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Powers of attorney with faculty to access bank accounts. Should I worry?

Civil Law

Antonio Flores Vila

7th of May 2001

Q. We are currently buying a property in Spain and have been advised to give power of attorney to the Abogado as we were due to return home to UK before things were finalised, however I am worried as this included access to our bank account. Is this normal practise and how do we know our money is safe? We have had no previous dealings with the abogado. Is there a way to check that he is reputable, he appeared so but we feel nervous about this.

Anonymous

    A. If you give a power of attorney with the faculty to access bank accounts to your lawyer, then he can access your account. That is a fact. However, you should not be worried about this, it is normal practice and problems seldom occur. The law school regulations are very strict in that respect.

    If you still need more assurances, you can avoid the clause where you empower the lawyer to access your accounts and, as an alternative, give the bank instructions, by fax, to prepare whichever payments are necessary, normally by bankers draft. The lawyer collects the drafts or cheques, and thus he never has access to your account.

    With regards to checking out a lawyer, you should address the Law School office in the province where he is practising. They may be able to help you.


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