I provide a Spanish-English-Spanish translation service for almost anything in the area.

Medical, Legal, Notary, Court, Public health, Administrative, Written translations via email, Mechanic, Commercial, simultaneous translations for public speaking and conferences….

I also have a emergency 24 hour service for medical and police related translations.

I also provide long distance translation with pick up and drop off servive if the hospital you need to visit far away. Forward booking is needed for this service.

Please call 617354758 to book appointment.

There is a free service provided by Google where you can get a written translation of any text. It is very unreliable but you can get a idea as to what a text is saying. The web address is the following:-

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Non Residence tax to be paid before the 31st of December.

aaaaaThis is a repeat post.

There has been a lot of publicity and questions about the tax upon owners of homes who do not live in Spain. There is some confusion as to weather this tax is included in the rates tax which it is not.

You must pay for each property:

*Local Taxes (Council Tax, IBI) these are the rates.

These taxes are paid directly to your Town Hall or via the SUMA offices. They are a form of Council Tax or property rates.

*Government taxes (Non residence tax)

Often this tax is referred to as income tax or property income tax which can lead to some confusion as it can be thought that if you don’t have an income in Spain then I don’t have to or should not have to pay it. The non resident tax it a tax for the possibility of using your property for a rental income. You have to pay it if you rent your property out or not. These taxes are paid to the Agencia Tributaria (Tax Authority- Hacienda). They are an income tax on your property. You must pay non residence tax whether you rent out your property or not.

This means that all Spanish holiday home owners should be paying at least 2 taxes. If you try to avoid these there will be a sanction levied against you which will increase the amount to be paid.

How much do I pay?

In this area it is worked out buy 1.1% of the rateable value, then 24% of that amount.

You can find the rateable value on the rates bill; it is normally quite lower than what was paid for the property when purchased.

If the rateable value of your home is 70,000€ then 1.1% is 770€ 24% of that amount is 184.8€

The non residence tax is paid by filling in a modelo 210 tax form which can be down loaded from the internet here

The form once filled in, needs to be taken to the bank, pay the tax.

If you are officially resident inSpainyou do not have to pay this tax and you do not need a fiscal representative.

The form is quite complicated if you do not understand Spanish (and even if you do). You can appoint a fiscal representative (which is a requirement) who can be anyone that can fill the forms in for you and make the payment on your behalf. A Fiscal Representative must be resident inSpain. The tax authorities will send all correspondence relating to your tax affairs inSpaindirectly to your Fiscal Representative. Appointing a Fiscal Representative will ensure that the Spanish tax authorities has a point of contact, so that unnecessary debts or fines can be avoided. The tax office will not send notifications outside ofSpain.

For the individual owner, appointment of a Fiscal Representative is relatively straightforward, requiring the completion of a written Authority nominating the Fiscal Representative and payment of the required fee.

The Spanish Tax Authority have sent out letters to over 300,000 owners of Spanish property who have not made a Spanish tax declaration in 2007, 2008 and 2009.

The letter is notification that non-residents who do not make the annual declaration should rectify this in order to avoid further investigation taking place.

Non-residents should be aware that letters will be delivered to their property in Spainand that the deadline for non-resident tax declarations is December 31st .So the tax for 2011 needs to be paid by 31 st of December 2012. If the tax is not paid by the deadline then there will a sanction.

Solicitors normally offer a service of fiscal representation and can cost anything from 100€ to 175€ per person or more. If you would like a cheaper option then please contact me on

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The planning department estimate at least two million euro’s loss to the treasurey of Orihuela caused by the first 208 illegal homes detected in the north of Orihuela.



The planning councilor, Antonio Zapata, appeared today to present the first results of the flyover  that a company is performing over the municipality of Orihuela in order to carry out a the plan of regularization of illegal dwellings that give a solution all these houses and their neighbors. After scrutinizing a small portion of land in the north and 208 unlicensed properties were found that are not registered at the rates office therefore, do not pay property tax. Mr. Zapata has estimated that the loss caused to the town hall by the slackness of the Popular party is between two and six million euro’s which has caused  this urban disaster.

According to the Mayor, the 208 cases for regularization of illegal construction have been identified, including catastral ownership, plot type and construction, property data, if they have been licensed or sanctioned.  Mr. Zapata has declared that between the construction tax and planning discipline sanctions, of these 208 cases the town hall would have been able to raise from at least 1.96 and as much as  of 6.17 million euro’s, according to the acceptance of the claims of the owners.

Regulation will cost between 4000 and 8000 euros.

Because of new urban legislative changes announced by the Regional Territory Minister, Bonig Isabel, who has proposed the creation of an agency to solve the problem of illegal housing, and since the General Urban Plan of Orihuela is still pending & shall be drawn taking into account the results of regularization. Mr. Zapata has announced that “we have volunteered ourselves to be a pilot municipality” in this subject. In any case, it has also been assured, that the Department plans to open a office of regularization to property owners who want to benefit from the process 6 that they may voluntarily provide all their documentation to the planning office. In fact, there are 19 owners of a group of properties in the municipality who have initiated this voluntary procedure.


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Exporting your Spanish car to the U.K.

A number of my clients have gone back to the U.K. and northern Europe and then sold their Spanish cars and or had them registered with U.K. plates. Then, to the surprise of all (or not) a road tax bill has continued to be issued against the car and if it was not paid then monies have been forcibly (embargo) removed from Spanish bank accounts to cover the supposed debt.

It is against European Union ruling that a car can be taxed in two member states but if the car has not been properly decommissioned in Spain then it will continue to be taxed until the proper decommissioning process has been completed. One of my clients after selling her Spanish car in the north of Europe had all the paperwork send to the DGT in Alicante but nothing happened and they continued to take the road tax from her account.

This is what the traffic office requires :-

-A copy of the current road tax bill paid and up to date.

-The decommissioning from which can be downloaded from the DGT website at this link

-The original car documents & photocopy.

-The original NIE and photocopy

-The original passport and photocopy.

-Pay the 8€ fee.

All these documents must be presented and if you are not allowed to go in person they will need to be accompanied with an authorization with the person you send on your behalf.

If you can do this before you take the car out of the country then you are allowed to drive the car for two weeks in Spain in a decommissioned status (baja).If you have left the country and sold the car already then you might have some difficulties with the paperwork but it is not impossible. You will have to send your passport & NIE to Spain to be able to complete the process.

Once the correct documentation is presented then the process is immediate & you will no longer be charged car tax.

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British driving licence and Residence in Spain

There seems to be a lot of conflicting advice about if you need to change your U.K. driving licence for a Spanish Licence.

If you are not a resident in Spain you do not need to change your driving licence but if you are a resident you have to change your licence to a Spanish one within a 6 month period of obtaining Spanish residence. If you do not do this and continue driving using your U.K. or any other non Spanish Licence (non European driving licences have a different ruling), if you get stopped by the police then you will get a fine, have your licence confiscated etc.

The process of changing your driving licence is quite simple.


–          Have official residence in Spain.

–          Be over 18 years old

–          The U.K. / European driving licence must not have been obtained while you were a Spanish resident.


  1. Official application form      obtained from the Ministry of traffic (DGT) office or on the web page you will also be required to sign      a declaration that you have not been disqualified from driving and that      you do not own any other non Spanish driving licences.
  2. You will be required to pay      26.60€ fee.
  3. Accreditation of identity

-Passport & photocopy

-Residency certificate that is has not been cancelled & photocopy

  1. Your U.K. or European Driving licence      and photocopy of both sides and the counterpart with a photocopy.
  2. A passport size photo that has      a white background.
  3. Photo card which can only be      obtained at the Ministry of traffic office in person in by a representative.
  4. If you are of retirement age      and your licence has come to its end then you will need a medical      certificate in an accredited clinic (Centro Medico Y Fisioterapia). They will test your reflexes,      eyesight, & hearing. You will be asked about illnesses &      medication. You will obtain a certificate to be taken to the traffic      office. This certificate should not cost you more than 20€. You may need a      translator if you do not speak Spanish.

If you do not want to go to the traffic office in person and would rather send a representative then the representative will need to be authorized in writing with your signature on the authorization.

All this documentation is in Spanish without any translation so you may need assistance to fill it all in.

Once all the paperwork is completed then you need to go to the traffic office which is open from 8.30am to 2.30pm in Alicante Monday to Thursday & from 8.30am to 1.30pm. From 8.30am to 3pm Monday to Thursday 8.30am to 1.30pm Friday.  You will need to pay the 26.60€ fee at the casher then you will get a number and will have to wait your turn. It is important that you have all the paperwork filled in and the original driving licence, passport & residency certificate. If there is anything missing you may have to come back another day. It is best to get to the Alicante office early in the morning, 8 is a good time, there will be a lot of people queuing. This way you will be attended sooner. The Alicante office is a bit like a cattle market.

Once you have summated your paperwork you may be asked to surrender your licence strait away and given a provisional licence or covering document which will be valid for 3 months. Then your new Spanish licence will be sent to you in the post. If you are not asked to surrender your licence and counterpart then you will receive a letter to indicate that your provisional licence is ready then you will be required to surrender your licence & counterpart. You will have to go to the traffic office in person or send a representative with an authorization.  Once the Spanish Ministry of Traffic has checked with the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency in the U.K. and the Spanish Foreign office to check that all the details coincide, you will be sent your definitive Spanish driving licence.

A Spanish driving licence lasts for 10 years then needs to be renewed. If you change a U.K. licence for a Spanish on then it will only last for the amount of time you have left on your U.K. licence of that is not more than 10 years, if you have the medical test then it will last for 5 years then need renewing if you are of retirement age.

If you do not speak Spanish at all it is most likely that you will have to deal with a non English speaker at the traffic office. If you need assistance I offer a complete service to deal with this issue. Please do not hesitate to contact me on 617354758.

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Interview with the planning councillor of Orihuela.

Planning Councellor not able to give consice direction with regard to the steps to be taken in the regularization of ilegal properties.

I had the opportunity to meet with Antonio Zapata (PSPV-PSOE) with a couple of concerned property owners this last week with the purpose of clarifying some of the rumours from diverse sources. In previous official statements & publications by the planning departments intention to regularize illegal homes in the municipality (PRV) has been initiated with initially the contracting of a company to take aerial photos to see any differences since the last flyover in 2009. The fly over will bring to light any property that is not paying rates, properties that have been extended, had pools added etc which have not been registered with the rates office.

Antonio Zapata told us that in the case where there are groups of illegally built properties it was possible to contract an architect to prepare plans to indicate the changes needed to regularize the properties; pavements, changes in electrical instillations, connection to sewerage mains etc. Once the plans have been produced then the cost can be calculated to bring the infrastructure for group of properties up to the standard which will merit regularization. The regularization is for properties that are outside the general plan (PGOU) these properties have been built without the proper planning permissions and deemed illegal resulting in many difficulties for the property owners such as difficulty in getting proper supply of electricity and water also difficulty in reselling said properties. All the costs involved in regularization will have to be paid by the property owners and it is up to those who want the property regularized to initiate this process.

There was very little information that Antonio could give us because the project is still at its very early stages. He told us that he could not give any assurance that the regularization would be accepted by the Valencian Communities planning departments although they have had their backing up until now.

As of yet this information has not been publicized on the OrihuelaTown hall web site neither has it been commented on in the local press. Antonio’s comment was that this move is at a very early stage of development. Since the last publication concerning this issue the office designated to deal with the publics questions about these issues of regularization has not opened its doors as of yet. Although the time for the head of planning to deal directly with the pubic in person is between 8.30am and 10.30am, getting  appointment to discuss these issues is unlikely because there has not been any changes to comment about in resent months.

There is also the issue of the political stability of the current party at the town hall. Because of the lack of a majority vote and the instability of the coalition party there is the possibility that in the near future the existing party will be replaced and then these current issues will be re-assessed according to the new administrations criteria. Because there is no rules dictating on how to legalize properties there is the risk that some expensive steps can be taken only for these “advances” to be of no validity under a new political administration. Perhaps it would be better to wait until there is a bit more clarity with official publication about appropriate steps to be taken.

Posted in Publications by Orihuela Town Hall, Visit With the Orihuela planning councilor | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Orihuela town hall to deal with illegal properties that evade paying taxes.

This article was published in the Information news paper and on the Orihuela town hall web site on the 25th  & 30th of may 2012.

The town planning councillor of Orihuela, Antonio Zapata, presented the first of the measures within the housing regularization Plan, which consists of a series of flights over the entire municipality, to reveal the actual reality of the amount of building that has taken place outside of the planning departments management.

The flights have been contracted with a specialized company, which will confirm the physical reality and the legal status of the buildings with or without planning permission within the municipality, “between these two realities as we can see no grey areas,” said Antonio Zapata, while showing some of the aerial photographs that had advanced by the company in charge of the work showing buildings, swimming pools and even buildings of considerable size, not only outside of the towns general plan but without any cadastral (rates) registration. The Mayor added “we see they are not registered at all.”

Zapata said that there are more than 12,000 homes which are out side the planning department’s management and catastral inscription in the coastal areas alone which are not paying rates to the detriment of other citizens in the municipality.

From the start and until the flights are completed within two months or so, the mayor commented, property owners will not be able to do anything until the scheduled office is opened in Calle Miguel Hernandez, whose staff will attend to all interested and affected by this issue.

This is a way the town hall can bring into order with many illegal extensions, pool homes built without proper planning permission and those that are not contributing in paying taxes and rates for these properties. We are living in times where local authorities need every penny and Spain has been so relaxed for many years and can no longer continue as before.

The comment by the mayor that “nothing can be done” is somewhat misleading. There are a few things that can be done to avoid fines by the rates office if your property is not registered. If you register your property there is an easy process which I have covered on a previous post which you can view here.

If it is your intention to sell your property it would be convenient to have all the elements of your property reflected in the deeds. It might be the case that your pool, extensions or house are not mentioned in the deeds. If you sell property you will be asked to have these elements previously added to the deeds. This also is an easy process which is covered in a previous post which you can view here.

If you need any help or advise concerning these issues please contact me.

You are able to disscuss these issues with the plannng councellor at the twon hall of Orihuela every tuesday for 11am to 1pm. You will need a translator and must ring for a apointment on Tel.: 96 673 73 30     EXT: 21


Posted in Including extentions, pools etc in your deeds., Publications by Orihuela Town Hall, Register extentions, pools, garages etc. with rates office (Catastro)., Tax | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment