Why might I want a power of attorney?
As soon as you have found the right property for you in Spain, you will want to get things moving to make it your own as quickly as possible. Buying a property in Spain is a complicated process involving lots of paperwork to be signed before final completion at the notary’s office. This can soon become impractical and stressful, even more so if you are not based locally. This is where a power of attorney comes in handy.
What is a power of attorney?
A power of attorney is a legal document that must be signed in front of a notary in which you nominate a trustworthy person of your choice to act on your behalf in certain transactions. It means the legal process of purchasing a property in Spain can continue without you being present. A further upside is that the power of attorney does not have to be obtained in Spain, you can also get it in your home country. If you want to save yourself a trip to Spain, you can obtain the power of attorney at home by visiting either the Spanish Embassy or a public notary local to you. Following this step, the power of attorney must be stamped with the Apostille of the Hague by the Foreign Office, thus making it valid.
What is the Apostille of the Hague?
Good question! The Apostille stamp forms part of a standardised legalisation procedure valid between certain countries. It stems from an agreement made as part of The Hague Convention of 1961. Thanks to this international treaty, documents stamped with the Apostille are guaranteed as legal and valid, thus allowing them to be transferred across borders and transactions to take place from abroad.
The Next Step: A Sworn Translation
After you have had the power of attorney stamped with the seal of the Apostle of the Hague, and if the power of attorney is in English, you only have one step left: have it translated into Spanish. It is essential that this is done by a sworn translator as they are specifically qualified for translating legal documents. They will stamp and sign their translation as proof of its accuracy. Once your chosen representative has the power of attorney, they can take care of all of the steps of the property purchase on your behalf. Much less hassle for you!
How do I choose the right representative?
It is clear that having a power of attorney can be a lifesaver if you live far away and save you a lot of hassle in general. It might seem daunting at first to hand over so much responsibility to another person but there is no need to worry. It is usual for clear limits to be included in the power of attorney document, for example limiting the representative to acting on your behalf only in the purchase of a specific property and nothing more. Even so, you must choose your representative carefully. The norm, and by far the best option, is to choose an experienced and trustworthy official representative such as ourselves at Andalucía Lawyers. Our ample experience in buying property in Andalusia means we know what to expect, how to pre-emptively avoid or resolve any possible issues and exactly what steps need to be taken to make your chosen property your own.