To claim or not to claim…. Reclaimgc

Timeshare consumers who have been around for some time and for all different reasons want to dispose of their membership are at some point faced with a very appealing offer from the so-called Reclaim companies that are around.

These companies unfortunately (and in spite of what they “predict”) do not always just look out for the interest of the consumers and as much as they announce they will not charge any money up front until the consumer obtains the money claimed. The word retainer fee, upfront legal costs, deposit..are still mentioned in the first contacts of these companies with the consumers and we do not know of any case where a claim has been put through without the consumer paying a penny to start.

One of the most active reclaim firms now is ReclaimGC / Claims Directive.

ReclaimGCwww.reclaimgc.com , set up in 2009 in Gran Canaria, by German national called Eugen Kaiser. They are also operating in Tenerife.

It doesn’t add to trust knowing that Mr Kaiser was twice arrested by the Spanish Police in the past and his Reclaimgc appears to be an excuse to sell his dubious holiday club Voyager – www.lifestylevacation.net.

They are approaching timeshare owners informing them that the companies where they bought the product used unlawful practices to sell them timeshares. Basically, ReclaimGC / Claims Directive claim that under The European Directive 94/97/EC, timeshare companies broke the law by taking a deposit from them before the cooling off period, although Kaiser forgets to tell them that under Spanish legislation the taking of deposits was permitted.

However, to be able to join such Class Action against the timeshare company and to get their contract cancelled, they are asked to join their costly holiday club Voyager (many victims quote a figure of 6,000 Euros). The owner of the company states that it can take up to 5 years before the case will be heard in court and that the case can only be processed under Spanish Law.

So to get out of one holiday-club, you buy into another holiday-club…but you think you are paying for the legal costs which you will recover double when your claim goes through.

As per one of the managers of Reclaimgc, in a comment on a timeshare forum the reclaim works as follows:

Each case is different depending on where you own timeshare and the amount of timeshare you own.
We wish to underline that we work on a NO WIN – NO FEE basis and that our commission is taken after the case is closed and the claim is paid out. In other words, we don’t take on cases which we are not sure to win.
At first our legal advisors will have a look at your timeshare contracts to establish that you have a claim. This initial assessment of your claim is FREE OF CHARGE.

If they establish that you have a claim you can decide to proceed by giving our lawyers a Power of Attorney to act on your behalf in the Spanish courts. The only upfront fee you pay is for legal costs and this will be determined by the amount of timeshare you have purchased. This fee is fixed to cover all the legal costs associated with your claim regardless of how long it takes to secure a successful outcome. The defendant will be sentenced to refund you all of your legal costs.
How long a claim takes to get assessed by the courts depend on many external factors which we cannot affect. A case can take from 6 month up to more than 2 years, very much depending on when a judge in the Spanish Courts has time to assess your case. “

So from a NO WIN-NO FEE, FREE OF CHARGE phrase we are thrown into the “Nitti gritty” of an upfront fee and costs to be covered6000 Euros is a lot of money compared with Free of Charge.

They neither take on cases where they are not sure if they can win in the courts, but with a bit of searching on the internet it becomes clear that not everything is as “easy” as they paint it:

Court rejects 9 more “Claims Directive” cases : Brussels 17th December 2010 – in a press release issued December 7th, the Anfi group reports that a further 9 claims brought by owners represented by Claims Directive have been rejected by Several judges in Las Palmas, making a total of 14 consecutive rulings in favor of Anfi Group in the last two months. (more: http://www.rdo.org/es/node/704)

Bottom-line: Reclaimgc takes upfront fees for supposed legal costs, they sell a discount holiday club to consumers who think they are getting legal advice, they forget to tell that the supposed legislation used for the claim was not applicable in Spain, they forget that they already have many cases rejected, and last but not least…nobody got their upfront fee back!

About mindtimeshare

Mindtimeshare SLU is registered Company reg number: B35957182 Mindtimeshare provides assistance to timeshare owners who have been defrauded by holiday clubs and bogus resale companies. The Mindtimeshare project was launched in February 2011. After dealing with timeshare members over several years who had been defrauded by numerous bogus companies and for large amounts of money, I considered launching an Organisation to help timeshare owners that have been targeted by bogus companies. On this blog you can find information about the different active scam companies and their “modus operandi” and also place comments, ask questions and see comments from other consumers who have the same doubts or have been through the same experience. Mindtimeshare has resulted in a huge success and has received the back up from not only timeshare consumers but also from the professionals in the timeshare Industry. Mindtimeshare helps timeshare owners who have been scammed by bogus Discount Holiday Clubs; bogus cash back companies; fraudulent timeshare resale companies; bogus class action companies and false lawyers and notaries. We offer professional answers and advice to Timeshare users. If you want to send an email instead of posting a comment on the blog please do so by emailing: customercare@mindtimeshare.com
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16 Responses to To claim or not to claim…. Reclaimgc

  1. heather says:

    I am very worried about my parents who are currently in tennerife on a court case which has been suspended supposedly due to a court error, they have paid upfront fees close to 2 years ago for legal and translation fees. they were with resort properties/silver point and i think the company dealing with the claim is reclaim GC. i really don’t know what to do now to help them.
    they are in tennerife after already being duped into buying time-shares they didn’t want, they don’t know where to turn or who they can trust.

  2. eve says:

    Reclaimgc – I have had a home visit to England today for 5 and a half hours advising me what to do about my timeshare portfolio which i have 5 weeks of timeshares with Beverley Hills and Mirage in Tenerife. I had already paid them money to make this visit to me. Then I have filled in forms and paid another £500 deposit (they want 10,000 Euros) to pay the solicitors and the courts for their services and translations to act for my as Power of Attorney. They say they have never lost a claim but also have only recently won one or two because most of the cases settle out of court and the time period is a maximum of 2 years. I will get all my money back, all my deposits back, court costs back and all the money I have spent on buying these timeshares with about 4% a years inflation rate added on. From the first sum of the settlement they take their 25%. They do not touch any percentage of my costs, or anything else I receive back. Because I have no money they suggest I get some equity off my house. What do you think? Does anyone out there have any cases they have had settled and refunded from this company?

    • Elizabeth says:

      So did I have a home visit which cost me £402 they said the court costs are going to be another £7-8 thousand, I’m glad I found out they are a sc** first.

  3. TH says:

    Dear Mindtimeshare,
    Unfortunately we have been scammed by this company and its agent Resort 4 All. Please find below letter later sent claiming a refund as they promised.

    We have just returned from a very hot, sunny Gran Canaria and it turned out to be an very interesting trip and one that need not have been made, it became clear that the information and confirmations that were a best very economical with the truth and at worst lies told purely in order to give your company a financial benefit and as you stated in your e mail to me and I quote “IF YOU FEEL WE HAVE LIED TO YOU IN ANY WAY WE WILL REFUND YOUR MONEY” and after I have outlined the problem areas you will understand why we are claiming a full refund.

    As your staff were fully aware our financial situation is not good and certainly we could find far better things to spend £1000 on then a fools trip to Gran Canaria.

    When I originally spoke to Brett over the phone at home he was quick to assure me that he wasn’t trying to sell me anything, but in fact was giving me the chance to reclaim back my timeshare costs to which I was dubious, we then spent about 45 minutes with him explaining the possibilities and for my part, I related the full sorry story of our timeshare history with Resort Properties from the outset in 1983 to losing our weeks in 2007 due to nonpayment of the maintenance fees (thanks to ILG). I advised him that I hadn’t either received or paid a maintenance invoice since 2006, in comment, he advised that we would still be liable to the back dated fees as the contracts I had signed were in perpetuity, this fact was also confirmed in your e mail dated XXXXX.

    Brett informed us that all we would have to pay was the air fare, a discounted accommodation cost, as you would be covering the majority of the cost, insurance and living expenses, also on the two days we would be meeting the lawyers and notaries our breakfast would be provide with lunch throughout the week also being free. Before ending our call I asked him for his e mail address as I would send him a letter originally sent to Resort Properties back in October 2006. After receiving it he rang back to confirm that he had shown it to a colleague better qualified in this matter and the conclusion was that we had an excellent chance of reclaiming our monies.

    I received an e mail from you confirming the procedure outlined by Brett the day previous and stating “ Our clients come to us for a variety of reasons. To relinquish their liability, being the main reason. At present Spain is in recession and they are targeting timeshare companies who have large tax bills. In return the timeshare companies are using debt collectors to retrieve maintenance payments from owners who have not paid for several years. We are also finding cases of client’s whose maintenances are increasing heavily to compensate this. At present we have an embargo against Resort Properties in Tenerife for the value of 9 million Euros. This is for 150 of our clients claiming against this company. It ensures that when we win the claim our clients get their money. Please note that we work on a no win no fee basis and will take a fee of 25 percent of your claim when you are successful. We will only invite clients because of this that we feel have a good chance of reclaiming their money.”
    I replied thanking you for sending the information and asking you to reconfirm that all I would have to pay would be the air fare, accommodation costs, insurance and living expenses and would not be asked for any more money when I were in Gran Canaria, I received a telephone call from Claire who verbally confirmed that these cost would be our only liability. She then enquired whether I would like that accept the invitation and I advised that on the basis that had been discussed and confirmed earlier I would go ahead and advised that the 16th July would be the best week for us, on checking she stated that one villa was available and that normally they sold for 1200 euros, but I would only have to pay £370 / 460 euros which I paid immediately by credit card. I then proceeded to book the flights, arrange overnight stay at airport and insurance, having done this I sent an e mail dated 21st June.
    It was mentioned on a number of occasions that my mother was 81 years old and was only on a basic pension and that I was 57 years old and although having worked in the business travel industry for 30 years had been made redundant in 2010 and had been without any financial assistance from the UK Government for the last 18 months. So taking all this into account the one and only reason that we would ever consider putting ourselves through an ordeal which started with getting up at 4 am to travel to the airport for a 7 am flight, sitting in a cramped airlne seat for 4 hours and 40 minutes, then sit for another 40 minutes whilst the transfer coach made its way to our accommodation. Is because I was told we had an excellent chance of winning our case and could received our timeshare costs back, this was also backed up by a passage from your e mail dated XXXX stating “We will only invite clients because of this that we feel have a good chance of reclaiming their money. It is important that you speak directly with our Lawyers in Gran Canaria and come out to see us as soon as possible to ensure that we start your claim process. Our lawyers are incredibly busy and their dates are booking up fast.”
    On the subject of the 4 star accommodation you provided for us. Whilst I have no doubt it will be a 4 star villa complex when it is finished, it certainly isn’t at present. It is situated about 2 miles down a dusty, twisting side road, in the middle of a building site, and is still in the building stages itself, regular power cuts (several dozen throughout the week) disrupted air conditioning (with high temperature and humidity this was essential), food preparation and any entertainment provided by the complex, whilst the villas were spacious they were totally unsuitable for an 81 year old as the bedrooms and bathroom was upstairs, finally the complex was only accessible by either a hire car or taxis(both extra expenses) none of these points were advised on booking.

    On three occasions I asked if all we would have to pay for was the airfare, accommodation, insurance and living expenses and every time I received the same verbal answer from Brett, Claire and yourself. In an e mail sent to you on the 2 July I raised a number of concerns which came from reading the question and answer secton of the ReclaimGC website on the subject of legal fees and copied here, the question asked was –
    “ Are there any other costs and what are they for?
    Yes you will have to pay legal fees. These fees cover the lawyers’
    costs, procurador costs and the cost of translating all your documents
    into Spanish and will vary depending on your individual claim. However
    all these costs will be added to your claim”

    My questions to you were –
    “Why was this not mentioned during our early conversations ?
    How much extra will we have to pay out when we are in GC ?
    Do any legal fees come out of the 25% or are they upfront and non refundable
    regardless of the case out come ?”

    Stephen Doyle telephoned later that day and advised that the website was out of date and referred to the early days of the business and that definitely all we would have to pay is the airfare, accommodation, insurance and living expenses, there would be nothing else to pay in Gran Canaria.

    We got a telephone call from Frank at Atlantic Sands checking that everything was in place and we would be arriving on the XXXXX , during the discussion I offered to send him the same letter earlier sent to Brett, he rang back on XXXXX and was shocked by the problems we had suffered, but reserved any judgement until our meeting. During that meeting on XXXXX with Frank and his manager, Paul, a number of interesting points came to the surface.

    The meeting lasted less than an hour, as they quickly advised us that we had no case for reclaim and couldn’t understand why we were encouraged to make the trip out to see them. The Spanish Timeshare law was only proposed in 1994 and ratified late in 1996 so anything prior is ineligible, secondly and more importantly, because we hadn’t paid any maintenance since 2005 our claim was null and void. This fact was made clear to Brett during our original telephone conversation, but the biggest stumbling block to any case going ahead was the £5000 legal fees that would be required up front and although refundable if the case was successful would have made it impossible for us to continue . So as mentioned earlier in this letter, I raised this point on four separate occasions and on each occasion was told nothing else to pay, no extra fees.

    In the same original telephone conversation, Brett advised that we needed to set aside two days for meetings and breakfast would be provided with lunch provided free every day. This was met with great surprise by both gentlemen as it was news to then both, but like gentlemen the promise was honoured, the free lunches are actually given by the complex to everyone. So again the truth was spread very economically.
    Coming back to the accommodation, when talking to Claire, we were advised that the normal selling rate for the 4 star hotel was 1200 euro’s, but that you were letting us have it for £370 / 460 euro’s, which gave the impression that you were paying the remainder, but in fact the complex give the villas free, making you a tidy profit of £370, this hardly sits alongside your statement on the e mail “that you work on a no win no fee basis” and that the impression put across that you were paying the difference is totally false, inaccurate and used as a sales ploy.
    The consequences of the decision your staff made to give us false hope and encourage us to travel are far reaching, a month before we travelled, my mother was rushed into hospital with a mini stroke, fortunately she recovered and her consultant thought the trip would do her good, it has had the opposite effect, you state that you book accommodation to fit our needs of your clients, this obviously wasn’t the case as a two storey villa complex is hardly suitable for an 81 year old lady(if we had known this again we wouldn’t have booked), the complex being in the building stage resulted in numerous power cuts with the consequent air conditioning problems, the lack of sleep caused by this was a contributory factor in me falling on the villa stairs early in the morning and fracturing my wrist, spending most of that day in a Medical Centre and Clinica, using our holiday money on taxis, medicines and insurance excesses, rearranging our transfer back to Las Palmas causing extra expense, making alternative arrangements to return home leaving the car in Leeds airport hotel car park with the added problems of how to get it back home and finally the domestic problems caused by not being able to drive a car for next six weeks.
    In conclusion, you and your staff took us as mugs, feed us with false hopes and went laughing all the way to the bank. You were supposed to be helping people gain back money lost through dubious dealing with timeshare, giving them true 100% honesty, so that for once they could actually place they trust in somebody from this sordid industry. I said at the very start of our dealings that over the years our faith in anybody slightly involved in the timeshare industry had eroded to the point that we are very sceptical in anyone who contacts us out of the blue on a cold call basis, we gave you the benefit of the doubt, that you were different, but you’re not, you’re just the same or probably worse.
    Our costs for this fool’s errand are –

    2 x AIR FARES £ 471.96
    AIRPORT ACCOMMODATION AND CAR PARKING £ 63.00
    TRANSFERS TO RESORT IN GRAND CANARIA £ 25.80
    ATLANTIC SANDS ACCOMMODATION £ 370.00
    2 X INSURANCES £ 34.59
    TOTAL COSTS £ 965.35

    I have not included living expenses because I do not have receipts to prove them, but I do have all the receipts for the medical incidentals, but at this stage I will not add them to the above total. My case is proven I believe and now I expect you to keep your promise of a FULL REFUND.

    Yours sincerely

  4. G says:

    HI,
    My wife and I have just retuned from Gran Canaria and are not happy, especially after reading the concerns of fellow readers of mindtimeshare. We to were pulled in yet again, we were hoping that this was going to be a genuine way of getting out of this nightmare. Only to find ourselves deeper in dept. Reclaimgc made it sound the best way to get out of our predicament by going through their system to recoup all our finances, we were then told to go to the notary to start our claim. They also took Voyager / Lifetime Holidays in to play thus we paid a deposit of 600 euros with a balance of £4xxx to be financed by a company called Empire Financial Services , they are to get in touch in the coming week. I am going to get in touch with my bank, also going to e-mail Gran Canaria that I am Cancelling the contract, also cancel reclaimgc contract. Really need advice from mindtimeshare urgently for peace of mind. Those people are scrupulous and we feel ashamed to be associated with them. We are responsible and work hard for our Holidays throughout the year, just like everyone else does and to be treated like this is well pardon the pun ( just a s*** ). How do we stand with Reclaimgc.
    Thank you
    G

  5. Donald says:

    Reclaimgc – I got involved with them in October 2011 via Gran Canaria Resorts and attended a presentation in Tenerife about a class action against Resort Properties/Silverpoint. The presentation was very slick and persuasive which ended up with my wife and myself agreeing to proceed against R.Properties. A 10% deposit was required but was agreed 1000Euros would be enough till will returned home to arrange the balance. At home we investigated and started to get seriously concerned when a fellow holiday maker who attened the presentation contacted me and advised he was having doubts about what we had committed ourselves to do. After a few weeks churning it over and over and contacting various people we advised Reclaim that we would not be proceeding and requested my deposit to be returned.
    Wonder of wonders the depoit appeared in our bank yesterday minus the 65Euros paid to the Notary.We are extremely pleased withe outcome. It was not a great battle to get the refund and
    all paper work appertaining to the proposed case was returned immediately.
    We can say that at least there are some folks with a conscience in the industry.

    Can anybody confirm to me if there is a direct connetion between Gran Canaria Resorts & Relaimgc as both claim that they are seperate companies with no connection – legally or financially.
    I tend to think there is a tie as the address on the contact sheet si the same for both up but wish confirmation.

    Thanks

  6. Per says:

    Re Reclaimgc.
    I (German ) also received a call from a callcenter re Reclaimgc. I looked at their promising webside and different bloggs. Before they called me again I wrote to my solicitor, who is representing me in another case (CARPE DIEM). His answer – in german, but who is interested my translate it by google translation – may also be interesting to you:
    Angesichts Ihrer Darlegungen in Bezug auf Reclaim GC dürfen wir Ihnen mitteilen, dass es sich um einen Betrug handelt, der darauf hinausläuft, dass Sie viel Geld für nichts ausgeben. In der Vergangenheit hatten wir bereits Fälle mit dieser Firma, wobei das Geld an die betrogenen Timesharing Inhaber rückzuerstatten war. Es handelt sich um eine Firma, deren Bevollmächtigte Paula Beatson ist (die Rechte Hand von Eugen Kaiser). Beide sind in der Welt der Timesharing Firmen recht bekannt und auch dafür, dass kein einvernahmtes Geld rückerstattet wird. Diese Leute kontaktieren hoffnungslose Personen, die betrogen werden, um eine mutmaβliche Beauftragung einer Anwaltskanzlei zu unterzeichnen. Diese Anwälte gehören nicht einmal dieser Firma an. Diese werden vielmehr, wenn man das Geld erhalten hat (stets recht hohe Beträge), von Reclaim GC kontaktiert, damit gerichtliche Schritte eingeleitet werden. Obendrein wird über diese Angelegenheit auf Teneriffa entschieden, weshalb man auf Gran Canaria recht wenig tun kann. Auβerdem sind die auf dieser Webseite zur Verfügung gestellten Informationen nicht richtig und zudem -was die existenten gesetzlichen Regelungen anbetrifft- veraltet.
    Glauben Sie einfach nicht, dass Sie im Voraus keine Zahlungen zu leisten haben. Sie müssen doch Zahlungen leisten und zwar unter dem Vorwand von Anwalts- und Prozessbevollmächtigtenkosten sowie auch Übersetzungskosten. Auβerdem wird dargelegt, dass man -wenn die Angelegenheit abgeschlossen ist- 25 % des vereinnahmten Betrages behalten wird.
    Damit Sie wissen, wovon wir reden, könnte man sagen, dass der Fuchs sich als Huhn verkleidet und sich selbst zum Hüter des Hühnerstalles ernannt hat. Dies ist die Situation dieser Firma, da die Personen, die diese Firma führen, in der Timesharing Welt bekannt sind, und nicht gerade für die Erfüllung dessen, was die gesetzlichen Regelungen festlegen.

    • Dear Per,
      Thank you very much for your comment.
      We have decided to put the translation to English of your message on the blog, as we feel that there are a lot of consumers who need to see this information as well and do not speak German.
      Many thanks again.
      Kind regards
      Customer Care.

      TRANSLATION:
      Given your statements in reference to Reclaim GC, we must inform you that this is a fraud, the amounts of money that you would spend would be for nothing. In the past we had cases of that agency, and the money was repaid to the defrauded timeshare owners. It is a firm whose agents Paula Beatson (the right hand of Eugene Kaiser) are well known in the world of timeshare, and also ensure that no money will be refunded at all. These people contact desperate people (timeshare consumers) who are defrauded in order to sign supposed service of a law firm. These attorneys are not even at this company. Instead they are contacted by Reclaim GC and asked for money (always quite high amounts) so that legal action be initiated. On top of this matter this all happens in Tenerife or Gran Canaria and this is why you can do very little. The Information is far-outdated on this web site, information is not correct, and also what the existent laws concern.
      Do not believe that you don’t have to make any payment in advance. They require to make payments under the pretext of legal fees and costs, and also represented by translation costs. Apart from that the Information on the web shows that if the matter is completed a 25% of the collected amount is retained.
      So you know what we’re talking, you could say that the fox disguises himself as a chicken and appointed himself guardian of the chicken-house. This is the situation of this company and the people who run this known company in the timeshare world, and they are not in fulfillment of which legal regulations define.

  7. Eunice Peel says:

    I have been contacted by Half Moon Holdings asking me to pay them to buy my holiday club membership. I know this is a scam and have not and never would pay them any money but, I am being bombarded by telephone calls. How can I stop them ringing me?

    • Dear Eunice,

      Many thanks for your comment. I am very pleased to see that more and more people are not falling for this scam and refrain from havin dealings with this bogus resale company. How to stop the calls? Report them to the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) – http://www.ico.gov.uk – which is now the watchdog responsible for guarding British national’s personal information, and which it has been granted new powers to hunt down bogus firms and fine them up to £500,000. Maybe if all affected consumers do this they might stop harassing others in the future!

      Regards

      Customer Servie Department

  8. Alex Montgomery says:

    Unfortunately I have been conned by Half Moon Holdings to the tune of 1200 Euros.
    There claim was very plausable, stating that they have had an offer of £8000.00 for the purchase of our holiday plan with Inentive Leisure. As you probably know Incentive Leisure hasve since been procecuted on several charges.
    I have a ‘Reclaims’ voucher from Incentive Leisure, what happens to that or is it probably worthless.
    Regards,
    A.Montgomeryt

    • Dear Alex,
      Thanks for your comment on the blog. It is very unfortunate that this bogus resale company continues their fraudulent practises. This needs to be stopped. I am sending you an email with the information we need to help you seeking a refund for both Half Moon Holdings monies paid and ILG.
      Regards,
      Customer Service Department

      • Donald Taylor says:

        I too have been sucked in as Alex above by a company called blue-chip to the tune of 1150EUros with a promise of £7500 pds on resale of my Incentive Leisure Group Holiday Certificate.
        I was advsied that it was sold but another £900pds was required to pay tax before releasing the money – at this I said no as I recived advice from SpanishConsul and other sources.
        Another mug !!!

      • Hi Donald,
        Thanks for the message.
        Let us at least send you the info by email and see if you have a possibility to claims the money back.
        Kind regards
        Customer Care

      • Donald Taylor says:

        Thanks your reply.

        Would appreciate any guidance available from you.

        I also have have been caught up in the ILG fiasco and have a reclaim voucher along with my original puchase certificate

        Rgds

        Donald

      • Hi Donald,
        We’ve send you the info by email and are waiting for your reply.
        Kind regards
        Customer Care

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