Just a reminder to British residents in Spain that you need to request your Foreigner’s ID card (Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero), and it might be wise to get it done before the transition period ends this year.
Before Brexit, British residents in Spain could live here just like other EU nationals, with the green registration certificate for EU nationals, and more recently, the more user-friendly EU citizen registration card, which is easier to carry around. Brexit changed all that.
Under the terms of the Withdrawal Agreement, Brits in Spain now have to get a ‘Residence Document’, known in Spanish as a Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero (ID card for foreigners), to replace their EU registration documentation.
The application procedure opened on the 6th of July, and in theory, it doesn’t end when the transition period expires at the end of this year, but my advice is take no chances and get your application in before the end of the year. Although the Spanish Government advice says “Applications for the replacement of the registration certificate already in your possession may be raised at any time, including once the transition period is over,” why wait and take a chance if you can do it now? The rules can, and do, change.
I’ve been meaning to submit my application since the process opened in July, but with all the drama going on this year time has flown by and now we are in October and it will be Christmas before we know it. I guess I’m not alone.
Thanks to Covid-19, all interactions with the Spanish bureaucracy have become slower and more painful than normal, so getting an appointment might be a challenge.
Though I live in Barcelona, I couldn’t get an appointment anytime soon in the city, but with the help of the experts at Barcelona Relocations Services (BRS), who know how the system works, I managed to get an appointment with an immigration office 10 days from now in a town outside Barcelona. It’s not that convenient, but it’s soon.
The application process is relatively straight forward, and the Brexit guide published by La Moncloa – the office of the Spanish President – explains how it works. You can read the guide here.
You can download the application form Modelo EX23 here.
One of the documents you have to include with the application is a padron certificate from your local authority / ayuntamiento no more than 3 months old. If you don’t have one you can request one in person, or on the phone, depending on where you live, but it might take a few days for the document to reach you. In the case of Barcelona I was looking at 7 to 10 for an appointment or delivery by post, which was too late for my appointment with the immigration department. If you have a digital certificate you might be able to download it immediately, in the form of a ‘Volante de Residencia’, which worked for me.
You also have to pay a fee of €21.44 presenting a form you can fill in and download here (The procedure you need to select is ‘.TIE que documenta la autorización de residencia de larga duración o de residencia de larga duración-UE.’). I paid this fee at my bank online using the barcode on the document I downloaded. Just select ‘En efectivo’ from the payment terms, then log into your online banking and pay the fee using the barcode number. Print off the proof of payment and take it with you to the appointment.
If you are one of many hundreds of thousands of Britons living in Spain, and plan to stay, then my advice is get your TIE card application done sooner rather than later, preferably before the transition period ends on the 31st of December. You never know what’s around the next corner with Brexit, so better safe than sorry.