Browse Tag

Supreme Court

Anfi: Another Appeal Dismissed and Latest on New Contracts

Appeals by Anfi against the judgements of the Court of First Instance have become a common feature on Inside Timeshare, not a day seems to go by without yet another appeal being dismissed and today is no exception. Although Anfi has the legal right to lodge an appeal, it beggars belief that they continue to do so even when every single appeal is being rejected and the original sentence is being upheld. We also have a look at the latest information being given to members of Anfi regarding the signing of the “New Contracts”, which in theory conform to current timeshare legislation.

We begin with the latest case to be dismissed by the High Court Number 5 of Las Palmas, Gran Canaria.

High Court of Las Palmas Gran Canaria

The case involving a Norwegian client whose original case in the Court of First Instance Number 4 of San Bartelomé de Tirajana, was prepared and presented by Canarian Legal Alliance.

In the original sentence, this court declared the contract null and void, they also ordered that Anfi repay the client 31,770€ plus interest. A sentence that follows all those which have been past previously. After all, the courts are applying the law as laid down in 131 Supreme Court Rulings.

The three basic principles being:

  • The contract is for a duration of more than 50 years, known as perpetuity;
  • The inclusion of floating weeks and points systems;
  • The taking of payments even by a third party within the statutory cooling-off period.

In this case, the Court of First Instance followed these principles.

Yet as expected Anfi filed their appeal with the High Court, the reason, well that is pure speculation, but we do believe that it is an attempt to cause as much delay in paying as possible, plus, to cause as much stress and anxiety to the client as possible.

We already know that the Provincial Prosecutors Office is investigating Anfi, part of this investigation is centred on the movement of funds to empty bank accounts. This then prevents any embargo from being enforced as there will be no money in the accounts. This investigation could lead to criminal charges being filed.

As we have come to expect from the High Court, they dismissed the appeal and fully endorsed the sentence of the lower court.

The case has now been returned to that court for execution of sentence, so we expect this client will soon receive the payment into their own bank account.

The case was prepared and present by the CLA Lawyer Eva Gutierrez with Claims Consultant Lotta Nielson assisting the client during the long process.

Moving now to the “New Contracts” Anfi is trying so desperately to make members sign.

We have been publishing on this subject since May 2017, at this meeting, Anfi put forward three proposals for changing the new contracts. Full details on the result and the proposals can be found in the links below.

Since that time, Anfi has been trying to get members to sign the new contracts with varying excuses, these have ranged from “bringing the contracts” in line with current legislation and “updating” the member’s database. This has included adding others such as family to the contract.

The last method which they have employed recently has resulted from the closure of resorts due to the pandemic restrictions being enforced around the world.

Because of this, the vast majority of members were unable to use their weeks in 2020 and it looks very unlikely they will have any better luck this year.

What Anfi have done is nothing short of “Blackmail”, unless the member signs the new contract, the week they were unable to use last year, which they have already paid their annual maintenance fees on, will be lost.

Sign the “New Contract” and Anfi will give you an accommodation voucher to save your week for use in the coming year. We suspect this will be the same for those who are unable to use their weeks this year!

Recently, Anfi has begun yet another campaign to “force in” these new contracts, according to the independent timeshare lawyer Javier Correa, this is what Anfi are saying:

“According to the legal changes, each member now has a fixed week in the contract, so that a value is specified with the number of square meters and cadastral registration data. The inventory that is taken internally from the system can also be viewed by the member. So that you don’t have to come to the specified week, we have an extra document for you which is marked with “Registration in the flexible system”.

In this document, you relinquish the right to the week that is in the contract to us so that you can freely choose the week, the apartment and the day of arrival as usual. Nothing will change for you when using the weeks and you will remain flexible.

By enrolling in our flexible exchange system, we guarantee you will continue to be flexible, you will continue to book in the future as before”.

The underlying concern for this lawyer and on reading the above Inside Timeshare agrees this “New Contract” is being portrayed as “MANDATORY”.

Javier Correa

Considering Anfi’s attitude toward those with unused weeks, this conclusion is very valid.

So what if you sign the new contract?

The answer is very simple indeed, you lose all your legal rights to sue Anfi for the illegal selling of your contract, you waive your rights to legal redress and having your contract declared null and void, with the repayment of the full purchase price plus double any payment taken illegally within the statutory cooling-off period.

In other words, they know that with every case that is found against them by the lower courts and subsequently on appeal, more cases will follow.

Now, on reading the above which was issued by Anfi, it is clear this is another attempt to circumvent the law.

Although they claim that each member will be given a specified week and apartment number, which is the fixed week system which is allowed by law, but the telling thing is the “separate” contract or as they put it “document”. They call this the “Registration in the flexible system”.

On signing this “addendum”, the member waives their right to the numbered week and apartment and being placed in this “flexible system”. Hang on, does this not look like retaining the “Floating Weeks”?

We know not everyone is able to or wants to vacation the same week every year, most people do, but sometimes due to personal circumstances that may not be possible. Is this not what the old “internal exchange system” covered, after all, it was just like banking and exchanging with RCI or Interval International?

Only when it suits us!

So once again, we see Anfi trying to pull the proverbial wool over the eyes of their “valued members”, no doubt there will be some lawyer who will find that this “New Contract” is just as illegal as the original. This is something which we will watch with great interest and we expect that it will be contested in the courts at some point in the future.

If you would like further information on your legal rights regarding illegal contracts whether it is Anfi or any other resort, please use our contact page and Inside Timeshare will get back to you.

Past articles on Anfi Special Meeting

https://insidetimeshare.com/anfi-sgm-what-are-they-up-to/

https://insidetimeshare.com/anfi-special-general-meeting-vote/

Anfi and the new contract to save weeks.

https://insidetimeshare.com/start-the-week-anfi-continues-to-upset-members/

Anfi in the press

https://insidetimeshare.com/anfi-hits-spanish-television-news/

https://insidetimeshare.com/news-update-jsd-group-anfi-back-in-the-news/

Translations

Danish

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=en&tl=da&u=https://insidetimeshare.com/anfi-another-appeal-dismissed-and-latest-on-new-contracts/

Dutch

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=en&tl=nl&u=https://insidetimeshare.com/anfi-another-appeal-dismissed-and-latest-on-new-contracts/

Finnish

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=en&tl=fi&u=https://insidetimeshare.com/anfi-another-appeal-dismissed-and-latest-on-new-contracts/

German

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=en&tl=de&u=https://insidetimeshare.com/anfi-another-appeal-dismissed-and-latest-on-new-contracts/

Norwegian

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=en&tl=no&u=https://insidetimeshare.com/anfi-another-appeal-dismissed-and-latest-on-new-contracts/

Swedish

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=en&tl=sv&u=https://insidetimeshare.com/anfi-another-appeal-dismissed-and-latest-on-new-contracts/

Marriott Lose again in the Courts: The Full Story

Today we take a look at the latest case involving Marriott, these cases are now hitting the courts on a regular basis, not only in Malaga but also on the Island of Mallorca. In all cases, the courts are finding in favour of the clients in accordance with the rulings and judgements of the Supreme Court. Marriott resorts are renowned to be among the best in timeshare, but the problem as with all timeshare is not the resorts but the way in which it is sold and the illegal nature of the contracts.

In this case, the defending parties are MVCI Holidays SL and MVCI Management SL, two Spanish registered companies. The case was heard in the Court of First Instance Number 4 of Marbella, Malaga. The case number is 1.275/19 with the sentence being made public on 22 February 2021.

The case was brought on behalf of an English client with the case being prepared and presented by the Lawyers of Canarian Legal Alliance.

The client’s story begins in June 2004 when along with his wife and three young children they booked a holiday in the Elviria Marriott Beach Resort, which is known as the Marriott Marbella Beach Resort which is situated on Playa Elviria, Marbella.

Marriott Marbella Beach Resort at Playa Elviria

During their stay, they were invited to the inevitable “presentation” which we know is nothing unusual when staying in any resort which sells timeshare.

After several hours of what we all know is a “high pressure” sales presentation, they were suitably impressed with what they were shown and what was on offer. Unbeknown to them at the time this was to be a very expensive “investment”.

They signed up to the Gold Package 3 bedroom apartment, these are not fixed weeks which are legal in Spanish law, but a points-based floating week system, which is forbidden by law and confirmed in rulings from the Supreme Court.

The contract was also in “perpetuity”, which does not conform to the law which clearly states that timeshare should be for a duration of a minimum of 3 years and a maximum of 50 years. Perpetuity has no end date and is therefore illegal.

They also paid a deposit on the day of signing of £4,300, which is also illegal under Spanish Timeshare Law 42/98.

On returning home to England, they felt nervous about what they had done, but obviously, they did not want to lose the deposit they paid and agreed to pay the balance. This was done in two instalments of £8,450 in July and a further £8,450 in August.

Marbella Beach Resort at Night

During the presentation, they were informed that Marbella Beach Resort was their “home” resort and they would “always be able to book their chosen week”. Their chosen week is what is known as the “Spring bank holiday” in England which is usually around the last week in May and the first week in June and this coincided with the school holidays. So it seemed perfect for the family getaway.

Another reason they chose this resort was they also had family friends with apartments/villas close by which made for a superb family holiday.

According to the clients, for the first 7 years everything seemed to go as planned and promised, they holidayed the same week every year with their friends. Then things went sour.

Since 2013 they have been unable to book those weeks, at first, they were told they had left their booking too late and all the weeks had been taken. The following year the client’s wife called the booking office on the first day the following year’s dates were released. This was at 9 am, but they were told that all the weeks at their “home” resort had already been taken and there was no availability.

This is a point that Inside Timeshare has heard so many times with points and floating weeks, not just from Marriott members but other resorts as well, such as Anfi, Diamond and Club la Costa. Hence why these systems are not legal.

Since that experience, they have “banked” their weeks with Interval International each and every year.

In 2018, they once again failed to book their preferred weeks and were provisionally offered the 2nd week in November. A long way off the May/June weeks they initially used.

When trying to bank this with Interval International, they were told they had “too many weeks” in the system and were unable to “bank” them for that year.

When they initially signed up, their annual maintenance fees were 608€ per year, this has risen to 1,300€. Over the last eight years, they estimate they have paid around 10,000€ for their “home” resort, even though they have been unable to book or use it.

They also found what we have been saying in our past articles on “Independent Booking Versus Timeshare”, (see links below), that they would have been able to book the weeks they required in a 3 bedroom apartment online. As we have shown in our articles this is common and in many cases, the cost is well below the annual maintenance fee, especially when you figure in the purchase cost, paying maintenance fees for unused weeks and all the “exchange” fees which Interval International charges.

https://insidetimeshare.com/marriott-timeshare-versus-independent-booking/

https://insidetimeshare.com/marriott-timeshare-versus-independent-booking-part-2/

They then signed up with Canarian Legal Alliance to take their case to court, this was at the end of 2018. After all the translations of documents had been completed the case went to the lawyers for preparation and was finally accepted as a valid and viable case by the court in November 2019.

Now, just about a year later the court has issued their judgment, they agreed the contracts were illegal and declared them null and void. The court also ordered that Marriott repay 41,633€ plus legal interest and legal costs.

The lawyers at CLA have now begun the process of applying to the court for execution of sentence and the retrieval of the full amount. They are confident that Marriott will comply and that recovery will be expedited in a very short time.

On this point, we must also remind you that in July 2018, Inside Timeshare published the news that Marriott had admitted they were losing in the Spanish Courts and had set aside around $16.3 million to cover litigation costs. This was published in Market Exclusive and can be found on the link below.

https://marketexclusive.com/marriott-vacations-worldwide-corporation-nysevac-files-an-8-k-other-events-4/2018/07/amp/

With this in mind, we do expect a speedy resolution to this case and Inside Timeshare will publish when the clients have received the money into their own account.

If you would like further information on the legality of timeshare contracts in Spain and would like to know your legal position or if you have a valid and viable case, please use our contact page and Inside Timeshare will get back to you.

Translations

Danish

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=es&tl=da&u=https://insidetimeshare.com/marriott-lose-again-in-the-courts-the-full-story/

Dutch

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=es&tl=nl&u=https://insidetimeshare.com/marriott-lose-again-in-the-courts-the-full-story/

Finnish

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=es&tl=fi&u=https://insidetimeshare.com/marriott-lose-again-in-the-courts-the-full-story/

German

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=es&tl=de&u=https://insidetimeshare.com/marriott-lose-again-in-the-courts-the-full-story/

Norwegian

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=es&tl=no&u=https://insidetimeshare.com/marriott-lose-again-in-the-courts-the-full-story/

Swedish

https://translate.google.com/translate?sl=en&tl=sv&u=https://insidetimeshare.com/marriott-lose-again-in-the-courts-the-full-story/


Start the Week: Scammers Update & Another Anfi Appeal Dismissed

Welcome to the start of another week with Inside Timeshare, as usual, the weekend has brought new emails from readers who have been contacted by some of the companies we have highlighted. These have given some new information which will be useful to our readers and those looking for information. We also bring you the news of yet another Anfi appeal being rejected by the High Court, this news came in late on Friday.

Last week we highlighted the Greek scam from the Hellenic Republic Ministry of Foreign Affairs, this highlighted new names, emails addresses and bank account details. This also included copies of what looks like “official” letters, but as we already know, they are fake.

Our latest reader has received a call from Stephanie or Tiffany Houghton, who claims to be in Athens and working for the bank that is holding the money that has been “refunded by the courts”. She also had all our readers details of their dealings with Monster, which is highly suspicious.

The telephone number that was used for the call is 0800 368 9445, this number has very negative reviews which certainly point to a scam on various “who called” websites.

Our reader also received an email from 

[email protected]

Again this is an email provider such as the one on this link:

https://temp-mail.org/

They required the payment of 847.02€ to complete and settle outstanding “tax & debts” before the 8,860.28€ can be released. This will be paid by Areios Pagos, which is actually the Supreme Civil and Criminal Court of Greece. This is for “past” payments to Monster Club, Jive Hippo and other companies which supposedly went into administration in January 2020. Jive Hippo in the UK had a notice of “Compulsory Dissolution” published in The Gazette (official UK bulletin) in December 2020, a full 12 months after the date they gave. According to company records this has not yet been completed.

Jive Hippo UK Company House Records

https://find-and-update.company-information.service.gov.uk/company/09863488

PDF of Gazette Notice.

The “beneficiary” of this payment is once again a named individual and not the bank or any official body.

Payment is to be made to Slabea Stella who uses the email address:

[email protected]

Postal Address:

Athinas 1 Thessaloniki 54634 

On Google Street View this looks like a chemist or plumbers shop.

The new number to come up is: +30 698 199 1197

At present our reader has not yet received the bank details for the payment, but once again payment to a named individual is highly suspicious.

We now move to another reader who has been contacted by Litigation Services SL, which we have highlighted before and have linked to several other scams operating: 

O1C Leisure and Legal Solutions SL

Inconel Administration SL

Platinum Services and Administration SL

https://insidetimeshare.com/its-friday-and-the-end-of-another-week/

https://insidetimeshare.com/end-of-the-week-and-another-fake-firm-emerges/

https://insidetimeshare.com/more-consumer-warnings/

According to the email our reader has received, the following are subject to the case:

Case Ref: Monster Travel SL, Sell My Timeshare SL, Hollywood Marketing SA, ABC Group SA, Lansdown Finance Ltd, Jive Hippo SA and associate ECC & M1 Legal SL.

If you notice they have included ECC & M1 Legal in their “case”. Now considering this is a very successful and respected law firm that is winning in the courts against various timeshare companies and “holiday clubs”, this does seem very strange indeed.

M1 Legal have been notified of this fact.

Litigation Services SL, also claim they have had successful “prosecutions and convictions”  against the following:

MacAnthony Realty International SL

Incentive Leisure Group SL

Instant Access SA

Blue Chip SL

Dream Homes Worldwide SL

Not bad considering these companies have not existed for years.

Once again this shows how careful you must be when contacted out of the blue by companies claiming to be law firms with the wonderful news of either money waiting for you or that they have a case going and you can be part of it.

The question you should first ask yourself is how have they got so much information on my dealings with any timeshare or other company?

We now move to the news of another Anfi appeal being dismissed and rejected by the High Court in Las Palmas, this news came in late on Friday afternoon.

The English client originally won their case at the Court of First Instance Number 2 of San Bartolomé de Tirajana, where the judge ruled the contract null and void, ordering Anfi to repay the client 27,644€ plus legal interest. This included the repayment in double, the amount taken illegally as a deposit within the Statutory cooling-off period, this amounted to 15,358€.

As we have come to expect from Anfi they decided to waste the court’s time and also a whole lot of money in lodging an appeal, which we have seen are constantly being dismissed and rejected by the High Court.

Both the High Court and the Court of First Instance are basing their rulings on the 131 rulings made by the Supreme Court.

Once again this case was prepared and presented by the lawyers of Canarian Legal Alliance.

If you have been contacted by any company regarding your timeshare, either for an exit or a potential claim and would like to know if they are genuine, please use our contact page and we will get back to you.

Do you think you may have a valid and viable claim or a possible illegal contract, again use our contact page and Inside Timeshare will get back to you with the relevant information.

Once again we remind you to

DO YOUR HOMEWORK FIRST!