Silverpoint. Second Supreme Court ruling, nº 19/2017

STS no. 19 of 17-01-2017. Appeal no. 3064-2014, on Perpetuity, Trade Ins, Trans amount and maintenance quotas.

Sentence nº 19/2017 has been Supreme Court's second sentence and has very little to do with the previous one, number 16/17, since it doesn't deal with Club Paradiso or address to the issue of whether buyers are investors or consumers. This ruling examines a Hollywood Mirage Club contract and the main issues are: perpetuity, amounts brought from other contracts (Trade In), amounts brought from previous contracts (Trans amounts) and maintenance fees.

Regarding the first issue, perpetuity, we must remember that what the Supreme Court has declared illegal are not only contracts in perpetuity, but, as provided in Article 3 of Law 42/98, any contract signed for more than 50 years. On the other hand, Silverpoint (and other clubs) are arguing, in their Answers, that they simply haven't mentioned any deadline in their contracts, and this shouldn't mean its nullity, because the Judge can understand that if nothing is mentioned is because the legal term of 50 years must apply.

Well, the Supreme Court has stated that the mere fact of not pointing out the end date of the contract, is already enough reason to declare the contract null (see Ground of Law number TWO, last paragraph).

Regarding the second legal issue, amounts brought from previous contracts (Trade In), the Supreme Court doesn't specifically come to pronounce over it, but when, in Ground of Law THREE summarizes what sums of money are being claimed by the plaintiff, they included 18,000 euros that came from a previous contract. For this reason it is important that, if a customer is in this situation, keeps copies of these previous contracts to be able to claim the money paid together with the rest of the price reflected in the contract under discussion.

In this same Ground of Law, the Supreme Court recognizes, and take for granted, the claim on maintenance fees, in this case for 739 euros and corresponding to the year 2012, awarding it to the claimant. This is a clear sign that maintenance quotas are also claimable, although perhaps if costumers have been using their rights could be considered unfair.

Finally, this Ground of Law ends affirming that amounts brought from previous contracts, not signed with the same club, cannot be considered as advance payments, since they were in possession of the seller before the signing of the contract and in no case, did it entail a coercive measure to obtain the signature of the contract.

This is a short sentence, 4 pages, and you can find it here.