Timeshare companies in Spain and elsewhere have been ignoring laws enacted to protect consumers from unscrupulous high pressure sales in holiday hotspots.
Since 1999, timeshare companies in Spain and elsewhere have been ignoring laws enacted to protect consumers from unscrupulous high pressure sales operations in holiday hotspots. Initially the unnavigable Spanish legal system served as a protective safeguard for the resorts, as foreign timeshare owners had neither the stamina, nor Spanish legal knowledge to challenge the illegal practices.
Claims firms like ECC, together with Spanish firms of timeshare lawyers like ourselves at M1 Legal changed all of that.
ECC filters and checks the feasibility of the claims, qualifying them for M1 legal. M1 then manages the legal process, from start to finish.
"Every year we grow and achieve more victories than the year before," says Fernando Sansegundo, head of M1 Legal. "By August we have already reached 250 court victories on behalf of our clients, which is several percentage points up from the record set last year.
"We are seven months into 2022, and so far M1 has won £4.1 million in compensation awards for timeshare victims. We are on schedule to reach £6.2 million by year's end, and a total of 362 victories. This would be yet another record year for M1 Legal."Top 4 Resorts by award totals "We represent people who were illegally sold to by many different timeshare companies," says Sansegundo. "We have achieved consumer victories against all of those resorts.
"The most heavily penalised resort so far this year has been Club La Costa. M1 has had 116 successes against them so far this year and £2.1 million in compensation awarded.
"Next comes Anfi with 61 awards, totalling $1,000,000 in compensation. Diamond Resorts Europe come in at number 3. DRE have 22 awards against them and $304,591 in compensation for former clients.
"Finally we have Marriott Vacation Club with 17 awards and well over a quarter of a million in compensation awarded against them.
"The remaining $647,257 of awards was spread between a host of other, smaller resorts."
Whilst the average compensation award is around Ј20,000, some awards are far higher than this. The top 3 amounts so far in 2022 are:
"One of the greatest pleasures in my job is making the call to a client to give them the news that they won their compensation case," says Fernando. "I hear tears of happiness and great emotion down the phone line. The larger amounts can literally change people's lives. Many of our clients tell us that they would have been happy just to escape the financial burden of the timeshare membership.
"When I inform them that they have been awarded tens of thousands of dollars as well, sometimes they can barely speak for joy."
Every case is different, and because the timeshare industry spent over two full decades issuing illegal contracts, there are too many people for M1 to speak to directly. In order to make sure we only deal with people who have a solid claim, M1 works together with the leading international claims firm, European Consumer Claims (ECC).
ECC filters out the strongest claims and passes those over to us at M1 Legal. This way we maintain our 98.6% success rate, and also people with weaker claims do not waste money on legal action that may not be fruitful.
For a free, no obligation, confidential assessment of your available options for escaping your timeshare membership, get in touch with our team at Timeshare Advice Centre.