Spain issues new residency card for British citizens

The Local Spain
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Spain issues new residency card for British citizens
An anti-Brexit protest in Spain. AFP

Spain has issued a new residency card system for UK citizens living in the country before the end of the Brexit transition period on December 31st. Here's what you need to know.


The TIE (Foreigners Identification Card) will state that British residents living in Spain have all the rights to residency, healthcare or social security which are guaranteed under the Withdrawal Agreement. 

Britons living in Spain who already have residency can apply for the new card which will mean they will no longer have to present their passports with current NIE green cards or A4 sheets. 

Those living in Spain who do not have residency have until 31 December to apply for residency permission then can apply for the card. 

The measure was announced in the Official Bulletin of State, which outlines government decisions, on Saturday. 

The order states that UK citizens with the new TIE card “will not have to ask for a new residency permission or new documents but will have the right to receive a document of residency which expressly states their position as a beneficiary of the Withdrawal Agreement”, the order says.


Nigel Aston, president of Eurocitizens, told The Local: “I think this is a good thing because for those who have this new residence card, it will eliminate the need to use a passport when they have to do anything.

“It proves that the holder is entitled to the rights granted in the Withdrawal Agreement.”

HMA Hugh Elliott welcomed its introduction. He also clarified what it means for UK nationals in a short video here saying:

Hugh Elliott, British Ambassador in Madrid, said : “We’ve seen lots of questions and concerns on social media, so I want to underline two key points.

Q&A: What Brits in Spain need to know about the new Brexit-friendly residency card

"First, I want to assure you that all British nationals, who are legally resident in Spain by the end of this year, will have their rights protected, including the right to live and work here, and lifelong access to healthcare for UK state pensioners, including those who claim a pension in the future.

"And second, whether you already have the green residency certificate – A4 or credit card-sized version – or in the future the TIE, they are equally valid in demonstrating your residence status and your rights as a beneficiary of the Withdrawal Agreement. Almost 360,000 British people are already registered here in Spain.

"And whilst you may choose to exchange your current certificate for a TIE at some point in the future, there is no requirement to do so. The green residency document gives you the same rights as the new TIE card. So please be assured on that point."


The British Embassy is holding a Facebook Live Q&A at 19:00 (not 8pm as was first stated) on Wednesday 8 July. Please join via It will also be available to watch afterwards.

Information for UK nationals is available at – sign up for email alerts to be kept updated. This is in the process of being updated to reflect the new process.  








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