Many people shy away from making a formal complaint or denuncia against a trader, business or company because they fear that they will become embroiled in a Spanish bureaucratic nightmare. Nothing could be further from the truth, making a claim against a company or business is easy using the Hoja de Reclamación, informally known as the Complaints Book.
By Nick Nutter | Updated 22 Mar 2023 | Andalucia | Living In Andalucia | Login to add to YOUR Favourites or Read LaterThis article has been visited 1,340 times
Hoja de Reclamacion Andalucia
Complaints against a trader, business or company in Spain, often start with what is known as a denuncia. The nature of the complaint, the denuncia, is detailed on a form called the Hoja de Reclamación, informally known as the Complaints Book or Complaints Form.
Technically, every sole trader, business and company should have a Hoja de Reclamación available for their customers. They should also display a sign indicating they have such a book. In practice, businesses that have a front, like a shop, restaurant, bar, hotel and so on usually have a complaints book. Many sole traders without a premise do not have a Hoja de Reclamación.
There are some businesses in some sectors that have their own formalised claims procedure including banks, insurance providers, investment companies, telecommunications services, transportation companies, airlines and energy companies.
If the business does not have a Hoja de Reclamación to hand, then you can download one here:
This is the Junta de Andalucia form, other regions may have slightly different forms.
To find yours type ‘hojas de reclamaciones + your region’ into a search engine.
Notice that the Junta de Andalucia form can be translated into English, click the Union Flag at top right of the page.
Notice also that the form is completed on line and then downloaded as a pdf.
There are three stages:
- Try to reach an amicable agreement with the business against whom you have a complaint.
- If that does not work, complete and submit a Hojas de Reclamaciones
- If there is no satisfactory response after 10 days, submit the completed Hojas de Reclamaciones to your local Consumer Office
First of all you will need three copies of the form, one for you, one for the business and one to submit to your local (not necessarily local to the business location) Consumer Office, Las Oficinas Municipales de Información al Consumidor (OMICs). The Consumer Office is often in the Town Hall building or Ayuntamiento.
Complete the form, you can use English but keep it simple and precise, somebody in the Consumer Office will have to read and translate it into sensible Spanish. Gather together any supporting evidence, emails or letters you have sent to try to resolve the matter, invoices, images etc.
Hand the form to the business or trader against whom you have a complaint. Record the date and have the business or trader stamp the form and copies with their official stamp if they have one.
If there has been no satisfactory response within 10 days then you should take a copy of the form plus the supporting evidence to your local consumer office.
The Consumer Association investigate the claim and either present you with a resolution and/or instigate court proceedings for you.
The court decides if there is any recompense due to you and the amount.
- The business against whom you have a complaint will often settle as soon as you ask for the complaints book since they do not want a bad record with the consumer association.
- If they do not settle immediately then they normally settle within the 10 days between being handed the complaint and you lodging the complaint with the consumer association.
- Once the matter is in the hands of the consumer association, very few traders or businesses allow the complaint to go past the recommended resolution stage.