicitor to claim back my 50% share of our property because she claims I have paid noting towards it. Her solicitor claims he can claim back my half of the property. Looking at past comments I given to understand he or the courts cannot remove my name from the escritura, is this true? I may need a solicitor soon do you cover all of Spain? Hello Michael, You can read a reply to a similar post, dated on the 7th of September, that may answer your question: http://belegal.com/forums/showthread.php?59-Dissolution-of-Joint-Property-Ownership-in-Spain&p=13020&viewfull=1#post13020 We do offer dissolution of joint property services in the whole Spanish territory, so please feel free to send us your enquiry through our website´s contact form if you wish. Please click on this link to learn about the process: http://www.lawbird.com/services/view/25/Dissolution-of-Joint-Property-Ownership Regards,
  • lee Says:

    i have a joint property in spain with my ex girlfriend , both our names are on the mortgage and on the deeds , however she bought me out 7 years ago in cash , i was basically paid what i put in and over the years the property went up in value , her part of the deal was to pay off the mortgage in full and then i would sign the property over to her , now the property is only just worth what the mortgage is and she is defaulting on the payments , can i force the sale of the property in order for the bank to get their money back , and where would that leave me with regards to tax on the cash she paid my 7 years ago ?? thanks Lee
  • Patricia Says:

    I am separating from my wife and the house is in her name only as she is a citizen of spain, I am a resident. Do I have claim to half the house, this was bought with joint funds whilst married. she has now told me that I cannot enter the house alone. All my belongings are still in the house. What rights do I have ? Dear Mr. Moore, She is the legal owner as she is the only one appearing on the deeds. After the divorce, if married in spouses joint property ( regime by default in Spanish marriages ), the assets will be liquidated according to that. If the house is the conjugal address, you are allowed to enter the property though preferably once she has been informed of your decision to enter the property to gather your things, arranging a date and time and that there are witnesses of your visit, so there are no misunderstandings nor she can claim that you took belongings without her consent. Regards,
  • Mary F Says:

    I bought a house with my partner in 2003 - joint purchase both names on deeds - we split up and he gave me my share of money. Now we are going for a dissolution of joint property ownership as we both want my name of the deeds. He says all I have to do is say that I have already received all the money. He says he will pay texes. Will we not be asked to prove I have had my money and is it all legal.
  • Babs Bell Says:

    HI, my husband and I have 2 houses in Spain, in both our names and both houses have no mortgage. We have divorced in the UK and in the divorce it states he has one house and I have the other. How do we now remove my name from his house and his name from my house and what would be the costs? We are not resident in Spain. Finally, I looked into this before and was told it would be very expensive, this is why we covered the issue in our English divorce settlement.
  • Joanne Says:

    we have 2 properties in spain with mortgages with cam bank. Unknown to us at the time cam bank have secured the mortgage on our apartment jointly on our house. We wish to sell the flat now but its value has considerably dropped which the bank are saying means that the shortfall left on thew mortgage will go onto the house, is there anyway we can get these seperated apparently they are both secured on the escatura for the house ??
  • aflores Says:

    I bought a house with my partner in 2003 - joint purchase both names on deeds - we split up and he gave me my share of money. Now we are going for a dissolution of joint property ownership as we both want my name of the deeds. He says all I have to do is say that I have already received all the money. He says he will pay texes. Will we not be asked to prove I have had my money and is it all legal. Your partner is indeed right, there is no need to prove that the sums have been paid, just mention that they have.
  • aflores Says:

    HI, my husband and I have 2 houses in Spain, in both our names and both houses have no mortgage. We have divorced in the UK and in the divorce it states he has one house and I have the other. How do we now remove my name from his house and his name from my house and what would be the costs? We are not resident in Spain. Finally, I looked into this before and was told it would be very expensive, this is why we covered the issue in our English divorce settlement. Babs, this is not expensive at all, compared to what you would be expected to pay if you were to sell it. You are expected to pay 1% Stamp Duty, plus Notary and land registry fees, and legal fees if you choose to employ a lawyer (1,200 Euros plus VAT is generally acceptable).
  • aflores Says:

    Joanne, without knowing what the escritura says, we cannot give you further advice. I have however never heard such a thing although, in a way, both loans are tied up as you are personally liable for their repayment. The apartment value can anyhow cause you a problem if you are selling at a loss, given that you owe more money to CAM that what you would get for it. I would suggest, if you wish to get rid of it, to try to give it back to the bank arguing that you will pay on the other one.
  • S Gomez Says:

    My mother and father who are American citizens and married in New York own an apartment in Spain. My Father has passed away. Both their names appear on the deed and there is no will. My mother wishes to sell the property. Is the property able to sell as is or does some modifications need to be done to the deed prior to selling the home?
  • aflores Says:

    My mother and father who are American citizens and married in New York own an apartment in Spain. My Father has passed away. Both their names appear on the deed and there is no will. My mother wishes to sell the property. Is the property able to sell as is or does some modifications need to be done to the deed prior to selling the home? Hello S Gomez, My condolences to your mother and you. For your mother to be able to sell the property your Dad's half will have to be transferred to a designated person, which in the abscence of a will requires the acceptance of the inheritance by whoever is, according to your late Dad's laws (U.S. I presume) entitled to be the heir in the event of a person dying intestate. Once this is established then you will have to go through the motions of acceptance of the estate and adjudication of the asset on whoever is entitled to receive it, and with this document, you can register the change with the Spanish land registry. This process can be done in the US, or in Spain (the former should prove easier). Should you require assistance please advise.
  • S Gomez Says:

    AFlores, thank you for your response. I would agree that as my mother is in the U.S., it would prove easier to do that process from here. What type of lawyer in the U.S. would be able to do that type of work? I have spoken with attorneys here in the U.S. who do probate work, but they are unfamiliar with the processes in Spain.
  • Enid Says:

    Please advise if I can sell my property in Spain without my husbands permission. The property contract is totally in my name and totally paid for by me. But on the contract he signed it with my signature.
  • Enid Says:

    Clarifying my above post the last sentence should read ''But on the Contract he signed it TOGETHER with my signature''.
  • clari Says:

    we bought a home in spain as residents and my son was put on the mortgage to give it more years he has paid no money at all neither deposit or monthly as this money comes from the bank where only mine and my partners nominas are paid, he now has moved out after an argument and says the house is as much his as ours we are frightened he can enter at any time because of this and he is violent and abusive what do you advise and what are our legal rights
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Clari, If your son also appears in the house deeds, and is therefore an owner, he will certainly have rights over the property. You mention that he is on the mortgage deeds, though do not confirm if he also appears in the property deeds. Usually, the person who appears in the mortgage deeds also appear in the property title deeds. If he only appears in the mortgage deeds, your partner and you are the legal owners of the house, leaving your son in a weak position. I would need to check the deeds to advice further, so please do not hesitate to continue the communications by e-mail through our contact form if you wish. Regards,
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Enid, You will have to check the property deeds and find out who is the registered owner of the property. If you are both owners, the sale will have to be agreed by you both. If one of you do not agree to sell, to a third party or to the co-owner who wants to keep the property, the other co-owner can force a sale by court order to dissolve the joint ownership. However, even if you were the registered owner but appeared on the deeds as married, being the dwelling the family home, your husband´s consent would be required to sell. Best Regards,
  • mr Moore Says:

    For the attention of Patrica, you kindly answered my questions below, however I have heard that my wife can divorce me without my consent and take the house, is this correct? Patricia Says: Fri, Oct 14th 2011, 10:37 I am separating from my wife and the house is in her name only as she is a citizen of spain, I am a resident. Do I have claim to half the house, this was bought with joint funds whilst married. she has now told me that I cannot enter the house alone. All my belongings are still in the house. What rights do I have ? Dear Mr. Moore, She is the legal owner as she is the only one appearing on the deeds. After the divorce, if married in spouses joint property ( regime by default in Spanish marriages ), the assets will be liquidated according to that. If the house is the conjugal address, you are allowed to enter the property though preferably once she has been informed of your decision to enter the property to gather your things, arranging a date and time and that there are witnesses of your visit, so there are no misunderstandings nor she can claim that you took belongings without her consent. Regards,
  • jodie Says:

    i have divorced from my husband in england. We had a joint property in spain, but the judges over here concluded that i should take over the home in england and buy him out.... which i did. He should be then left the spanish home, he now wants my name off the deeds of the house, hes telling me that i have to pay over 10 thousand pounds..... is this correct, is this my duty to pay. after all i bought my share of the house in england off him and therefore if he wants my name removing shouldnt this be up to him to pay? help needed please
  • Patricia Says:

    Dear Mr. Moore, It is certainly true that you wife can file for divorce without your agreement. If you are married according to the British system, where the estates are separate, and the house is registered in her name, she will be considered to be holding 100% ownership. In the event that the ruling system is the shared possession, you had children in common and she had higher earnings than you, as well as other variables, there could be different interpretations. You mention that the house was purchased with joint funds. In that case, when arranging the divorce settlement, you could claim the refund of the amounts that you paid to help pay your ex-partners´ house. I hope this informaiton has been helpful. Regards,
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Jo, The property ownership can only be dissolved through a sale of percentages, as dissolution only takes place when there are two owners and one wants to step out. Partial dissolutions do not exist, but percentage sales that the tax office will later claim. The costs involved are the 7% transfer tax, lawyer, Notary and Land Registry fees. We can assist in the process so please feel free to send us more information about the case through our website´s contact form. Regards,
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Jodie, The amount your ex-husband is claiming to transfer ownership of the house, seems to be the 3% CGT retention that needs to be paid at the tax office. You must pay this amount bearing in mind that this can be later refunded ( in full, or part of it ) depending on the results the tax declaration reveal. Most notaries we work with will not request that a retention on account CGT is made, when selling the property, to the vendor and we have never had any issues with the tax office. Of course, if you wish to select a Notary that thinks differently it is also possible. In any case, we recommend you to finalise the proceedings of the property transfer at the earliest as while you are on the deeds you still have the obligation to pay the 50% of the property expenses ( Council Tax, Income Tax, Community charges, etc ) Please feel free to communicate with us through our website´s contact form to find out what is your actual situation as we can assist throghout the process. Regards,
  • Ian Says:

    I own 25% of a villa in spain, along with three other family members who also own 25% each. I wish to sell my share but the others dont, what can I do?
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Ian, You can offer to sell you share to someone else, though we understand it is not easy, as not many people is interested in buying a share of a property without knowing the rest of the owners. Therefore, you can offer to sell them your share, or take them to court so a Judge dissolves the ownership, though of course this is the least conveneint option due to the loss of income involved. Best Regards,
  • Charlie Wagg Says:

    Hi I have just completed an inheritance claim on a spanish property left to me as a 25% value. The property has no mortgage attached and I wish to buy out a 50% value from two others giving me 75% ownership. Can I get a mortgage to fund this?...Thanks PS the final 25% owner is in agreement to this.
  • Mr moore Says:

    Dear Patrica, you have kindly given me some useful info previously. My house is in my wifes name and we have now signed agreeement with lawyer that she gets 60% and I get 40% I have also signed divorce papers. I have asked my wife for my personal effects from the house and she refuses to give them to me until the house is sold. She is going to live in the USA in March and will put the sale of the house in the hands of her lawyer. What can i do to get my personal effects. Does she have a right to refuse them to me? Kind regards
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Mr. Mooore, Your wife certainly has a right to request that you do not enter the house after selling it or unless she is there, as she is a property owner as yet. The usual procedure in these cases, if there is no possibility to get to an agreement as the relationship between the ex-partners is not a good one, is that you send her a registered letter offering her two options so you can recover your belongings: asking her ( prior notice ) that she is so kind as to let you enter the property to gather your personal effects (however, please be advised that she can still refuse to do it, as the registered letter is a formality that does not imply any obligation ). The second option is to send her your current address details so she can send you your belongings. If she still refuses to take any of the options ( specially the second one ), you can report her for unlawful appropriation, though this can have its inconveniences, as you would have to prove your belongings were still kept in the property at the time and this can only be proven by notarial deeds, otherwise she can say there is nothing in belonging to you ( if ,for instance, she had previously got rid of it ). The best option, of course, is to have a cordial relationship and agree with her that she lets you in. Regards,
  • aks Says:

    I am divorcing my husband and moving back to the UK with our 3 yr old son. The house and mortgage is in both of our names. My husband paid the deposit (100,000euros) He has spoken to a lawyer today and has informed me as I am leaving for the UK, I am giving up all my rights to the house and I'm entitled to nothing- No money from the sale of the house, no maintainance for our son, but he will get at least 50 days per year access to our son. I cannot speak to a lawyer till 3 days time and I'm starting to worry.. is he correct or trying to panic me? I will be going back to the Uk with no home, no money and our son.. can you please tell me what are my rights?
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Aks, I recommend you to seek legal assistance and get to an amicable divorce settlement with your husband, that will indicate how to settle the jointly owned properties and your child' support, as well as the days your husband will be able to visit your son. In Spain, it is an agreement voluntarily signed by both parties called Convenio Regulador. You can process the settlement in Spain and it will be respected in the UK, where a similar process can have a significant higher cost. This is a type of agreement that has to be outlined by a mutual agreement that both parties freely choose to do to put things in place after a separation. Please feel free to email me on Patricia at Lawbird.com if you wish to know more about the process and the legal fees you can expect to pay, covering both parties, as being is a mutual agreement, the same solicitor could represent you. Regards,
  • karen1969 Says:

    Hi, I am co-owner of an apartment in Spain with my ex-partner. My ex-partner has changed the locks so I cannot gain access at all. Can he do this? We are not resident in spain. We are not married. My name is on the deeds and the mortgage. I have obtained a copy of the deeds from my bank to prove ownership and intend to instruct a locksmith to change the locks. I will of course give my ex-partner a key when this has been done. Am I within my rights to do this? Also, since we have split up, I have not been able to contribute to the mortgage. Does this make any difference. Any help would be appreciated. Many thanks hi have you had any luck with this ?? i am now in exactly the same boat . my ex has changed the locks also and i'm on deeds and mortgage . thanks karen
  • David William Says:

    I have a 25% share of a costa brava villa my my ex and her parents. I want out but they are reluctant to sell. They do not want to buy me out. Is there any way I can force a sale or even sell my share to a third party?
  • Debbie Says:

    Hi, My Dad passed away in Spain in 2008. My dad & step mum had an apartment in joint names at the time of his death. We have never seen a copy of his will! My stepmother passed away recently, today we found out that in March 2011 she requested to her solicitor, that my Dads name was removed from the deeds. My question is, could she do this without us children (all my Dads) having seen his will? How long would this process take? can we request a copy of his will? thank you
  • kelly Says:

    My self and my sister own a property in spain, I know longer want my share 50/50 and have asked her to buy me out ,or sell. But she doesnt want to do either. what can I do ?
  • Marta Says:

    Hello Kelly, In view of the problem you are currently encountering, you are only left with the alternative of carrying out the liquidation of the property which you currently own with your sister, and of requesting the sale of it through the courts for its equal distribution. This is a slower and rather more expensive way than carrying it out with her consent but unfortunately is the only way if she refuses to agree on it.
  • Camelson Says:

    Very simple question: My ex wife has agreed to transfer her 50% of an apartment we jointly own in Spain, into my name. The property was bought for circa E260 and is now worth E150. What is the most economical way of achieving this transfer? Very simple question 2: If I was to add by brother inlaw's name to the title deeds (assuming the bank will allow me to), what are the associated costs?
  • KAREN HODGETTS Says:

    My husband and his brother in law have a joint mortgage in Spain.We owe 183,000 euro on the mortgage and have got a buyer interested in purchasing the property for 172,000 Euro fully furnished. They have asked if we will pay 10% towards the cost of their fees is this normal in Spanish law. ? Could you also give me a guide to how much money we are going to have to pay if the sale goes through with all the solicitors fees, tax and any other fees involved.
  • Patricia Says:

    Hi, My Dad passed away in Spain in 2008. My dad & step mum had an apartment in joint names at the time of his death. We have never seen a copy of his will! My stepmother passed away recently, today we found out that in March 2011 she requested to her solicitor, that my Dads name was removed from the deeds. My question is, could she do this without us children (all my Dads) having seen his will? How long would this process take? can we request a copy of his will? thank you Hello Debbie, Please accept my condolences for the loss. You can certainly request a copy of your father´s will in the Last will Registry, as you are a legitimate party. Once you know what the will establishes, you can contest it if you believe that it is against Law. A land Registry search will confirm if the house is registered only in your step mother´s name or still in joint names with you late father. Once you confirm this, different actions can be taken; contest the will to inherit your father´s half or start the Estate transfer to heirs´ process if the inheritance process has not taken place yet. We can assist either way as well as make the necessary searches for you, so please feel free to contact me on Patricia at Lawbird.com to get further information and discuss your case in detail, if you wish. Best Regards,
  • Colin Says:

    Hi, some friends jointly own a mortgage free property in Lanzarote. Recently the husband passed away and as an exucutor of his will I will be in charge of bringing his financial affairs to a close. My friends made wills in the UK and Spain leaving all assets to each other. What do I need to do to transfer the deeds into the widows name alone and will there be any tax due ? Total assets including the Lanzarote property are below Uk inheritance tax thresholds.
  • Sallie Says:

    I have a Consent Order from my divorce which gives me 50% of a piece of land in Spain. As no money is changing hands for sale or purchase which tax is applicable?
  • Mike Smith Says:

    Hi, My ex-wife and I own a property in the Alicante area. We have owned the property since April 2009 and separated in March 2010. We recently divorced and the only thing left to sort out is the house we jointly own. My ex-wife is currently residing in the house and has been there with her current partner since January 2012. The house has been 'for sale' for a couple of years now but it has not found a buyer. Can you advise me what options are available to me regarding the sale of the house? I would like my name off of the mortgage so that I may be in a position to buy a house in the UK. What sort of fees/costs would be applicable? Thanks in advance.
  • ana Says:

    My mother is aged and fragile and now lives with me in the UK. She has an apartment in Madrid and would like to trasfer it to me. Please advice how we can achieve this and what the cost and tax implications would be.
  • aflores Says:

    My mother is aged and fragile and now lives with me in the UK. She has an apartment in Madrid and would like to trasfer it to me. Please advice how we can achieve this and what the cost and tax implications would be. Hello Ana, you can either receive the property by means of a purchase sale agreement, which attracts transfer (and capital gains) taxes, or via a gift agreement. Both entail significant taxes, with a minimum of 10% in the first option and far more in the second option. A purchase sale however can be challenged where no price is paid, as the transaction would be legally flawed. A third option is to transfer the property to a company, of which you become the sole director and thus control it. At a later stage you may wish to transfer the shares, under certain tax conditions. This is the cheapest option, by far, to have control of the property.
  • Michael Says:

    Hi. My father owns a apartment In Los nietos , Murcia , Spain , he is getting old now and would like to give his apartment to my brother and I, the apartment is paid for, can we transfer the deeds? And what feed would be involved? Thanks
  • aflores Says:

    Hi. My father owns a apartment In Los nietos , Murcia , Spain , he is getting old now and would like to give his apartment to my brother and I, the apartment is paid for, can we transfer the deeds? And what feed would be involved? Thanks Michael, the property can be transferred but the transaction would be liable for Gift Tax (as well as CGT), which will depend on the value it has, as verified by the Tax Authority if they dont agree to the value you have allocated to it. It is possible to explore other less expensive avenues, such as for example gifting only the "use" of the property, or alternatively the bare ownership of it. If you wish to contact me directly you may do so by email.
  • Michael Says:

    Thanks for your reply, simpler apartments are for sale for around €100,000, but we don't feel that reflects the true selling price of the apartment which would be much lower, how much would the gift tax be if they valued the apartment at €100,000 , and would the tax be payable straight away or when the apartment is sold? Thanks so much, michael
  • aflores Says:

    Michael, you are looking at around 16% tax, which is payable within 30 days from acceptance of the gift. Source: http://www.juntadeandalucia.es/haciendayadministracionpublica/tributos/impuestos/cedidos/anexo650.htm#reducciones-mortis Thanks for your reply, simpler apartments are for sale for around €100,000, but we don't feel that reflects the true selling price of the apartment which would be much lower, how much would the gift tax be if they valued the apartment at €100,000 , and would the tax be payable straight away or when the apartment is sold? Thanks so much, michael
  • Michael Says:

    Affores, thanks for your reply, 16% tax is something we can't afford to pay, it's looking like we will have to let my dad sell the apartment instead of gifting a property that he's already paid for, 16% seems crazy, what is the Spanish government doing? Trying to squeeze out all the tourists and investors , I've got a headache!! Hanks for your help though,
  • GEORGE Says:

    grgmarquesx@yhoo.com Hello, I am selling my house here and the completion date is set fot SEPTEMBER.I have a bank account here with LLOYDS and one in the UK .I WOULD LIKE TO KNOW WHETHER ON REQUEST A NOTARY CAN TRANSFER THE MONEY TO EITHER BANK ELECTRONICALLY THUS SAVING THE TIME TO CLEAR A MONEY DRAFT.THANKING YOU
  • Nancy Says:

    My mother and father bought a property in Spain before they were divorced. The property is not listed in the divorce papers. We assume my mother's name is still on the registration, but are not sure. We are also not 100% of the address. He remarried. How do we find out the registration of the property, and what does my mother do before or after his death?
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Nancy, The best way to find out if your mother is still a registered title ownership holder, will be to make a Land Registry search that will indicate if there is any property in your mother´s name in Spain ( the search can be limited to provinces and regions, so the result is more accurate ). Once she finds out if she has any rights to the property, and in case she actually does, she can decide if she wants to arrange a dissolution of the joint ownership, either by selling the property and sharing the proceeds with your father or selling her share to your father ( always in agreement ) or just keep her share as it is. Depending on what she wishes to do, your last question would be answered. We offer the Land Registry Search at Lawbird, so please contact us if you are interested. Regards,
  • helpless Says:

    Over 8 years ago I sold a property i owned soley in the uk, and used the proceeds to put down a large deposit and purchase a house in spain. My partner was put on the mortgage but has not contributed for the most part to the mortgage payments. She has now moved out as we have split up, and her and her two children have moved elsewhere. It was agreed that I would stay on at the house as I want to continue living there. She has now threatened to go to the bank to take her name of the mortgage/deeds so I will not be able to have the mortgage on my own, and has also said she wants me out the house. She initially agreed on me giving her 50% of the profits of the house market value at present after mortgage, but she is no longer being amicable. Also although she voluntarily moved out, and returned the keys to me, and is renting somewhere else, she wants to remove me from the house immediately by whatever means necessary as she says it is a joint property. Can she do that? Also is she entitled to 50% of the profits?
  • Sinead Says:

    Hello, My 2 friends own a house in Spain with no mortgage. One of the friends doesn't want anything to do with it anymore and has agreed to give to me for a nominal 20K. Can they do a dissolution of ownership and get my name on the deeds as the same time for 50%? Thank you
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Sinead, The transaction you are suggesting would not be considered a dissolution of the joint ownership, as this takes place when two or more co-owners dissolve the ownership to re-distribute the shares among them. In this case, one of the co-owners is transferring/selling his/her share to a third party, so the operation is regarded as a transfer or sale of a share ( 50 % in this case ) of the property. Please note that even if you are buying that half for 20K, the applicable Transfer Tax will still be calculated using the fiscal value the property, so I recommend you to find this out to get an idea of the costs before going ahead. If you provide us with the cadastral value of the property, we can calculate the bare minimum you must declare on the transfer to avoid further Transfer Tax requests from the Taxman. Additionally, declaring anything under this value could also be regarded as a donation, and attract much higher tax rates Regards,
  • Marta Says:

    Over 8 years ago I sold a property i owned soley in the uk, and used the proceeds to put down a large deposit and purchase a house in spain. My partner was put on the mortgage but has not contributed for the most part to the mortgage payments. She has now moved out as we have split up, and her and her two children have moved elsewhere. It was agreed that I would stay on at the house as I want to continue living there. She has now threatened to go to the bank to take her name of the mortgage/deeds so I will not be able to have the mortgage on my own, and has also said she wants me out the house. She initially agreed on me giving her 50% of the profits of the house market value at present after mortgage, but she is no longer being amicable. Also although she voluntarily moved out, and returned the keys to me, and is renting somewhere else, she wants to remove me from the house immediately by whatever means necessary as she says it is a joint property. Can she do that? Also is she entitled to 50% of the profits? Hello, First of all we need to establish that it was your partner who voluntarily left the house after breaking up with you. If it is true that she is the co-owner of the property with a 50% share, then she has the same rights as you. The best alternative in your situation would be to try to sell the property on amicable terms and to share out benefits, according to what was put down. If this is not possible, either of you will have the right to request at the courts, the dissolution of joint property ownership and proceed with the property auction with an identical distribution of the benefits. To force your ex- partner to come to an agreement we recommend you to engage the services of a law firm who can represent you in this matter. It is important that you avoid, in so far as possible, that she settles in the house as this would force you to accelerate procedures which could go against your interests. If she stops paying her share of the mortgage, the bank will request it from you and will repossess the property if payment is not satisfied in full. Finally please remember that any amount paid on her behalf will constitute a legal right which you will have once the property is sold.
  • Laraine Says:

    5 yrs ago I returned from Spain leaving my husband to follow me at a later date.we lived 6mths in uk 6mths in Spain.. One parent was seriously ill, and the birth of a child prompted my return.. Although things were very strained. I returned in May 2008 in Sept 2008I learned my husband wanted a divorce and to make matters worse, emptied all bank accounts leaving me destitute.. He had arranged to visit Thailand and prospective brides were waiting!, In order to freeze accounts of which there were multiple and very healthy I filed for divorce. Because he was in Spain this was very expensive, but I was able to retrieve ample funds be it 50% which was only fair. But my ex retained our villa worth £395.00 as he advertised, but said would be approx 2yrs for a sale, after 5 yrs he is making no attempt to sell he lives there with new wife ,but is making a tidy profit excess 10,000e pa He will not sell, not allow, me to share even though 2 apartments, just cuts me off when I ask,,,the agreement was I got 50% of rental To date nothing... How can I get him to sell or allow me my assists.my name are on deeds. And I worked all my life to enjoy the lifestyle but feel cheated.
  • Lorraine Says:

    My American fiancé and I (British) bought an apartment in joint names in 2004 in Galicia. He died suddenly in Galicia whilst on holiday in 2005 without any mention of me in his American will, which had been written years prior to us meeting.I have legal documents from the lawyer who dealt with his estate in America stating that his heirs ie 3 sons have relinquished their interest in the apartment. Can you advise me on how I can now remove my fiances name from the title deed leaving it solely in my name? I have been trying to sort this out for all these years and only just come across your website. I very much look forward to your reply.
  • michelle harris Says:

    Hello, my mother passed away 5 months ago. My sister and I inherited her half of a property in Barcelona. The other half is owned by her partner. He is expecting us to continue to pay bills for the property until he wants to sell. We wish to sell as we do not have the money to pay the bills it has an outstanding mortgage. Can anyone one of us force a sale. We live in the UK and he is still living in the apartment.
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Michelle, Yes, you can force a sale at the Courts to dissolve the joint ownership. However, the court sale must cover your half´s debt, otherwise you will have got rid of the house but still keep a debt. I recommend you to try and get to anagreement to sell the house in the Free Market to avoid being left at a loss. Regards,
  • michelle Harris Says:

    Thanks Patricia for your reply . I think the biggest problem is getting any agreement with my mother partner he does not speak to me at all and acts on my behalf without permission.
  • Emily Says:

    I am thinking of buying a property in Spain but want to know if buying a property jointly has the same meaning in Spain as it does in England ie if a joint owner dies the property immediately vests in the surviving joint tenant and a will is not required to do this? I wonder whether it more akin to buying as tenants in common in England? Could you please clarify this?
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Emily, The British and the Spanish system are different in that regard. In fact, in Spain we do not do leasehold transactions, there is no such concept; all purchases are freehold. When a property is bought by two parties, each of them will have 50% ownership title. If any of them dies, his/her 50% will belong to his/her heirs following an inheritance process. The heirs will be those the Spanish Law determines, unless the deceased had made a will in Spain indicating something different, so British Law would apply ( providing the deceased had Estate in the UK as well ). If the deceased only had assets in Spain and had not made a Will, Spanish Law would apply. Also, if the only owned Estate was located in Spain, and if a Will was done against Spanish Inheritance Law ( where children are legitimate heirs ), the heirs could contest the said Will in their favour. Regards,
  • Jason Says:

    Hello, Me and my father have a joint property in our names. My father also has two other properties, one joint with my sister, and one joint with my mother. Two of the properties are very difficult to let.. and we have decided to give them up to the bank. However, as all three properties are mortgaged with the same bank.. the bank said we can only give up all three.. or none. Not just two of them. We decided there to try to put the main property (joint with me and my father, just one one of our names).. and all the others just on my fathers name... so that he is then able to let them go and give them up to the bank. Could we use the dissolution of joint property in this case and just pay 1% for each property?
  • Patricia Says:

    Hello Jason, Yes, you can arrange a dissolution of the joint property ownership and pay the lowest tax - please note this tax has been recently increased; in Andalucia is now set at 1.5 %. However, we do not recommend you to regard this transaction as a solution to your problem, as the bank will still be the only responsible entity to determine if the properties are accepted in exchange of the debt. Also, be aware that the process is not as simple as delivering the keys to the property at the bank; the bank has to sign a Public document at the Notary accepting the deal to formalize the agreement that indicates they accept the properties as payment. Therefore, we believe the dissolution transaction will not change the current situation. We recommend you to talk to the bank and try to negotiate to get to a temporary agreement or change the mortgage conditions, while trying to rent out the properties, if you are not ready to let all properties go. Regards,
  • Bryan Says:

    We have a property which is jointly owned by three brother and two sisters .We are using the joint dissolution deed to transfer the ownership to one sister.The question arises what should be the value of the new escritura in the name of the new owner.One opinion says the law is the escritura should be the original value is that right ?
  • annemariep Says:

    Hi I have a property in Spain in my sole name and also another property 50% owned by myself and my estranged husband. After selling our assets in England we moved to Spain in 2008. However, we separated 3 years ago. My husband has not contributed to the upkeep and bills of the properties in the last 3 years. I now live back in England with our two teenage children in rented accommodation. He lives with his 92 year old mother and will inherit her house and very healthy savings on her demise. As I put over £70,000 of my personal money into buying the 50% owned property, we informally agreed that I would use the proceeds from selling both properties to buy a house in England for me and the children. We are now going through a divorce and he is now saying that he wants the 50% owned property in it's entirety. His solicitor is saying that they will issue proceedings for a Financial Order to resolve the matter. My question is, can a Court in England rule that I have to relinquish my 50% of the property. Can an English Court take into account property that is owned and governed under Spanish law and include within a divorce settlement. Any help or advice greatly appreciated!
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