Saturday, February 25, 2012

White-collar thieves among the legal profession / Miguel Iturría Savón

White-collar thieves among the legal profession / Miguel Iturría Savón
Miguel Iturria Savón, Translator: Unstated

The taxes and hard currency in the system of international legal
consulting and special notaries — for foreigners — enabled in every
Cuban province by the Ministry of Justice, does not appear in the
Yearbook of the National Statistics Office, but must be one of the most
profitable sources for the state bureaucracy, whose avidity for raising
dollars, euros and other strong currencies does not correspond to the
paperwork delays, lack of water, air conditioning and the solemnity of
the officials who deal with those who come to these places.

Perhaps the only kindness of these offices is the information brochure
given to visitors at the headquarters of the International Legal
Department located at number 314 16th Street between 3rd and 5th,
Miramar, Havana, which lists the services they provide, the cost of the
documents legalized and the addresses of branches in the rest of the
country, including Nueva Gerona on the Isle of Youth.

The branch of the Legal Havana International is located on 22 Street,
number 108 between 3rd and 1st, Miramar; while the Office of Notary
Services is on 5th Avenue no. 405, between 4 and 6, Miramar, where the
ceremonies are performed for nuptials between Cubans and foreign citizens.

There is also the International Consulting on 24th between 19 and 21,
Vedado, empowered to legalize notarized documents or to register with
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, essential for those who seek to
formalize other citizenships and foreign travel.

According to the leaflet, the International Legal Counsel is "a law firm
that stands for integrity, professional competence and experience gained
over more than twenty five years of work." It provides "legal services
to individuals and companies, domestic and foreign, based in Cuba and
abroad." The advice and assistance includes "civil law matters, family,
property, administrative, labor, criminal, economic, commercial,
financial, tax, maritime trade, foreign investment and intellectual

As in Cuba, corporations, joint ventures, representative offices and
travel agents are businesses exclusive to the state, citizens of the
island who come to these offices perceived them as a place to be
divested of their money in order to process the collation and
legalization of documents, the formalization of marriage to a foreigner,
immigration documents such as temporary travel permits, permits to
reside outside the country, or to leave the country permanently, valued
at $ 200 each, which adds to the prior cost of the passport at $55, or
its renewal at$30.

Those who marry foreigners must pay the attorney fee of $525 USD, plus
100 for probate, 75 for handling and 10 for seals in local currency. By
giving the first firm the foreign contract it will show the notary the
legalization of its documents at the Cuban consulate in your country,
which cost 500 euros or dollars, depending on the location. If you want
to celebrate the marriage you must empty your wallet of hard currency
and offer it up.

The international consultants work with Immigration and Nationality and
with other institutions to get the certified documents for travel to
Cuba (150.00 USD), the certification of criminal records, birth,
marriage and death, Acts of last will and proof of degrees and titles,
notes and thematic plan, which costs between 100 and 350 dollars each.

For people from other latitudes the costs listed are due to the logic of
the tax revenues of any nation, but for Cubans they are abusive, because
the offices are a monopoly and they price legal services on the island
in hard currency, though they pay our salaries in national pesos, which
are valued at 25 for one dollar.

September 22 2011

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