There are quite many situations in which private security agents exceed their powers. Barcelona law office Marin&Pasalodos invites you to read this article and keep yourself informed about what are the actual tasks of security guards, what are they allowed to do and what they cannot. This way, you will know whether you have the right to refuse to comply with their instructions, or you must indeed do as they indicate; the Spanish Law 5/2014 establishes the regulations concerning private security.
We can choose not to comply when the following actions are performed by private security guards:
-they cannot search your bag or other personal belongings, unless you voluntarily offer your permission. If the guard decides to snatch the purse from you and starts searching it without your permission, you are entitled to call the police and file a complaint. They do not have a warrant in order to do that!

-they can only stop you and retain you for the minimum amount of time needed in order to call the police, but ONLY in the cases when you are caught in the attempt to commit a crime, or they have solid suspicion that you have done something illegal;

– the security guards can carry out identification IDs checks, but, under any circumstance, they cannot retain your documents; what they can do, on the other hand, is to prohibit your access from the place they are guarding. Also, for example, it is completely legal to be asked for your identification ID if you want to buy alcohol from a certain place, BUT if you find yourself in a shop and there are reasons to believe that a crime has been committed there, you are not obliged to show your ID to the security guard;

– they cannot proceed to interrogate a criminal, and if they have already done it, such notes will not be taken into consideration by the official authorities that will investigate the case;

– outside the area of the place they are guarding – they do no longer posses any of the duties of their job description. For example, in some public places, a private security guard of a different place has no right to act within his job tasks.
– when you are being asked by a security guard to cooperate about any issue, they need to show you their professional identification card (tarjeta de identificación profesional, in Spanish). If they refuse to show it to you, or they do not have such card, you are entitled to call the police in order to verify if indeed the security guard has this function and if he received the necessary training for the job.

If you want to find out more information about the legal actions that a private security guard can carry out, or if you have any questions or doubts related to any legal area, don’t hesitate to contact Barcelona lawyers of the Marin&Pasalodos law office. We are specialized in commercial law, civil law, administrative law and criminal law, and will offer full professional and emotional commitment in order to obtain a satisfactory result for our clients! You can reach us at the phone number (0034) 932006766, or by e-mailing us at Thank you for trusting in us!