Bankruptcy proceedings for Aifos

According to the Spanish newspaper ‘El Pais’ the Spanish developer Aifos has been forced into administration proceedings by creditors.

It appears that 2 suppliers who are owed just under 400,000 Euros by Aifos, asked the courts in Malaga to put the company into administration, and the court has agreed to start proceedings.

If the courts decide to put Aifos into administration, people that have bought Aifos off-plan properties that still have to complete will have to the growing list of creditors trying to get their money back from Aifos.
In a previous article (How the mighty have fallen) Gestión de Obras y Reformas started proceedings against Aifos, but did not supply enough evidence to the courts

If you have bought an Aifos property, contact you lawyer now. As an unsolicited creditor you will not be given priority in regards to returning of funds, so the sooner you start, the better you chances will be in at least getting you original investment back.

On a more positive note to you creditors, Aifos owns several hotels in Marbella, these assets would be sold to help pay all outstanding debts.

If anyone who reads this is has bought an Aifos off-plan and is trying to get their money back please leave a comment to help others in a similar situation.

Good Luck
Andrew Belles

UPDATE ARTICLE: Taking AIFOS to court

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93 Responses to “Bankruptcy proceedings for Aifos”

  1. gary says:

    Many thanks Coombsey,
    Court date is set for June 11 2009, solicitor is Manuel Hortelano, lets hope we get the decision.

  2. Andrew says:

    Looks like two hotels in Marbella belonging Aifos have been forced into administration by creditors. They are the Guadalpín Banús and the Guadalpín Marbella.

  3. LA, California says:

    I received paperwork 3 weeks ago to record the sale on a property I reserved many years ago in Las Brisas Malaga. I live in the US and could not make the trip on time. I am not even sure Aifos got the full licenses to complete the transfer. Does anyone involved with this development? What do you think my best option is at this time, sign or go to court?
    Could you recommend a lawye for me?
    Thanks

  4. Greeny says:

    Hi Andrew

    I’ve been keeping an eye on the posts to date and wonder whether anyone has any further information regarding Aifos’ current situation, especially with regard to Puerto Sol? Still seriously considering not taking ownership, particularly in view of current climate but still no word from our Solicitors!! Can anyone recommend any lawyers that have been able to get to grips with Aifos yet?!

  5. leslie says:

    Hi

    We purchased off plan 5 years ago 2 bedroom apartment Puerto Sol. We were told bvba bank were financing to complete by June. As yet we have not heard anymore. We are going out there on holiday on 30th June and hope to find out more and see for ourslves if complete. Will give u an update when we return.

  6. Sue & Harry says:

    We have paid a large reservation/deposit on an apartment at the Hippodromo almost 6yrs ago and it’s still awaiting a habitation licence?? We are keen to get involved with supporting others and ourselves in getting some if not all our money back. We are in the area in Spain in August if anybody wants to meet up to discuss.

    Regards

  7. Jimbo says:

    Just to reply to leslie, who is probably still in Almeria, and Greeny. The Puerto Sol development is almost complete, the electricity was being set up while I was there the other week and the letter boxes are in place with room numbers etc. Nobody was in the Aifos portocabin (which had dead plants etc. so looks like nobody is using the local office any more). I have emailed Julie Patterson in Aifos’ Dublin office to request more info regarding completion. I will update once I get a reply.

  8. Andrew says:

    Good idea Sue & Harry! a united front will offer all of you more options when going after the developer

  9. Andrew says:

    Jimbo, Greenie, etc…

    Ask for all information in writing. A paper trail will aid you down the line should you have to take any legal action

  10. Ian&Frances Mackay says:

    We also bought 2 apts off plan on Las Caballerizas Aifos Hipodromo site in Mijas 6 yrs ago.
    Lawbirds lawyers acting for us.
    Went to the courts in Malaga( June) Aifos demanded we attend,and would be infront of the judge,then as about to enter court,their lawyers said we would not now be required.This sums up Aifos,absolute sh*ts!
    A week later informed by lawyers we had won the case for breach of contract,and awarded 91,387 euro,but no compansation,not fussed about that, as just want our monies ,refunded.
    It cost us £6000+ £1,300 for embargo fees for the 2 apts.
    What are the chances of us receiving this judgement off Aifos?
    I know they are bound to appeal.
    Many thanks if you can help.
    By the way,great site,wish I had found it earlier,as this whole episode has caused us much heartache.
    Hope that our good news is of help to fellow Aifos haters.

  11. gary says:

    Hi Ian/Frances
    I purchased on the L Caballerizas II off plan.
    Went to court in June but awaiting decision.
    As you have paid for embargo does that put a stop on Aifos one of Aifos accounts ?
    Not sure how that works ?

  12. hello Gary.
    The embargo makes you a preferential creditor for existing Aifos properties,which could be sold to raise capital for existing preferential creditors.If you havent aquired an embargo, you go to the back of the queue if Aifos go t*ts up…….I think ! Hope this helps you.

  13. Andrew says:

    Hi Ian&Frances Mackay,

    Thank you for the input. Quite clearly the embargo offers you an extra level of protection. Especially with Aifos’s uncertain future.
    I think more than likely Aifos will try to appeal, at least if they feel they have the chance of overturning the previous decision. If your lawyers presented a strong case, Aifos will more than likely not want the extra cost of an appeal if they know they cannot win. Especially with Caballerizas which I beleive they never had permission for.
    And for what its worth, if when you bought you converted sterling to euros, you probably transfer of 60,000GBP (more or less). With the exchange rate as it is that 91,000€ is worth closer too 80,000GBP. Every little bit helps

    Andrew

  14. john francis says:

    Hello all – fellow Aifos hater here !!

    We have “won” our case against Aifos for their taking of our money and non building of our apartment on Hacienda Marina. They simlply ignore the court and don’t pay up. They really are the most despicable dreadful scumbags you could ever come across.

    We are now in the proess of getting the embargboed property to auction whihc we are informed will take at least another year.

  15. Andrew says:

    Hi John Francis,

    I started reading your post and was going to give you a big congratulations!
    But i realise it is a bit empty without you getting you money back.
    For what it is worth, here is an article about how properties are repossessed and put to auction.
    Have hope it can take alot less than a year
    Best of Luck
    Andrew

    http://blog.arribaestates.com/2009/01/24/bank-repossessions-spain/

  16. Andrew says:

    JUST IN
    Source: http://www.spanishpropertyinsight.com/buff/2009/07/aifos-seeks-protection-from-its-creditors/

    “The notorious Spanish developer Aifos has been forced to seek protection from its creditors, the Spanish press reports today. This is the first step of proceedings that often lead to bankruptcy and liquidation.
    With debts of around 1 billion Euros and 2,000 creditors, Aifos has gone into voluntary administration with some 5,000 requests for payment hanging over it, reports the Spanish news website eleconomista.es.
    Aifos claims it has taken this step to “guarantee the construction of 3,000 homes committed to clients and delivery in the shortest time possible.” Companies like Aifos usually say something along these lines at this stage, but it is just waffle.
    “Court administration will enable the group to restructure its debt to cope with the real estate crisis, as well as guarantee the continued activity of the company, the honouring of contracts with others, and safeguarding the jobs of its workers,” goes the Aifos statement. No doubt this pious statement made the Aifos management good about themselves. Aifos’s owners and top management have been implicated in corruption scandals and are infamous for their business practices.”

  17. carl says:

    My lawyer has told me they are searching a register of assetts? for aifos
    we have been to court and we have an enforcement order
    my lawyer has been some time now looking for assetts is there such a thing as land registry in spain would that not list who owns what

  18. gary says:

    Hi

    I have just been advised that I have won my court battle with Aifos + been awarded my refund plus interest + court costs.
    How do I now go about recovering this money ?

  19. Coombsey says:

    Hi Gary, unfortunately although you have had good news you still have a long battle ahead. I received the same news as you did in October 2008. Aifos appealed the judgement, they always do, as this means the case cannot go any further until the appeal has been heard and we all know how slow the Spanish courts are. The appeal paperwork should have been submitted in June but Aifos ‘forgot’ to submit it – or did they not wish to throw more money at a lost case? You would think this makes things simple, but no, we are still waiting for the court to reply to our enforcement of the judgement and my lawyer has advised this is unlikely to happen before the courts close for August. We also have to wait for Aifos to submit title deeds to the court so that we can force the sale of one of their properties at auction – i’m sure they will be very co-operative about doing that! We also have to wait for documentation from the Spanish Land Registry who are about as quick as the courts. In the meantime Aifos continue to hold onto my money and ignore the courts judgement to pay us.

    So, I think your situation is similar to mine, you need to continue to pursue your claim in court and hope that they are still trading when the courts finally allow you to force a property to auction.

    We were delighted when we reached the stage that you are at but looking back it seems somewhat of a hollow victory since the courts are too busy to be able to enforce anything. Sorry I can’t be more positive for you Gary but as i’m sure any other fellow Aifos victim will tell you, there is a long battle ahead of you still.

    Best of luck with your case.

    Justin

  20. karen says:

    hi im in the same position as many of you . we started paying deposits in 2003 for cortijo de torreblanca. should of been completed in 2005 ( what a joke) still not done ! we took aifos to court last year and won case. they appealed and we won that and still theyve not paid us a penny. we’ve started going down the embargo route but now they have gone bankrupt !! its cost us over 8000 euro so far in lawyers fees etc ! does that sound about right ? 8000? have i thrown away good money after bad ? will i ever get my deposit back ?
    i think aifos lot should be locked up for what they have done to everyone concerned . theyve been found guilty in court but get away by not paying . surely thats criminal .
    lets just hope we all have a happy ending !
    KAREN

  21. Coombsey says:

    Hi Karen, sounds like there are quite a few of us who will be fighting over whats left after the Spanish government have collected their taxes and National Insurance that’s overdue and the banks have staked their claims at the top of the creditors list. My lawyer hasn’t actually said we won’t get anything back but has painted a very bleak picture so I think our deposits may be gone. They aren’t however ‘bankrupt’ yet as you say because the court has not officially announced it – although all reports confirm that they will do.

    With regards to your mention that what they have done is criminal, I totally agree, and it seems others do as well – have you seen this news article? http://www.typicallyspanish.com/news/publish/article_22532.shtml

    It seems the directors are being pursued by people like us who have got together and presented a criminal case against Aifos to try to get their deposits returned. I have asked my lawyer to comment on this as to whether it is worth trying to get together another group to take similar action, although it may be too late.

    It’s also criminal that the Spanish legal system can be allowed to take so long to provide justice, or injustice as the case may now be. It’s also criminal that a hotel valued at 39 million Euros can be sold to Sir Alan Sugar for a reported 3 million Euros. With property being sold for those prices we have no chance of getting any money back.

    We now have to decide whether or not to pay approx another £1000 Euros for our lawyer to fight our case on the creditors list and possibly get nothing at the end. I’m not sure that after the amount of legal fees I have already paid I should have to pay more and I would be interested to hear if any other lawyers are asking for further funds to pursue cases if Aifos go into bankruptcy.

    Justin

  22. karen says:

    hi justin thanks for the reply thread. i’ll be speaking with my lawyer tomorrow and let u know our prospects etc. i dont fancy throwing away another 1000 euro away tho. lost so much already
    karen

  23. Jill Ge says:

    Hello all suffering AIFOS buyers

    Andrew, can you give me your advice on this:

    I successfully won my court case against AIFOS in November 2008, AIFOS did not appeal, I sent Lawbird e900 to enable them to put my name on AIFOS property to be sold to realise my money. Now Lawbird was e1100 to put my name on the list of creditors as AIFOS is in vol administration. I have asked Lawbird to explain why I am not already on the list of creditors, but they say this is ‘a new procedure’.
    I have received no correspondence from anybody about a list and apparently the list closed on 20th September 09.
    Sorry for the rant, I’m getting really, really angry about all this.
    Thanks for any help you can give

    Jill

  24. Hi Jill Ge
    It does seem like alot of money. I was talking to someone today and via another agency he was informed that a lawyer was requesting 400 euros. But this seemed strange to me that it was through an agency and not direct with the lawyer.

    I can only recommend you contact several of the lawyers that have been mentioned and see what they would quote. Or maybe someone who has posted here can give the figures on what they have paid.

  25. afectado aifos says:

    el coste aproximado para comunicar los creditos es de unos 300 euros, sin embargo se puede hacer sin abogado. uno mismo puede redactar el escrito.

  26. Gracias ‘afectado aifos’

    Translation:
    The cost to go on the list as an aifos creditor is 300€. This can be done without the aid of a lawyer.
    —-

  27. Jill Ge says:

    Hi Andrew

    Thanks for the info. I’m in 2 minds whether to try and register myself as a creditor or go through Lawbird as they have represented me all along this sad, sorry path.

    It’s so difficult – being in two countries and all!

    Thanks again

    Jill

  28. Jill Ge says:

    Hi Andrew

    This is a PS to my previous.

    Lawbird are charging e300 for registering as a creditor and e700 for ‘lawyers fees’. I would appreciate any advice from anybody on how I go about joining the creditors list without getting lawyers involved. Time is really tight now and I have to make a decision.

    Thanks to all

    Jill

  29. Hi Jill Ge,

    as a rule, I would question the 700€ as in most cases it would not be a lawyer going to register you as a creditor but one of the staff members. As lawyers time is expensive, so I would understand the charge, but not for one of the underlings.

    I would have also assumed that the lawyer would charge a flat fee for all the legal work and simply inform you of any additional charges, in this case the 300€ that need to be paid.

    At the end of the day there are many lawyers out there who can offer you the same service.

    Talk to them, see if your lawyers can come to some sort of compromise.

    Regards
    Andrew

  30. Providenza says:

    Hi Andrew, just found out, what the hell do we do now, my partner invested over 40,000euros in an apartment at the Hipodromo (Alazan apartments) Trying to find out who Ash y Poplar are. They seem to be the recepients of his money. Having spoken to Lawbird solicitors it seems highly unlikely to retrieve any money. It could take approximately 2 – 5 years and the chances are very slim. There must be something that could be done collectively

  31. Jill Ge says:

    Hello Andrew

    Thanks for your message

    Lawbird will not reduce their costs to join the creditors list, but they did say I could pay in 2 payments. They were very defensive as to why the cost is so high, but I have paid them as I already have an embargo against AIFOS and hopefully I just might get some of my money back.

    Good luck to everybody who finds themselves in this unholy mess. Let’s hope that justice prevails.

    Jill

  32. PA HOLT says:

    I have recieved papers from Aifos today,as a creditor I can submit my claim into the Mercantile Court No.1 in Malaga by 30-9-009.
    It must all be done in Spanish,I think with a
    interpreter I can do it myself, I resent lining
    another solicitor´s pocket,especially as there
    is a good chance that I will recieve nada.

  33. PA HOLT says:

    I should have said that the judge has appointed
    an abagado from Landwell,Pricewaterhouse
    Coopers,in Malaga,they have issued a phone
    no. 952 345 400.I phoned and spoke to a very
    nice English speaking young woman who said
    told me how to go about submitting my claim.

  34. Jill Ge says:

    Thanks for the info – always welcome.

    I have resolved not to pay any more money to lawyers for this AIFOS mess.

    I have now had to sell my home in order to pay off the mortgage I took out to pay for the non existent apartment.

    I have received nothing in writing about this AIFOS administration. Should I have?

    Good luck

    Jill

  35. ELS (lawyers firm) has been kind enough to supply me with an article regarding taking Aifos to court.
    Taking aifos to Court

  36. I know several of you are at the end of your tether, in regards to everything you have been through. These lawyers have been kind enough to offer this information, and I was quite impressed by their no-nonsense approach. I believe they will also be happy to answer any questions you might have about the article.

    Regards
    Andrew

  37. john Roberts says:

    I have paid £1000.00 to my estate agent who have said, that is the initial payment to regiister as a crediter and the cost of taking on a lawyer .The lawer they suggest is working for a no win no fee basis,but reccomends I persue my money back from the person I purchased the property off as i purchased the property as a resale.(Aifos is the developer)
    He is now mentioning staged payments and is still talking about a no win no fee basis does this sound a bit dodgey.nte

  38. Hi John,

    I unfortunately only have limited knowledge about all of this. But as I understand it, you have to sue the person you bought from and they can sue the person he or she bought from.

    The stage payments might refer to the legal costs (court fees, etc…) that need to be paid?
    In either case you can request a full breakdown of the costs.

  39. Maria Elena says:

    Hello, URGENT – can anyone help?

    I am trying to find the insurance company that Aifos use for our development in Angel de Miraflores, if anyone can help please email me as soon as possible. thank you.

  40. gary says:

    does anyone have any updates on the Aifos situation ?
    I won my case but do not know if I will receive anything back from them ?

  41. gary says:

    does anyone have any updates on the Aifos situation ?
    I won my case but do not know if I will receive anything back from them ?

  42. Avery says:

    I’m thinking of going bankrupt but what would the long-term issues be if I tried to get a mortgage eight years. I’m balancing up wether a short term gain would be long term pain. I owe about 30 thousand on my cards and I only rent my apartment so for the short term it would be great. What I’m worried about is if I get married in the future it would quit me getting a loan. What’s the length of time that it would take to be off your records – if at all – that you’ve been bankrupt. Thanks for all your help – it will be appreciated.

  43. Dear Aifos owners,

    I have been recently contacted by a gentleman who owns an unfinished aifos property (Cortijo de Torreblanca) here in Fuengirola. It has been confirmed that a bank has taken it over and is going to complete the project.
    If you own in this complex and have not been contacted, I would suggest contacting you legal representatives.

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