Can Spain collect IBI on illegal house?

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Flickr, kallaloko

Q. We have been in our property since 2005 on an urbanisation of 25 villas. At the time we were issued one common ‘catastral’ number so we all have the same number. None of us has ever paid IBI tax. Our villas are legal, but there is land adjacent that was originally planned for further construction by the same builder. Licences were granted by the town hall but later revoked by the Andalucian Regional Government. Several court cases are pending. Because of this we have been informed our individual catastral numbers cannot be issued until a court decision is made. We have now been required to pay our IBI backdated four years. We have no objection to paying as we knew this would come. However I understand all properties need to have an individual number for IBI to be collected.

Can you confirm? V.W. (Almeria)

A.

Unfortunately the ‘Junta de Andalucia’ has specifically resolved that, if the property exists physically, it can be taxed. It sounds as if your builder never had the land legally divided into individual plots. However, the regional government has surely made its own measurements, so you must pay the annual real estate tax for the past four years.

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