Then there is the Norwegian part of the company represented by the heir to the late Björn Lyng, his eldest son Ragnar Lyng.
It appears to have originally started around 2010 When the Norwegian family demanded Sr Cazorla´s resignation. All seemed to be well and no real arguments ensued. Then sometime between 2012 and 2013 it appears that around 8 million euros “disappeared”.
Apparently the Lyng´s noticed the diversion of these funds while a lawsuit was pending between Santana Cazorla and Lopesan at The Court of the First Instance No1 of Las Palmas.
Over the years I have seen many ways that you the timeshare or holiday club owner has been fleeced of your hard earned cash.
Firstly the bogus resale companies taking upfront fees as guarantees, with the promise you would get it refunded when your timeshare has been sold or if they are unable to sell it within a year. Then promptly disappear and reform as a new entity.
Then we had the we´ll get rid of your timeshare but to do this you have to join our non existent or never works holiday club. ILG had this well and truly sown up with the wonderful cashback scheme. You received a cashback certificate for the value of your timeshare which was more than you paid to join this new club. No one ever got the promised amount and many never got a thing.
After the closure of ILG a firm on the Costa del Sol, Ramirez and Ramirez began fleecing DWVC members, with the promise of legal action to recuperate the money lost. Other firms wanted payments upfront for doing relatively easy claims against credit card companies. Many of these claims failed or were never even instituted.
Then after Ramirez was closed down he opened as another company to claim back what clients had paid the firm Ramirez & Ramirez. Obviously using his old data.
Now we have the bogus claims companies. These make out that the courts have already seized assets from holiday clubs such as ILG or Club Class andresale companies. The modus operandi here is that you have already been awarded a substantial amount by the courts and this company has been charged with tracing you in order to pay you the money.
This sounds very nice. But then there is a small matter of tax needing to be paid. One company downloaded genuine copies of tax forms from the internet for you to fill in. Then once you have done this, a bank transfer needs to be paid to a non existent notary or some other person. Another company wanted Western Union Transfers made out to a private individual. Low and behold you never hear from them again.
Another part to this idea was the NIE Number. Some FIRMS stated you need one of these to get the money back and they would do the work for you. Obviously for a fee, usually several hundred pounds. Now the NIE is the foreign residents identification number, which you only need if you become resident in spain or are buying real estate.
There are also now the class action companies, many are taking substantial fees to pay for these actions which in most cases are never instituted.
There are genuine companies out there but finding them is very difficult. There are also law firms who specialise in timeshare law, and are very successful, these are not part of the timeshare industry and tend to be shunned or slated by the timeshare companies, resort owners and the so called trade bodies such as the RDO and TATOC. Obviously they don’t want to lose your maintenance fees or payout compensation.
Any genuine law firm will be able to show you case papers of cases they have fought and won. The lawyers will also show their bar registration numbers, all lawyers must be members of the association for the area in which they practice. These can be easily checked and credited.
You can also find information via the internet on how to get money back when payments have been made using a credit card. So there is no need to pay someone to do it.
If you need any help and advice on how to find these things out contact inside timeshare for free and impartial advice. The information is out there, you just need to know where to find it.
Over the past few years members of various resorts have become aware votes on decisions which affect their memberships are being manipulated. We have recently seen this with one company based in Tenerife, Resort Properties, where fixed weeks have been changed to floating weeks. Many of those affected have owned fixed weeks for many years, they chose their week numbers for a reason. For many it coincided with school holidays, others chose them so their holidays would be relatively kid free.
Another aspect is the length of time members need in order to book their weeks. This particular company is requiring 25 months notice, but there is no guarantee that members will get the weeks requested. For those who do not use any exchange program it could mean no holiday for 2 years, yet maintenance is still to be paid.
It has also been reported on the TCA website, that another company Macdonalds Villacana has recently manipulated the vote to force a change to floating weeks and points against the wishes of the members.
The surprising aspect of this change to floating and points, especially in Spain, is the fact the Supreme Court Rulings have declared floating weeks and points illegal. (Law 42/1998)
So how do the resorts and owners manipulate the vote?
One method is the vote allocation, each member gets 1 vote regardless of how many weeks are owned. The resorts however use 1 vote for every week they have of unsold stock. Couple this with holding meetings where the majority of members are unable to attend, and it is easy to obtain the majority required.
Another method to obtain extra votes is the manipulation of members. It is well known that some owners committees have very close ties with the resorts coupled with various incentives. In many cases the chairperson and committee members have been voted in year after year. They may also be on the committees of more than one resort. Is this ethical? I believe not. The problem is, many members may not actually have the time to take part in these committees, or may even believe they are a waste of time.
To conclude, you as the member have paid substantial amounts over the years and should not be forced to change, especially if the change then makes your contract illegal. If you are in this situation and want clarification of your rights post a comment and I will get the answers for you.