CAMPAIGNS by both the British and Spanish governments in Spain calling on British expats to get their paperwork in order are proving successful. There are now 381,000 British citizens living legally in Spain, according to figures from the British Embassy yesterday. In September 2019 this figure stood at 365,967.

The rise is even more pronounced if you take into account that a considerable number of British expats have returned to Britain over recent years because of fears over Brexit and other issues.

To be honest I am quite amazed at the relatively large number of expats who were living here who didn’t have their paperwork in order eventhough the process was very simple. Spain had made it clear (politely) that anyone who didn’t have their paperwork in order after Brexit could be invited to leave.

Many news outlets including the Bulletin reported that up to 500 Britons across Spain were facing deportation because they did not have a residence permit or that it had been rejected by the Spanish government. The fear factor has finally pushed some Britons into action and they have applied for their TIE residence cards.

Overall, the whole process has run relatively smoothly. There have been some teething problems but it must be remembered that Spain has issued thousands of TIE cards to British citizens. The days of the so-called legal population and those who were “floating” have gone. If your paperwork is not in order you have a problem.