Spanish law includes a system of fines as a penalty, in case of committing a crime. However, this system leaves a wide margin to the judge to determine it. A&O Abogados, expert lawyers in criminal law in Marbella, Spain, will explain it to you below.

Our criminal law system has classified penalties into three large groups: custodial sentences, custodial sentences and a fine. In the following lines we will address the structure of the fine penalty in Spanish Law.

Our system is configured by the day-fine system, setting a sum for each day. The purpose of this distribution of the fine is to convert it in case of non-payment. In other words, for every two days-fine not paid, it will be commuted to one day in prison.

Thus, we must address two variables in this type of sentence:

The limitation of the days and

The determination of the amount to be paid.

Regarding the determination of the days-fines to be imposed in each case, according to the corresponding type of crime, an interval is indicated where the corresponding penalty can be set. It will be up to the Judge, depending on the circumstances of the fact and the author’s personal circumstances, to set the specific sentence, with the limits of 10 days and 2 years, in the case of natural persons, and 5 years for legal persons.

Regarding the setting of the daily quota, as in the previous one, it will correspond to the Judge to set said quota, with the following limits

Physical persons:

Min. 2 EUR Max. EUR400

Legal persons

Min. EUR 30 Max. €5,000.

When the penalty is set by months, it will be understood that they have 30 days, while if they are set by years, it will be understood that they have 360.

How long do I have to pay the fine?

The Judge may agree to pay the fine within a period not exceeding two years, provided that said cause is justified.

When can it be understood that the sentence has been breached?

When the installment of the payment of the fine has been agreed, it may be considered that the non-payment of two installments implies the expiration of the rest.

What happens if I don’t pay?

The distribution of the sentence in days of a fine makes it possible for the sentence to be transformed into days of deprivation of liberty as a consequence of non-payment, establishing the Penal Code that one day of deprivation of liberty must be served for every two unsatisfied fine installments.


Can it be requested that the amount of the installments or the terms be modified if the circumstances have changed?

At the request of the offender, the Judge can be asked to modify the fine or the deadlines, proving the impossibility that has occurred.

There is another exceptional criterion for determining the fine in Spanish Criminal Law, such as the proportional fine, the setting of which will correspond to the Judge based on the specific circumstances of the case and the product obtained.

A&O Abogados, criminal lawyers on the Costa del Sol can help you with your fine. Contact us now.

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