Advertising law


In Spain, as in most EU countries, advertising laws have undergone changes to adapt them to the EU advertising regulations. Advertising is thus regulated by different laws that protect consumers from deceptive, misleading and other types of unlawful advertising.

Pursuant to Spanish laws, the following types of advertising are deemed as unlawful practices:

  • Misleading advertising
  • Degrading or discriminatory advertising
  • Subliminal advertising
  • Unlawful comparative advertising
  • Aggressive, deceptive, false and unfair advertising
  • Advertising made in violation of regulations for certain products, goods, activities or services

Advertising of certain goods and services is regulated by specific laws. This is the case of sanitary products, lotteries, gambling, alcoholic beverages and certain products, services and activities that may create a risk for people’s health, security, and property. Advertising contracts and sponsor contracts also have a separate regulation.

The main purpose of the Spanish regulations is to protect consumers from illegal advertising and unfair competition by sanctioning those unlawful practices.

In Spain, individuals and companies who need to enforce their rights either as an advertiser or as a recipient of advertising may do so either in the court or by using the advertising self-regulation system called Autocontrol. The latter is faster and more economic than the court system.


The Asociación para la Autorregulación de la Comunicación Comercial (“Autocontrol”) is the Spanish advertising self-regulation organisation, similar to all those existing in other EU countries. It is composed of the main advertisers, agencies and media (TV, press, outdoor, radio, Internet, etc.) in Spain, as well as the main advertising industry associations.

Self-regulation organisations contribute to ensure high ethical standards in advertising to benefit consumers, competitors and the marketplace. They provide advertisers and consumers with a very effective tool to settle advertising-related disputes, which is much faster and more economic than court proceedings.

Autocontrol participates in the control and application schemes of all sectoral advertising codes in Spain (TV advertising, food advertising for children, toys, videogames, alcoholic beverages, etc.).

There are 3 key instruments in Autocontrol, as in most advertising self-regulation organisations:

  • Codes of Conduct
  • Out-of-court dispute settlement system: Advertising Jury
  • Prior control mechanisms: Advertising pre-launch advice service (“Copy Advice”) and Cookie review service (“Cookie Advice”)


Domènech Corbella – Legal Services regularly advises in all kind of advertising law matters, marketing campaigns, promotions, product placement and ambush marketing. We will provide you fast, effective and professional legal advice, including:

  • Review, negotiation and drafting of contracts: We prepare, negotiate and review your advertising contracts (marketing, sponsorship, advertising, etc.).
  • Copy advice: We provide you with our technical opinion and advice on the legal and ethical correctness of a specific advertisement before it’s launched to the public.
  • Court proceedings and Autocontrol: We represent you in all proceedings related to advertising law, filing and answering claims with self-regulatory bodies (Autocontrol, Farmaindustria) or before the courts.
  • Response to all legal consultations: Feel free to submit your queries regarding any advertising law related matter. We will provide you with legal advice and solve all your concerns rapidly and effectively. Send us an email, call us or contact us through the contact form on this website, and we will deal with your inquiry immediately.