20 Mar, 2013 @ 14:24
1 min read

Embargo battle in the Axarquia

Water bill

A BRITISH expat is facing an embargo on her home over a €600 debt which is not hers.

Kritzlynn Al-Taib, 62, claims her local town hall has ordered her to pay the last six years of water bills from a restaurant she legally closed in 2006.

Al-Taib had rented the Almijara restaurant in Canillas de Albaida, in the Axarquia, for over two years before closing the restaurant due to ill health.

It was then taken over by a local family who ran it until recently.

Now the town hall is demanding the expat pay €600.11 in utility costs or face an embargo on her home and bank account.

“Of course I was legally responsible for the water when I ran the restaurant but the town hall know the contract came to an end in 2006,” she told the Olive Press.

“The mayor lives in the village, so he knows very well that this restaurant was being run by a local family for the last six years and not me.

“They must not have registered to pay their bills,” added the expat.

Al-Taib says she will not back to the demands.

“I’m digging my heels in, I’ve always paid my dues and paid my taxes here in Spain, so why should I be made to pay a debt that is not mine,” she added.

Al-Taib says she has repeatedly asked the mayor Jorge Martin Perez to look into the matter more closely.

“He told me not to occupy myself with it, it will be sorted he said,” added Al-Taib, who has until the end of the month before the embargo is placed.

The town of Canillas de Albaida hit the headlines last June when former mayor, Leovigildo Lopez, was banned from public office for seven years, narrowly escaping jail for planning crimes.


  1. Embargo . . Seems to be Spains favorite word at the moment…
    although i have now sussed this out, sold my house, put the money offshore, quick before the town hall tax it, put the cars in my sisters name, told the town hall i had left spain and now rent in the wifes maiden name.. i get no more embargos, no more requimentos from the hacienda or the town hall.. i live here self employed through the UK.. pay little social, got a green card. pay less vat and tax there…
    this place can suck the life out of you if you let it…
    if you want to live here.. then live… but dont give them nothing,,, i gave for 15 years.. and when i lost my job they said thanks.. what do you want from us… you cant have nothing… thanks for paying your social and taxes for 15 years… bye bye…

  2. Sadly this is becoming a common place experience on the part of ex-pats who attempt to establish a business in Spain….and in the current economic crisis, it is sending a very bad message out there to the many ex-pats who wish to contribute to the current economic situation here I commend the Olive Press for their tenacity and courage and I know that there are many similar stories out there. Kritzlyn Al Taib is not alone and her only crime is that she actually registered her business in line with correct procedure. The question is ….how did the owners who succeeded her and took over the enterprise manage to run this for six years with no registration at the town hall?? These are the people who should be held to account for the outstanding debt owed to the town hall. I have also had experience of this type of bureaucratic nonsense and I am sure that there is a bigger issue here which needs to be addressed urgently.

    sense and support both your stance and the tenacity of Kritzlyn al Taib

  3. I admire Kritzlyn for taking a stance on this. Too many expats would just pay up. I also registered a business to build two apartments in Canillas. Although I was “told” that there would be planning permission to rebuild on the site in the centre of Canillas, 6 years later it is not forthcoming. The town hall want me to finish off the build but I have refused to invest any more money until I get the licence. They did give me a licence once – in the wrong name, for the wrong property and with the wrong NIE number. My lawyer advised that I should pay it and it would be sorted out later. I did not agree with this.

  4. Register for nothing in Spain, and live with your properties and cars in someone else’s name and your bank account virtually empty if you need it to pay utilities – or else don’t have a spanish bank account – which also shouldn’t be in your name! Beat the spanish at their own crooked game.

  5. Well Tina Irving.
    The pay up and it will be sorted is surely one of the standard jokes within Spain. It will be sorted.. Later…. Manana.
    I have only just recently finished paying the IBI for some ones property in Marbella. My bank account was embargoed(I am amazed that more children are not given that name in Spain, it crops up all the time!)
    After many many visits to a local lawyer, who assured me it will be sorted? Letters back and forth to the Catastro In Malaga. They finally agreed that this was not my property, however payments continued to be taken form my account, now the last payment has been taken to cover this IBI which is quite substantial.
    Back to the lawyer who informs me that I will have to wait for 10 months for the money to be credited to my account, the reason being. Wait for it. They have so much work involving problems like yours. Where do they come from these people.?

  6. I recently wrote what I considered a true a honest picture about worldwide assets.
    I notice it has not been published having been moderated I suppose.
    I have looked at the list below and cannot see honesty as a reason not to publish

  7. “I have only just recently finished paying the IBI for some ones property in Marbella”

    Never, ever, ever, ever pay for someone elses IBI with your own bank account. If a problem arises then the authorities will blacklist your own account, and you’ll then be fighing the mad Spanish bureaucracy for years to come, as sadly you’ll now find out. Best bet now is to try and get a new bank account and leave nothing in the old one (this will be difficult since you are now blacklisted).

    “Where do they come from these people?”

    Er, Spain.

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