Over the last few years it has come to light that many timeshare owners have been locked into ‘in perpetuity’ contracts. Some people knowingly signed these contracts as they believed that there were many benefits to this, including that the timeshare would be an investment for their family. Other people signed these contracts without even fully understanding what the term ‘in perpetuity’ meant. This was at not fault to the timeshare owners, as many experienced and talented timeshare salespeople possibly glossed over the true meaning or used confusing terms to make people feel that there was nothing to worry about.
The meaning of ‘in perpetuity’ in terms of a contract is really quite simple. It means that the contract not only runs for your life but will also get passed onto your next of kin or other family members. It is something that lasts forever. Many timeshare owners now feel that they are going to have to just put up with this situation as they signed the contract, but this does not have to be the case.
In December 1998, Spain passed Law 42/98 that went into effect 5th January 1999. This law was put into place to protect timeshare owners; it was the result of the European Timeshare Directives. These directives meant that each member state needed to regulate their own domestic law regulations which governed the sale of timeshare. Now Spain has some of the strongest timeshare regulations in Europe.
Unfortunately, for many years, many timeshare resorts and developers refused to abide by the laws and they continue to sell as they had before. Many timeshare owners decided to take their resort or developer to court but the cases were lost as the resorts argued that they were compliant with the laws.
In March 2015, this all changed, when the Supreme Court in Madrid ruled on the first timeshare case. The case took about 5 years to complete but it has had a knock-on effect on cases that now follow.
Resorts and developers are being taken to court for various reasons, including taking deposits or payments during the cooling off period, but one of the main reasons for this are the ‘in perpetuity’ contracts. The Supreme Court ruled that timeshare contracts should be for a minimum of three years and the maximum duration being fifty years. This means that contracts that are ‘in perpetuity’ are deemed illegal.
Some of the court cases were referred to Spain’s Highest Court, which has only strengthened the law and benefited owners. As many timeshare owners are winning their cases against the resorts and developers, more and more owners are now looking for ways to exit their mis-sold timeshare. And it’s completely understandable, why continue paying for something that you either no longer want or can’t afford and why pass that hassle on to your loved ones?
By contacting us today, you can start the ball rolling, facilitating your timeshare details so that we can let you know what your options are. In a short amount of time both you and your family could be free from your mis-sold timeshare and enjoying any compensation that you may receive.