Case study 1 - family law - divorce - Spain

In this case study on family law – divorce, Member States were asked to advise parties filing for divorce on litigation costs in the following situations:

Case A – National situation: a couple gets married. Later they separate and agree to a divorce.

Case B – Transnational situation: two nationals from the same Member State (Member State A) get married. The marriage is celebrated in Member State A. After the wedding, the couple moves to live and work in another Member State (Member State B) where they establish their residence. Soon afterwards the couple separates. The wife returns to Member State A while the husband remains in Member State B. The couple agree to divorce. Upon her return to Member State A, the wife immediately files for a divorce before the courts of Member State B.

Costs in Spain

Costs for court, appeals and alternative dispute resolution

Case study

Court

Appeals

Alternative dispute resolution

Initial costs

General costs

Other costs

Initial costs

General costs

Other costs

Is this option available for this type of case?

Costs

Case A

Initial costs.- Deposits to lawyer and legal representative, unless the party is entitled to legal aid under Law 1/1996 on legal aid.

Divorce by mutual consent is one of the cases exempted from the requirement to pay a court fee. In contested divorce proceedings a fee is payable unless the measures requested only concern minors.

These are the general costs of proceedings. These are payable by the party whose claims have all been dismissed (the principle that the losing party bears the costs), unless the case raises serious matters de facto or de jure to be clarified (Article 394(1) of the Civil Procedure Law). If the request is granted or dismissed in part, each party must pay their own costs and half the joint costs.

The principle that the losing party bears the costs (Article 394.2 of the Civil Procedure Law) applies in contested divorce cases.

Experts' fees and expenses incurred in obtaining copies, attestations, notarial instruments and deeds or extracts from public registers.

The same as at first instance.

The same rule applies as at first instance.

The same rule applies as at first instance.

In Spain there is provision for mediation in family law cases, but the Autonomous Communities have jurisdiction in this matter.

In principle, the Autonomous Communities have made provision for mediation free of charge.

Case B

Initial costs.- Deposits to lawyer and legal representative, unless the party is entitled to legal aid under Law 1/1996 on legal aid).

Divorce by mutual consent is one of the cases exempted from the requirement to pay a court fee. In contested divorce proceedings a fee is payable unless the measures requested only concern minors.

These are the general costs of proceedings In contested divorce proceedings, these are payable by the party whose claims have all been dismissed (Article 394(1) of the Civil Procedure Law).

Offers of evidence, drafting of the agreement governing the termination of the marriage.

Applicants must make a prior deposit, unless they are entitled to legal aid.

The same rule applies as at first instance.

The same rule applies as at first instance.

In Spain there is provision for mediation in family law cases, but the Autonomous Communities have jurisdiction in this matter.

Those paid to the professionals used in the process [Translator's note: missing text at end]

Costs of lawyers, administrators and experts

Case study

Lawyers

Administrators.

Experts

Is representation compulsory?

Costs

Is representation compulsory?

Pre-judgement costs

Post-judgement costs

Is use compulsory?

Costs

Case A

They must be assisted by a lawyer and represented by a legal representative (Article 750 of the Civil Procedure Law)

An advance must be paid on fees for a lawyer and legal representative. In contested divorce proceedings post-judgment costs in respect of the losing party.

Does not represent the parties

None

None

Owing to the nature of this procedure, they are not generally used.

None

Case B

They must be assisted by a lawyer and represented by a legal representative (Article 75 of the Civil Procedure Law)

An advance must be paid on fees for a lawyer and legal representative. In contested divorce proceedings post-judgment costs in respect of the losing party.

Does not represent the parties

None

None

Owing to the nature of this procedure, they are not generally used.

None

Costs of witnesses, deposit or guarantee and other costs.

Case study

Witness compensation

Deposit

Other costs

Are witnesses compensated?

Costs

Does this exist? When and how is it used?

Costs

Description

Costs

Case A

Witnesses are entitled to claim for loss or harm incurred in attending hearings from the party that has called them (Article 375(1) of the Civil Procedure Law)

Part of these is included in the costs paid

No prior deposit is required

None

Extracts from civil status records, marriage certificates or certificates proving the existence of children, where relevant for their claim to entitlement (Article 777(2) of the Civil Procedure Law)

As applicable

Case B

Witnesses are entitled to claim compensation from the party that has called them for any losses incurred as a result of attending hearings (Article 375(1) of the Civil Procedure Law)

Part of these is included in the costs

No prior deposit is required

None

Extracts from civil status records, marriage certificates or certificates proving the existence of children, where relevant for their claim to entitlement (Article 777(2) of the Civil Procedure Law)

As applicable

Costs of legal aid and other reimbursements

Case study

Legal aid

Reimbursements

When and under what conditions is it applicable?

When is the support total?

Conditions:

Can the winning party obtain reimbursement of litigation costs?

Case A

To those who can provide evidence of insufficient financial resources for litigation (including fees of legal representative)

Parties will be deemed to have insufficient resources when they can provide evidence that all the components of their annual resources and revenue, calculated by family unit, do not exceed twice the Public Income Indicator with Multiple Effects (IPREM) applicable at the time of application.

This depends on the agreement, if any, reached with their lawyer.

Case B

To those who can provide evidence of insufficient financial resources for litigation (including fees of legal representative)

Parties will be deemed to have insufficient resources when they can provide evidence that all the components of their annual resources and revenue, calculated by family unit, do not exceed twice the Public Income Indicator with Multiple Effects (IPREM) applicable at the time of application.

This depends on the agreement, if any, reached with their lawyer.

Costs of interpretation and translation

Case study

Translation

Interpretation

When and under what conditions is it applicable?

What are the approximate costs?

When and under what conditions is it necessary?

What are the approximate costs?

Case A

Case B

All the foreign public or private documents necessary under the legal conditions established

(translated by officially recognised sworn translator)

Translators set their own rates.

Interpreters for the proceedings, as necessary.

Interpreters set their own rates.

Last update: 08/11/2019

The national language version of this page is maintained by the respective Member State. The translations have been done by the European Commission service. Possible changes introduced in the original by the competent national authority may not be yet reflected in the translations. The European Commission accepts no responsibility or liability whatsoever with regard to any information or data contained or referred to in this document. Please refer to the legal notice to see copyright rules for the Member State responsible for this page.

Case study 2 - family law - custody of the children - Spain

In this case study on family law — custody of children — Member States were asked to advise the plaintiff on litigation costs in the following situations:

Case A – National situation: Two people have lived together for a number of years without being married. They have a three-year-old child when they separate. A court decision gives custody of the child to the mother and visiting rights to the father. The mother sues to limit the father's visiting rights.

Case B – Transnational case, where you are a lawyer in Member State A: Two people have lived together without being married in a Member State (Member State B) for a number of years. They have a child together, but they separate immediately after the birth of the child. A decision by a court in Member State B gives custody of the child to the mother and visiting rights to the father. The mother and child move to live in another Member State (Member State A), which they are authorised to do by the court decision, and the father remains in Member State B. Some years later, the mother sues in Member State A to modify the father's visiting rights.

Costs in Spain

Costs for court, appeals and alternative dispute resolution

Case study

Court

Appeals

Alternative dispute resolution

Initial costs

General costs

Initial costs

Is this option open for this type of case?

Case A

Initial costs: Advances paid to the lawyer (abogado) and the legal representative (procurador), unless the party is entitled to legal aid under Law 1/1996 on legal aid.

If the proceeding only concerns guardianship and custody of the minor, no fee is payable (Article 4(1) of Law 10/2012).

These are the general costs of the proceedings, payable by a party which has had all its claims dismissed (Article 394(1) of the Code of Civil Procedure) after assessment of the costs.

The party lodging an appeal must make a prior deposit, unless entitled to legal aid (15th additional provision of the Organic Law on the Judiciary - LOPJ).

If the proceeding only concerns guardianship and custody of the minor, no fee is payable (Article 4(1) of Law 10/2012).

The parties may agree on other visiting arrangements. This should be done through an agreement which must be notified by the Public Prosecutor and approved by a judicial authority.

The parties may, by mutual agreement, ask for the proceedings to be stayed and avail themselves of mediation in accordance with Law 5/212 of 6 July 2012.

Information on the mediation services is available on the justice administration portal. In-court mediation is provided by courts free of charge.

Case B

The same as for the previous case.

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Costs of lawyers, bailiffs and experts

Case study

Lawyers

Bailiffs

Experts

Is representation compulsory?

Costs

Is representation compulsory?

Pre-judgment costs

Post-judgment costs

Is use compulsory?

Case A

The parties must be assisted by a lawyer and represented by a legal representative (Article 750 of the Code of Civil Procedure).

In cases of mutual agreement, the parties may use a single lawyer and legal representative.

An advance must be paid on fees for a lawyer and legal representative. In contentious proceedings, the losing party may ultimately have to pay the costs.

No representation of the parties.

None

None

The use of certain specialists (psychologists) may be necessary.

The party proposing the specialist pays, unless the court's psycho-social experts are used.

Case B

The same as for the previous case.

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Costs of witness compensation, pledges or security and other relevant fees

Case study

Witness compensation

Pledge or security

Other costs

Are witnesses compensated?

Costs

Does this exist? When and how is it used?

Costs

Description

Case A

Witnesses are entitled to claim for losses incurred in attending hearings from the party that has called them (Article 375(1) of the Code of Civil Procedure).

Part of the cost is included in the payment of costs.

No prior pledge or security is required.

None

Certificates from civil status records, such as birth of children (currently free of charge) or other documents relevant to their claim to entitlement.

Case B

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Costs of legal aid and other reimbursements

Case study

Legal aid

Reimbursements

When and under what conditions is it applicable?

Conditions:

Can the winning party obtain reimbursement of litigation costs?

Are there occasions when legal aid expenses are reimbursed to the organisation providing the legal aid?

Case A

It applies to persons who can prove that they have insufficient finances to institute legal proceedings (for example for a lawyer and legal representative)

Lack of financial means is said to exist where the individual can demonstrate that his or her resources and income, calculated annually, from all sources and per family unit, do not exceed double the Public Index of Income (IPREM) in effect at the time of the application.

This will depend on the agreement concluded with the lawyer, if any. If no such agreement has been reached, the costs are payable by a party which has had all its claims dismissed (Article 394(1) of the Code of Civil Procedure), subject to certain exceptions.

The reimbursable costs are the lawyer's fees, provided they do not exceed one third of the amount of the claim, the fees of the legal representative, and any other fees, which can be reimbursed after assessment of the costs.

Case B

The same as for the previous case.

Idem

Idem

Idem

Costs of interpretation and translation

Case study

Translation

Interpretation

When and under what conditions is it necessary?

What are the approximate costs?

When and under what conditions is it necessary?

What are the approximate costs?

Case B

All foreign public or private documents that may be required under conditions laid down by law (translation by an officially recognised sworn translator).

Interpreters' fees are variable.

Interpreters for the proceedings where this proves necessary. Interpreters are necessary when a person who does not speak the language has to be questioned, to make a statement or to be notified of a court decision. No fee is payable if the interpreter is requested by the court itself. Any person who speaks the language in question and who has sworn or promised to translate accurately may be appointed as interpreter.

In other cases, interpreters' fees are variable.

Last update: 08/11/2019

The national language version of this page is maintained by the respective Member State. The translations have been done by the European Commission service. Possible changes introduced in the original by the competent national authority may not be yet reflected in the translations. The European Commission accepts no responsibility or liability whatsoever with regard to any information or data contained or referred to in this document. Please refer to the legal notice to see copyright rules for the Member State responsible for this page.

Case study 3 - family law - alimony - Spain

In this case study on family law – maintenance allowances – Member States were asked to advise the plaintiff on the legal costs in the following situations:

Case A – National situation: Two people have lived together unmarried for a number of years. They have a three‑year‑old child when they separate. A court gives custody of the child to the mother. The only outstanding dispute relates to the amount of the child maintenance owed to the mother by the father for the support and education of the child. The mother sues the father.

Case B – Transnational situation, where you are a lawyer in Member State A: Two people have lived together unmarried in Member State B. They have a three-year-old child. They separate. A court in Member State B gives custody of the child to the mother. With the agreement of the father, the mother and child move to Member State A, where they establish their residence.

A dispute remains outstanding. This relates to the amount of the child maintenance owed to the mother by the father for the support and education of the child. The mother sues the father in Member State A.

Costs in Spain

Costs for court, appeals and alternative dispute resolution

Case study

Court

Appeals

Alternative dispute resolution

Initial costs

General costs

Other costs

Initial costs

General costs

Other costs

Is this option open for this type of case?

Costs

Case A

Initial costs: Advances paid to the party’s lawyer (abogado) and legal representative (procurador), unless the party is entitled to legal aid under Law 1/1996 on legal aid.

These are the general costs of the proceedings. In a contested divorce the general costs are payable by a party which has had all its claims dismissed (Art. 394(1) of the Code of Civil Procedure).

In family law, the usual practice is not to award costs for the proceedings but to split the costs, with each party paying only his or her own costs. However, in some cases a party whose claims have been dismissed may be required to pay the costs.

If only some of the claims submitted are successful, each party must pay only his/her own costs.

If the case concerns only the payment of maintenance for a child, no costs are charged (Art. 4(1) Law 10/2012).

Offers of evidence, drafting of separation settlement. If expert evidence is requested, the expert must be paid. In cases of mutual agreement, payment for the drafting of the settlement is normally included in the total fees paid to the lawyer.

The party lodging an appeal must make a prior deposit, unless entitled to legal aid.

The same criterion applies as at first instance.

The same criterion applies as at first instance.

The parties may agree on a separation settlement in which they voluntarily establish the amount of maintenance. The settlement must be notified by the Public Prosecutor and approved by the court.

The costs paid to the professional staff taking part in the negotiating process.

Case B

The same as in the previous case

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Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Costs for lawyers, bailiffs and experts

Case study

Lawyers

Bailiffs

Experts

Is representation compulsory?

Costs

Is representation compulsory?

Pre-trial costs

Post-trial costs

Is use compulsory?

Costs

Case A

The parties must be assisted by a lawyer (abogado) and represented by a legal representative (procurador) (Art. 750 Code of Civil Procedure).

In the event of mutual agreement, the parties may make use of the services of a single lawyer and a single representative to submit the agreement between them.

An advance has to be paid on fees for a lawyer and legal representative. In contentious proceedings the losing party may ultimately have to pay the costs.

No representation of the parties.

Not applicable in these proceedings.

None

None

Because of the nature of these proceedings there is not usually any role for experts.

None.

If an expert opinion is requested, the expert must be paid, unless he/she comes from the psycho-social centre attached to the court.

Case B

The parties must be assisted by a lawyer and represented by a legal representative (Art. 750 Code of Civil Procedure).

In the event of mutual agreement, the parties may make use of the services of a single lawyer and a single representative to submit the agreement between them.

An advance has to be paid on fees for a lawyer and legal representative. In contentious proceedings the losing party may ultimately have to pay the costs.

No representation of the parties.

Not applicable in these proceedings.

None

None

Because of the nature of these proceedings there is not usually any role for experts.

None.

If an expert opinion is requested, the expert must be paid, unless he/she comes from the psycho-social centre attached to the court.

Costs for witness compensation, pledges or security and other relevant fees

Case study

Witness compensation

Pledges or security

Other costs

Are witnesses compensated?

Costs

Does this exist and when and how is it used?

Costs

Description

Costs

Case A

Witnesses are entitled to obtain compensation from the party calling them for losses caused by their appearance in court (Art. 375(1) Code of Civil Procedure).

Part of the cost is included in the payment of costs.

No prior pledge or security has to be lodged.

None

Certificates from the Registry of Births, Marriages and Deaths, marriage certificates or birth certificates of children, documents on which they base their entitlement (Art. 777(2) Code of Civil Procedure).

As appropriate

Case B

Witnesses are entitled to obtain compensation from the party calling them for losses caused by their appearance in court (Art. 375(1) Code of Civil Procedure).

Part of the cost is included in the payment of costs.

No prior pledge or security has to be lodged.

None

Certificates from the Registry of Births, Marriages and Deaths, marriage certificates or birth certificates of children, documents on which they base their entitlement (Art. 777(2) Code of Civil Procedure).

As appropriate

Costs for legal aid and other reimbursements

Case study

Legal Aid

Reimbursement

When and under which conditions does it apply?

When is full aid given?

Conditions?

Can the winning party obtain reimbursement of the litigation costs?

Case A

It applies to persons who can prove that they have insufficient finances to institute legal proceedings (for example for a lawyer and legal representative).

Lack of financial means is said to exist where the individual can demonstrate that his or her resources and income, calculated annually, from all sources and per family unit, do not exceed double the Public Index of Income (Indicador Público de Renta de Efectos Múltiples – IPREM) in effect at the time of the application.

The Public Index of Income (IPREM) is an index used in Spain as a reference for granting allowances, scholarships, grants and the unemployment allowance, among others. It can be calculated here:Link opens in new windowhttp://www.iprem.com.es

The winning party can obtain reimbursement of the litigation costs if the other party is ordered to pay costs..

Case B

It applies to persons who can prove that they have insufficient finances to institute legal proceedings (for example for a lawyer and legal representative).

Lack of financial means is said to exist where the individual can demonstrate that his or her resources and income, calculated annually from all sources and per family unit, do not exceed double the Public Index of Income (IPREM) in effect at the time of the application.

The Public Index of Income (IPREM) is an index used in Spain as a reference for granting allowances, scholarships, grants and the unemployment allowance, among others. It can be calculated here: Link opens in new windowhttp://www.iprem.com.es/

The winning party can obtain reimbursement of the litigation costs if the other party is ordered to pay costs.

Translation and interpretation costs

Case study

Translation

Interpretation

When and under which conditions is it necessary?

Approximate cost

When and under which conditions is it necessary?

Approximate cost

Case A

Case B

All foreign public or private documents that may be required under conditions laid down by law (translation by an officially recognised sworn translator)

Translators set their own rates.

Interpreters for the proceedings where this proves necessary.

Interpreters set their own rates.

If the interpreter is requested by the court itself, no payment is made.

Last update: 08/11/2019

The national language version of this page is maintained by the respective Member State. The translations have been done by the European Commission service. Possible changes introduced in the original by the competent national authority may not be yet reflected in the translations. The European Commission accepts no responsibility or liability whatsoever with regard to any information or data contained or referred to in this document. Please refer to the legal notice to see copyright rules for the Member State responsible for this page.

Case study 4 - commercial law - contract - Spain

In this case study on commercial law – contracts — Member States were asked to advise the seller on litigation costs in the following situations:

Case A – National situation: A company delivers goods worth €20 000. The buyer does not pay the seller because it considers that the goods do not conform to what was agreed.

The seller decides to sue to obtain the full payment of the price.

Case B – Transnational situation: A company whose head office is located in Member State B delivers goods worth €20 000 to a buyer in Member State A. The contract is subject to Member State B’s law and written in Member State B’s language. The buyer located in Member State A has not paid the seller because it considers that the goods do not conform to what was agreed. The seller decides to sue in Member State A to obtain full payment of the price, as provided under the contract with the buyer.

Costs in Spain

Costs for court, appeals and alternative dispute resolution

Case study

Court

Appeals

Alternative dispute resolution

Initial costs

General costs

Other costs

Initial costs

General costs

Other costs

Is this option open for this type of case?

Costs

Case A

In principle, in the order for payment procedure laid down in Articles 812 et seq. of the Code of Civil Procedure (LEC) a lawyer would not be needed to file the first statement of claim, whatever the amount of the claim.

In proceedings for a full judgment, a lawyer and a legal representative are required for claims exceeding €2 000.

If the debtor contests the claim in an order for payment procedure, a lawyer and legal representative are required if the amount of the claim exceeds that laid down in the Code of Civil Procedure (currently €2 000).

A fee is also payable which varies according to the type of procedure and the amount of the claim, provided the claim exceeds €2 000, unless the applicant is entitled to legal aid under Law 1/1996 on legal aid.

These are the general costs of proceedings. They are payable by a party which has had all its claims dismissed (Article 394(1) of the Code of Civil Procedure).

Offers of evidence.

Witness compensation.

Expert opinions.

If the debtor does not contest the claim, there are practically no costs involved in the proceeding. If the debtor contests the claim the general rules apply, i.e. the party lodging an appeal must pay a fee and make a prior deposit, unless entitled to legal aid.

The same rule applies as at first instance.

The same rule applies as at first instance.

The parties may reach agreement on the amount owed without the intervention of a third party, in which case the agreement must be approved by the court, and they may reach a settlement through mediation services even if the proceeding has begun. Law 5/2012 of 6 July 2012 on mediation in civil and commercial matters incorporates into Spanish law Directive 2008/52/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 21 May 2008. This Law lays down a minimum framework for mediation without prejudice to the provisions approved by the Autonomous Communities.
Under this Law, during the preliminary hearing the parties may be informed of the possibility of using mediation services to try and resolve the dispute. Depending on the nature of the case, the court may ask the parties to try and reach an agreement to end the proceeding. The parties may also ask for the proceeding to be stayed under Article 19(4) so that they can avail themselves of mediation or arbitration.

If an agreement is reached, 60% of the court fee is reimbursed.
Mediation provided by the court is usually free of charge.
Where mediation is not provided by the court, the parties are free to avail themselves of a mediator and to pay whatever fees are agreed upon. Under Law 5/2012, whether or not the mediation leads to an agreement, the mediation costs are shared equally between the parties unless otherwise agreed.

Case B

The same as for the previous case

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Costs for lawyers, bailiffs and experts

Case study

Lawyers

Bailiffs

Experts

Is representation compulsory?

Costs

Is representation compulsory?

Pre-judgment costs

Post-judgment costs

Is use compulsory?

Costs

Case A

The order for payment procedure is not used unless the debtor contests the claim.
For claims exceeding €2 000, representation is compulsory in proceedings for a full judgment, or in the order for payment procedure if the debtor contests the claim. In these cases the parties must be assisted by a lawyer and represented by a legal representative (Article 31 of the Code of Civil Procedure).

They vary according to the amount and procedures involved.

There is no representation.

No, but the use of experts is recommended in certain cases and is paid for by the party requesting it.

They vary according to the scope and subject of the expert opinion to be issued.

Case B

The same as for the previous case

Idem

Idem

Idem

Costs for witness compensation, deposit or guarantee and other relevant costs.

Case study

Witness compensation

Pledges or security

Are witnesses compensated?

Costs

Does this exist? When and how is it used?

Costs

Case A

Witnesses are entitled to claim for losses incurred in attending hearings from the party that has called them (Article 375(1) of the Code of Civil Procedure).

Costs are set by the Court Clerk and according to the witness's claim (travel expenses and subsistence, etc.), which must be duly documented.

No prior pledge or security has to be lodged. Security is required only for appeals against certain decisions.

They vary according to the decision appealed. Maybe between €25 and €50.

Case B

The same as for the previous case

Idem

Costs for legal aid and other reimbursement

Case study

Legal aid

Reimbursements

When and under what conditions is it applicable?

When is the support total?

Conditions:

Can the winning party obtain reimbursement of litigation costs?

When and under what conditions is it applicable?

When is the support total?

Conditions:

Case A

It applies to persons who can prove that they have insufficient finances to institute legal proceedings (including fees of lawyer, legal representative and expert).

The Legal Aid Commission determines the services for which legal aid can be granted. Aid may be requested for just one of the services provided for in the Law (e.g. to cover the court fee).

Lack of financial means is said to exist where the individual can demonstrate that his or her resources and income, calculated annually, from all sources and per family unit, do not exceed double the Public Index of Income (IPREM) in effect at the time of the application.

Generally all or most of the lawyer's fees, provided they do not exceed one third of the amount of the claim, legal representative's fees and advances on these fees, and experts' fees, as the case may be, can be reimbursed after assessment of the costs.

When there is an order to pay costs to the applicant (Article 394 of the Code of Civil Procedure), following assessment of the costs by the Court Clerk.

Order to pay costs to the other party.

Case B

The same as for the previous case.

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Costs of interpretation and translation

Case

study

Translation

Interpretation

When and under what conditions is it necessary?

What are the approximate costs?

When and under what conditions is it necessary?

What are the approximate costs?

Case A

Documents submitted in a language other than Spanish (or, where applicable, the language of the Autonomous Community where the case is being heard) must be accompanied by a translation. The document can be translated privately. If one of the parties challenges that translation on the grounds that it is not accurate, giving reasons for this claim, the Court Clerk will order an official translation to be made of the disputed part of the document at the expense of the party which submitted it. If the official translation is substantially identical to the private translation, the costs must be paid by the party who challenged the translation.

They vary according to the subject‑matter to be translated.

When a person who does not speak Spanish or, as the case may be, the other official language of the Autonomous Community in which the proceeding is held, has to be questioned, to make a statement or to be notified of a court decision, any person who speaks the language in question and who has sworn or promised to translate accurately may be appointed as interpreter.

The costs depend on whether or not a professional interpreter is used.

Case B

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Last update: 08/11/2019

The national language version of this page is maintained by the respective Member State. The translations have been done by the European Commission service. Possible changes introduced in the original by the competent national authority may not be yet reflected in the translations. The European Commission accepts no responsibility or liability whatsoever with regard to any information or data contained or referred to in this document. Please refer to the legal notice to see copyright rules for the Member State responsible for this page.

Case study 5 - commercial law - responsibility - Spain

In this case study on commercial law – liability – Member States were asked to advise the customer on litigation costs in the following situations:

Case A – National situation: A manufacturer of heating equipment delivers a boiler to a plumber. The plumber sells the boiler to a customer and installs it in the customer’s house. The house catches fire shortly afterwards. Each one of the parties involved (manufacturer of heating equipment, plumber, final customer) is insured. The origin of the fire is contested. Nobody wants to compensate the customer.

The customer decides to bring proceedings to obtain full compensation from the heating manufacturer, the plumber and the insurance companies.

Case B – Transnational situation: A manufacturer of heating equipment in Member State B delivers a boiler to a plumber in Member State C. The plumber sells the boiler to a customer and installs it in the customer’s house in Member State A. The house catches fire shortly afterwards. Each one of the parties involved (manufacturer of heating equipment, plumber, final customer) is insured by an insurance company in that party’s own Member State. The origin of the fire is contested. Nobody wants to compensate the customer.

The customer decides to bring proceedings in Member State A to obtain full compensation from the heating manufacturer, the plumber and the insurance company in Member State A.

Costs in Spain

Costs for courts, appeals and alternative dispute resolution

Case study

Court

Appeals

Alternative dispute resolution

Initial costs

General costs

Other costs

Initial costs

General costs

Other costs

Is this option open for this type of case?

Case A

Initial costs: Advances paid to the party’s lawyer (abogado) or legal representative (procurador), and in general payment of fees depending on the type of proceeding and the amount claimed, provided that it exceeds €2 000, unless the party is entitled to legal aid under Law 1/1996 on legal aid.

These are the general costs of the proceedings. They are payable by a party which has had all its claims dismissed (Art. 394(1) of the Code of Civil Procedure).

Offers of evidence:

- Compensation for witnesses

- Expert opinions

The party lodging an appeal must make a prior deposit, unless entitled to legal aid.

The same rule applies as at first instance.

The same rule applies as at first instance.

The parties may reach agreement on the amount owed without the intervention of a third party, in which case the agreement must be approved by the court, and they may reach a settlement by means of mediation even if the proceeding has begun.

Case B

The same as for the previous case

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Idem

Costs for lawyers, bailiffs and experts

Case study

Lawyers

Bailiffs

Experts

Is representation compulsory?

Costs

Is representation compulsory?

Is use compulsory?

Case A

When the amount claimed exceeds €2 000, the parties must be assisted by a lawyer and represented by a legal representative (Art. 31 of the Code of Civil Procedure).

Vary depending on the amount of the claim and the type of proceedings.

No representation of the parties.

The use of experts is advisable (valuation of loss); an expert opinion is paid for by the party requesting it.

Case B

The same as in the previous case

Idem

Idem

Idem

Costs for witness compensation, pledge or security and other relevant fees

Case study

Compensation for witnesses

Pledge or security

Are witnesses compensated?

Costs

Does this exist and when and how is it used?

Case A

Witnesses are entitled to obtain compensation from the party calling them for losses caused by their appearance in court (Art. 375(1) Code of Civil Procedure).

No prior pledge or security has to be lodged.

Case B

The same as in the previous case

Idem

Costs for legal aid and other reimbursements

Case study

Legal Aid

Reimbursement

When and under which conditions does it apply?

When is full aid given?

Conditions

Can the winning party obtain reimbursement of the litigation costs?

Case A

It applies to persons who can prove that they have insufficient finances to institute legal proceedings (for example for a lawyer and legal representative).

Lack of financial means is said to exist where the individual can demonstrate that his or her resources and income, calculated annually from all sources and per family unit, do not exceed double the Public Index of Income (IPREM) in effect at the time of the application.

This will depend on the agreement concluded with the lawyer, if any. Generally speaking, a considerable part or indeed all of the lawyer’s fee will be refunded, provided that this does not exceed one third of the amount of the claim. Fees and advance payments to the party’s legal representative and expert’s fees (where applicable) can be reimbursed after assessment of the costs.

Case B

The same as for the previous case

Idem

Idem

Translation and interpretation costs

Case study

Translation

Interpretation

When and under which conditions is it necessary?

Approximate costs?

When and under which conditions is it necessary?

Approximate costs

Case A

Documents submitted in a language other than Spanish (or, where applicable, the language of the Autonomous Community where the case is being heard) must be accompanied by a translation. The document can be translated privately; if one of the parties challenges that translation on the grounds that it is not accurate, giving reasons for this claim, the Court Clerk will order an official translation to be made of the disputed part of the document at the expense of the party which submitted it. If the official translation is substantially identical to the private translation, the costs must be paid by the party who challenged the translation.

Variable

When a person must take part in proceedings to be questioned, to make a statement or to be notified personally of a decision, and he/she does not know Spanish or, where appropriate, the other official language of the Autonomous Community where the case is being heard, any person who speaks the language in question and who has sworn or promised to translate accurately may be appointed as interpreter.

Case B

Idem

Idem

Difficult to determine in advance.

Last update: 08/11/2019

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