Timeshare is a dream that is sold to many consumers, stunningly beautiful hotels with glorious green palm trees, bright blue swimming pools and sunshine that dazzles the soul. These vacations offer respite, relaxation and a touch of luxury. This is why so many people fall hook line and sinker when purchasing their timeshare, most times without doing the right amount of research first.
Sometimes it doesn’t take long for the initial gleam of the timeshare offering to tarnish and for people to realise that their timeshare is actually an albatross around their neck. It could be described as a vicious circle of yearly fees that inevitably increase, often for a timeshare that they can’t use anymore (often for varying reasons). Therefore, there is a growing number of timeshare owners who are desperately trying to remove themselves from their timeshare contract or sell their timeshare weeks.
It has come to our attention that consumers are using a company called International Timeshare Refund Action Limited (ITRA) to help them find a way out of their timeshare, for a fee. However, some of the feedback that has been received regarding the ITRA is disparaging to say the least.
Julia and Michael King are trying to get rid of a Club La Costa timeshare in Tenerife. “We paid ITRA over £5,000. This was over two years ago,” says Julie, from Loddiswell, Devon. “When I contact them, they seem to palm us off saying that they are waiting for a court case, which supposedly was heard on December 18 last year. “We have contacted ITRA to cancel as we were no nearer getting a result than when we signed up with them.”
Colin and Gail Mackay wanted to sell their Diamond International timeshare in Lanzarote in the Canary Islands when the yearly management fee reached around £1,500 and they couldn’t get their preferred holiday dates. “ITRA said that we would not get out of the agreement by ourselves,” says Colin, from Newcastle. “The agent stated that our children would still be liable for payment of fees after our deaths because the agreement was for 60 years.” The couple paid ITRA £4,180 in May 2015, but they say: “ITRA’s only input was a standard letter that we modified”.
Another consumer is Christine Carmichael, who wants shot of an MGM Muthu Clube timeshare in Praia da Oura, Albufeira, Portugal. Bought in 1999, its annual charges are now around £930. Christine decided to sell when her husband George passed away in 2014, paying ITRA £4,580. Since she’s not on the internet, her daughter Laura is helping. “So far ITRA have done very little, getting me to do most of their work,” Laura says. “The last I heard was that my mother had signed some legal documents – and nothing more since. That was well over a year ago. “My mother has since had demand letters for the payment of her annual fees. “She simply cannot afford to pay these fees and she can no longer travel abroad.”
Anthony and Maggie Holloway from Broom, Warwickshire are another couple who have been let down by the ITRA and are very unhappy. They own two timeshares, one in Scotland, the other in Florida, and paid ITRA just under £5,000 in 2014 to dispose of them. “After four years I am now informed that I still own the week in Scotland and am therefore liable for maintenance arrears of £742,” said Anthony. “It has threatened court action via their solicitor for recovery of the arrears. I had been assured by ITRA that they would be taking charge of all demands being made by the management companies.”
International Timeshare Refund Action Limited have boldly claimed that they have supported and given help to thousands of timeshare owners who wanted to escape their timeshare contracts. They have advised that all the cases mentioned are currently being dealt with by partner law firms. However, Michael Kings asked ITRA to stop acting for them, which is their only comment about that particular couple. ITRA have also explained that their business is currently in a very different situation now and being slowly wound down because the owner has been severely poorly for the last couple of years, intimating that this is one of the reasons why there may be some complaints from consumers.
Here at Timeshare.lawyer we wouldn’t like you to experience any timeshare troubles. If you have and are looking to exit and claim compensation against your timeshare resort then please call one of our Advisors today and ask for advice.
Please see our recent post regarding the real cost of timeshare.