Debt Collection in SpainUpdated on Monday 18th April 2016
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Foreign investors in Spain may find themselves in financial difficulties and deal with debt collection. In this case, he needs to know the procedure to follow in order to recover his money. He may contact a Spanish lawyer in order to recover the debt or he can act on his owns trying to recover the amount from the debtors.
The main steps for debt collection
In the case of debtors failing to pay overdue amounts of money, the first step for debt recovery in Spain is sending him a claim for payment that includes your direct request, the bill for the service/product for which you expect payment, the invoice, the term for payment etc. The claim must respect the Spanish regulations related to debt collection which also includes the refusal to pay. In this situation, a law suit can be initiated against the debtor.
Once the debtor is in possession of your claim, negotiations over the terms and installment payments may begin. The debtor’s proposals can be denied if he is trying to obtain a very long period of time and the installments are to be paid in small amounts.
After you send the claim and you don’t receive any answer or the request is not accepted, you may refer to a Spanish law firm to continue the legal procedure. The Spanish lawyers can try and collect the debt by trial or by convincing the debtor to make the payment in the terms and conditions the both parties agree.
The legislation in Spain protects the rights of the debtor, so you have to be sure that you respect the local laws.
Types of debt collection
There are two ways of recovering a debt in Spain: the out-of-court or extrajudicial procedure or the court procedure. The first procedure can be applied if the parties agree on the payment methods and amounts. If an agreement can’t be reached, the lawyer will start the judicial procedure.
If your debt to be recovered exceeds 2,000 euro and you will sue the debtor, you need to contact a lawyer in Spain who will handle the trial. The Spanish attorney will represent you in front of the local court.
The amicable procedure for collecting debts in Spain
During this stage of the debt recovery process, the lawyers will notify the debtor he must pay any outstanding amount by telephone and in writing. If he fails to pay or does not agree, court proceedings can be initiated.
Court procedure for debt recovery in Spain
Legal action to collect a debt is made up of several stages in Spain:
- - in the first stage the court will issue a compelling order for the debt to be paid;
- - in the second stage the judge will establish a court session for the case to be heard within a maximum period of six weeks.
For amounts over the sum of 6,000 euros, court proceedings can last up to two years. In the last stage, the creditor can request the bankruptcy of the debtor.
If you need more details about the debt collection, you may contact our law firm in Spain. Our Spanish attorneys will inform you about the steps of the process and the documents you need for debt collection.
We invite you to watch a video about how to recover a debt in Spain, helped by a local lawyer: