Spain Explained

A guide for foreigners on every aspect of safe property ownership in Spain

Posts filtered by Spanish Law

Understanding the padrón, empadronamiento & residencia


Many people who are emigrating to Spain wonder, which comes first, the padrón or the empadronamiento? For those who aren’t familiar with these terms, the padrón is the town hall’s register of those living in the area. Essentially, the local government uses the register to keep a headcount of how many people are resident, and […]

Read more

The Spanish Notary: What it is, role and fees


Last updated on April 19th, 2020 at 02:38 pm. Not all countries have a notary to verify documents as they do in Spain. Here the Spanish notary is a very much respected individual whose office carries a clearly recognised ‘Notary’ sign and who trains for several additional years to qualify for the title. Most people […]

Read more

Can I apply for an NIE number online, in person or by proxy?

nie number online

Last updated on February 29th, 2020 at 06:06 pm. Spanish bureaucracy can be complex and unfortunately, you can’t apply for an NIE number online. However, with a helping hand, applying for an NIE is simple.  If you are moving to Spain or have any economic, professional or family connection with the nation, you will need […]

Read more

Weighing up the pros and cons of Spanish residency

pros and cons of spanish residency

Moving to another country is a big decision. Perhaps you know someone who has taken the leap or you’ve been on holiday somewhere and fallen in love with the people and its culture. Whatever your motivation or inspiration, it’s important not to jump too quickly. Your move will have implications not just for you but […]

Read more

How to get Spanish residency step by step

How to get Spanish residency

Last updated on June 29th, 2020 at 04:07 pm. If you want to relocate to Spain permanently, it’s important that you understand how to get Spanish residency.  After all, if you’re going to invest in property, it’s essential that your affairs are in order. For instance, if you live in Spain for 183 days a […]

Read more

New law affects home improvements

Last updated on September 25th, 2019 at 06:23 pm. Did you know that all changes made to your home, however small, need approval from the town hall in Spain? If you go ahead without the proper permission you may have to go through a process of having it legalised. Alternatively, you might even have to […]

Read more

Register your civil partnership

Last updated on October 14th, 2019 at 11:24 am. Nowadays it is very common for couples to live together without getting married. However, this can have legal and tax disadvantages. If you don’t want to marry but do want to keep your costs down then there is an alternative in Spain. This option rests somewhere […]

Read more

Meet our notary

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 03:52 pm. The role of the notary in Spain can be a little confusing to people who are not familiar with the system here. We’d like to introduce you to Doña Tatiana Martín Ruiz, the notary that many Ábaco clients have already had the pleasure of meeting. If […]

Read more

Improve your property, but legally

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 03:53 pm. Perhaps you’ve got your eye on a bargain, or it’s just time to make some changes to your house in Spain. It’s a good time to refurbish property, just make sure that the Town Hall know what you’re doing too. Jessica Martínez, from our Legal Department, […]

Read more

A new urban law that affects rustic properties

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 04:55 pm. Did you know that even minor home improvements and refurbishments need planning permission in Spain? The town hall must give a licence for work to go ahead or you risk a hefty financial penalty. In this article we explain about building licences and what you can […]

Read more

Obtaining a building permit

Unfortunately there are less-than-scrupulous builders who will claim they have obtained a building permit on your behalf, when, in fact, they have not. Having the correct building licences is, ultimately, your responsibility. In this article we explain how to make sure your reformed or extended property is legal.

Read more

How to become a Spanish national

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 04:56 pm. If you are convinced that Spain is your home and you want to take the next step in showing you belong here, you might want to consider becoming a Spanish national. In this article María Wiedemann tells us what it entails. Most people who come to […]

Read more

What does embargo mean? – Everything you need to know about embargoes

What does embargo mean

Last updated on June 5th, 2020 at 06:16 pm. Like many words, ‘embargoes’ has different connotations in Spain to what it does in the UK. For most British people when you talk about embargoes you picture a prohibition from one country on another. So what does embargo mean? It comes as something of a shock […]

Read more

EU commission rules on floor clauses

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 04:57 pm. The EU Court of Justice has ruled that banks in Spain must return all the interest on mortgages that they have over-charged prior to 2013 as well as after. During the property boom, many Spanish banks got their customers to sign mortgage agreements that included a […]

Read more

Declaring your sources

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 04:57 pm. Post Panama, more people are probably aware of the issues around money laundering. In Spain, long gone are the days when few questions were asked about the source of your finance. We explain. If you buy a property now in Spain you will be asked to […]

Read more

Spain’s banks have their knuckles rapped

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 04:57 pm. A judge has ruled that a clause included in 30% of mortgages in Spain is illegal. Ábaco’s legal department explain why and what this might mean for you. In the past, Spanish banks have not always been transparent when selling their products, particularly when it comes […]

Read more

A mini guide to official translations in Spain – guest article

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 04:58 pm. Ever wondered what an official translation is? Can just anybody produce official translations? In David Ruiz’s mini guide he includes his advice for hiring an official translator. An official translation is an accurate and legal translation of a document completed by an official translator. Official translations […]

Read more

First occupancy and habitation licences – what’s the difference?

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 04:58 pm. They are both very important documents and yet many people haven’t even heard of them, let alone know what the difference is.  Not until they want to sell their property that is. Jessica Martinez explains why they’re so vital. Every new property in Spain must be […]

Read more

Could you be a Spanish national?

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 04:59 pm. As concern about what  Brexit will mean for those living in another European country rises, some people have wondered just what it would take for them to go one step further and become a Spanish citizen. Until now, the benefits of this move for those living in […]

Read more

Making your home perfect

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 05:00 pm. Some people like to buy their property brand new and ready to move into. Others prefer to buy a resale property in Spain and customise it to exactly how they want. There are advantages in both approaches. However, at some point, even if you buy a […]

Read more

Tightening up on energy efficiency

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 05:00 pm. A new law in 2013 established the requirement for an Energy Efficiency Certificate (EEC) or Certificado de Eficiencia Energética (CEE) to be made available to purchasers of Spanish property. The idea is that making this information more accessible will encourage home owners to make their property […]

Read more

What is happening with holiday lets in the Valencian community?

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 05:01 pm. What are the renting laws in the Valencian region? Must you or must you not register your property for letting purposes here? It would seem to be a straight forward question but a straightforward answer could quite easily evade you. The original rental law was the […]

Read more

Keeping the peace

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 05:01 pm. How far should we go when it comes to keeping the peace? There is a fine line between freedom of speech and racism, between the right to protest and lawlessness. At what point does a peaceful demonstration become insupportable? Spain’s new Public Security Law or Citizen’s […]

Read more

Money Laundering in Spain

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 05:01 pm. You’ve probably heard of ‘money laundering’ but not thought you would personally be affected. However, concerns about money laundering activity in Spain means that people are suddenly finding it cropping up in quite ordinary circumstances. A number of non-residents and residents have recently been asked for […]

Read more

What is the google tax?

Last updated on October 28th, 2019 at 05:02 pm. The word ‘google’ is part of our day-to-day vocabulary. In the Oxford dictionary paperback version it is defined as ‘search for information about someone or something on the Internet, especially with the Google search engine.’ The last part of that definition is perhaps particularly interesting. There […]

Read more