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UK GOV: How to obtain legal aid in Spain

Anne2019Posted by Anne2019 on Wed May 19, 2021 5:10pm in Off topic
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Advise everyone to join the UK GOV updates website.  Just click on link.   Or highlight; cut & paste into google search.

www.gov.uk/government/publications/legal-aid-in-spain?

It's a long 'un.  So make a cuppa, are you sitting comfortably.......

Guidance Spain: legal aid

Guidance on how British nationals can obtain legal aid while in Spain.

From: Foreign & Commonwealth Office and Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office Published12 March 2013Last updated 18 May 2021 — See all updates

Who can benefit from legal aid in Spain
  • Spanish citizens
  • nationals of other Member States of the European Union
  • any other foreign national have the right to legal aid in Spain if they can demonstrate insufficient means for litigation, and provided they are resident in Spain or are able to show an automatic qualification regardless of residence (see below)
  • public-interest associations, foundations, and employment law cases may also qualify for legal aid in Spain

Your particular circumstances and the type of court case you are party to will determine whether you automatically qualify for legal aid in Spain (see Automatic right to legal aid, or if access is dependent on the outcome of financial means testing (see Means testing thresholds.

Automatic right to legal aid in Spain (not means tested)

Regardless of the existence of sufficient financial means, the nationality or residency status of the applicant, legal aid in Spain is automatically granted to:

  • victims of gender or domestic violence; human trafficking; and terrorism; in any prosecutions linked to, arising from, or being the consequence of their status as a victim
  • children and adults incapacitated due to intellectual disabilities or mental health, when they have been victims of abuse or neglect
  • any person in employment or in receipt of Spanish Social Security benefits, pursuing or involved in employment proceedings

In addition, the right to free legal aid is recognised for those who, due to an accident, can prove permanent consequences that completely prevent them from performing the duties of their regular job or profession and who require the help of other people to perform essential daily activities, when the object of the litigation is a claim for compensation for personal injury and moral damages.

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If you have been a victim of a crime not listed above and wish to know if you are eligible for legal aid, you should contact the nearest victims of crime office in your region of Spain, Colegio de Abogados (local Bar Association) or the legal aid office at the court regarding your particular case.

Means testing thresholds

If none of the above circumstances apply to you and you wish to request legal aid in Spain, your application will be subject to means testing based on the following income thresholds:

  • incomes must not exceed two times the IPREM (Spanish official public income index) when the applicant is not part of a family unit. For example, in 2021 the (monthly) IPREM is 564,90€
  • two and a half times the IPREM if the applicant is part of a family unit (less than 4 members)
  • three times the IPREM if the family unit comprises 4 or more people

Legal aid for disputes

Criminal matters

Legal aid is available for all cases for all citizens, even foreigners, who can demonstrate insufficient means for litigation, even when they do not legally reside in Spain. It covers all proceedings, except minor offences, for which the services of a ‘procurador’ and lawyer are not compulsory, unless the person against whom the criminal proceedings are addressed has exercised his right to be assisted by a lawyer and the Court considers it appropriate, taking into account the seriousness of the offence in question and the personal circumstances of the applicant for legal aid. It includes appeals and enforcement of judgments.

Legal aid for victims

Legal aid is automatically granted to victims of gender or domestic violence; human trafficking; and terrorism; for any prosecutions linked to, arising from, or being the consequence of their status as a victim.

If you have been a victim of a crime not listed above and wish to know if you are eligible for legal aid, you should contact the nearest victims of crime office in your region of Spain, Colegio de Abogados or the legal aid office at the court regarding your particular case.

Civil matters

Legal aid is available for cases involving sums of over €901.52 and also includes appeals and enforcement of judgements.

In cases involving smaller sums, for which the services of a procurator and lawyer are not compulsory (those proceedings involving sums of less than €2.000), legal aid may be granted where the other party has legal representation or where explicitly called for by the judge or court to ensure that the two parties are on an equal footing.

The same rule is applicable to admonitory (“monitorio”) proceedings which are civil claims, typically used for smaller amounts, demanding the payment of documented debts.



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Anne2019

Anne2019

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