'Substantial minority' of Brits in Catalonia yet to get TIE card

Age In Spain attributes this to lack of knowledge and not wishing to deal with red tape

Person wears EU hat, as they wave the UK flag (by the EBS)
Person wears EU hat, as they wave the UK flag (by the EBS) / ACN

ACN | Barcelona

May 12, 2022 06:03 PM

Charitable organization Age In Spain has stated that there is still a “significant minority” of UK nationals living in Catalonia who are yet to get apply for their TIE (Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero) card, which replaced the previous paper EU Residence Certificate in July 2020 as proof of residency in Spain following Brexit.

Many others have already applied, but are yet to receive the card.

Conducting a poll on social media, the organization posited the reasons behind this trend, highlighting that some are worried about not wishing to deal with the bureaucracy, some do not know where to start, or do not deem it important enough, while others simply have not got round to it yet.

Many people feel that since the EU paper certificate is valid indefinitely, it’s preferable to the TIE, which needs to be renewed every ten years.

While this is the case, the paper certificate has the serious disadvantage of potentially not being accepted as proof of identity and residency.

As a result the charity, founded by Judy Arnold-Boakesge in the 1990s, and supported by the British government Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office, is appealing to those who have not applied to exchange their green document for a TIE, which has been available for Brits since July 6th 2020, to do so without delay.

“In particular, the Employment Office (Oficina de Empleo) have recognized only the TIE since January of this year,” said Helen Weir, chief executive of Age In Spain, adding that it is “imperative” for those in employment, on ERTE (furloughed), or receiving unemployment benefits to apply for a TIE.

Furthermore, a TIE makes internal travel in Spain easier, whilst also clearly showing that you are under the scope of Britain’s Withdrawal Agreement with the EU.

Dedicated to helping Brits in Spain

Following the UK’s departure from the European Union in 2020, Brits living abroad have had to go through more paperwork to legitimize their residency in another country.

Age In Spain, the first national charity in Spain dedicated to the welfare of English-speaking older people, aims to empower older people to lead fuller lives in their adopted country.

They provide support and access to services to meet changing needs and circumstances, enabling people to help themselves, integrate into local society and to access available support if needed.

Age in Spain can be contacted via telephone on +34 932 209 741, or via email with info@ageinspain.org, even if you do not speak Spanish.

For more information on living in Catalonia as a UK citizen post-brexit, check out our Q&A with Bradley de Abreu from Age in Spain, as well as the episode of our podcast, ‘Filling the Sink’ on the topic.