How Does Brexit Affect Spanish Residency for Expats?
On 31 January 2020, the United Kingdom left the European Union (EU) for good. This is a very important event that will go down in history, as it is the first time that a member country has left this legal-political community. This is a departure that was accompanied by a Retirement Agreement, which established a transition period during which citizens’ rights are maintained.
In other words, for 11 months, the UK will continue to comply with all EU rules and regulations. In addition, it will also remain in the single market, in the customs union and allow the free movement of people. Thanks to this last point, British citizens who reside in other European Union countries such as Spain can apply for a Spanish Residency permit.
Obtaining Spanish residency after Brexit is not going to be that easy, so immigration experts recommend requesting all documentation before December 31, 2020. In order not to have problems in this sense, the most appropriate thing to do is to contact Tejada Solicitors, a law firm specialised in legal services for foreigners in Spain. British citizens must realise that after the 31st of December 2020, their rights will be no different from those of any other third-country nationals.
What is the purpose of the Spanish residence permit?
All British citizens living in Spain for more than 3 months are obliged to apply for a residence certificate, as they must comply with the same rights and tax obligations as other Spanish citizens. This residence permit is similar to a temporary or permanent legal certificate, through which you can live in the country without any problem. Previously, British citizens could remain as long as they wished without a permit due to EU agreements. This will no longer be the case.
Therefore, British citizens who already reside in Spain, or who are moving to Spain from UK must apply for this residence certificate. Through this process, any citizen of the United Kingdom obtains Spanish residency and all the rights that this implies – the right to work, the right to free medical care, the right to free education for children, the right to start a business, and so on. On the other hand, this residence permit also comes with tax obligations.
Whatever the case may be, the reality is that the best practice is to fill in all the documents correctly before December 31st 2020, since after this date, it will be necessary to carry out many more tasks and go through a lot more paperwork to obtain permanent residence in Spain. After this date, the agreement for the exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union comes into force.
How do you obtain a Spanish residence permit?
As in other European Union countries, British citizens must comply with Spanish residency requirements before they can obtain a permit. To regularise the situation as soon as possible, the most advisable thing to do is to contact a law firm such as Tejada Solicitors, since these professionals from the world of law are specialists in the field of immigration.
Once you contact the law firm, it is time to go to the immigration office closest to your home – if not possible, you can also visit the local police station. In these spaces of the Spanish public administration, British citizens have to fill in a procedure and hand it into the relevant authorities.
If the documentation is correct, the Spanish public administration issues a temporary residence permit, which is valid for 5 years, unless personal circumstances change and are reported to the immigration office. To obtain a permanent residence certificate, British citizens must reapply and meet all the requirements.
What documents are required to obtain residence in Spain?
As mentioned above, British citizens who want to take up residence in Spain need to meet several conditions, which will change after the 31st of December 2020. Therefore, more and more British citizens residing in Spain are regularising their situation to obtain permanent residence.
In order not to encounter any obstacles along the way to obtaining Spanish residency, immigration experts advise seeking the assistance of a law firm that specialises in foreigners who reside in Spain, whether these foreigners are currently resident in the country or not. This is the case with Tejada Solicitors, a law firm that helps British citizens who have doubts or questions when carrying out the residency process.
In any case, foreign citizens who want to obtain residence in Spain must provide the EX18 form, in addition to paying the corresponding fee. On the other hand, they must also prove that they have sufficient financial means for their stay in the country. Even so, each case is different, so it is best to seek advice from a law firm.