The Spanish government has published a decree adopting contingency measures in case of a no-deal Brexit.
The decree includes measures to manage UK nationals and the dependents who are already resident in Spain by the date the UK exits the EU, in the absence of a ratified Withdrawal Agreement:
- UK nationals and their dependent family members will have twenty-one months from Brexit day to apply for a new residence status.
- During this period, EU registration certificates held by UK nationals, as well as dependent residence cards held by non-EU family members of UK nationals, will remain valid, and UK nationals already in Spain will be allowed to continue their work or professional activity.
- Holders of the above documents will have to apply to replace these with a foreigner’s identity card.
- UK nationals and their non-EU family members who do not hold the above residence documents will have to apply for residence confirmation before applying for a foreigner’s identity card.
- Holders of long-term EU registration certificates or long-term residence cards will be able to apply directly for a long-term residence card for foreigners.
- UK nationals and their non-EU family members who do not hold the above long-term residence documents but have been continuously resident in Spain for five years may apply for a long-term residence permit.
- Further details of application procedures, including for cross-border workers, will be released once established by the Spanish Council of Ministers.
- Employers are advised to identify their UK population in EU member states (including their non-EU family members), to collect relevant supporting documents, and prepare and submit immigration applications in good time;
- Employers should reconsider business trips planned for April, and have a back-up plan;
- Employers are encouraged to contact their Newland Chase immigration specialist for case-specific advice;
- UK nationals in the EU are advised to gather documents in support of residence applications, for example: copies of passport data pages, marriage and birth certificates for accompanying family members, employment contracts or assignment letters, CV/resume, current job description, educational certificates, police clearance certificates, rental contract, proof of health insurance and payslips.