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Why you should change your green residency document for the TIE

Updated: May 12, 2022

In June 2020 the Spanish authorities introduced a new residency document for UK residents. Making the switch to the new TIE has several advantages:

  • It is a biometric card that acts as an ID and a residency document

  • It shows clearly that you are under the scope of the Withdrawal Agreement

  • It is made of plastic, and therefore it is more durable than your old paper-made green EU Residence Certificate

  • It is accepted by all the administrative bodies in Spain

Since the end of the transition period (31 December 2020), UK nationals in Spain have been facing issues with several administrative procedures involving their residency documents. This is because some administrative bodies stopped recognizing the EU Residence Certificates (green residency document) as valid residency documents, and are requesting UK nationals to use a TIE.

In particular, the Employment Office (Oficina de Empleo) requested UK national with the old EU Resident Certificate to exchange it for the TIE by the end of 2021, as they would only ept the biometric document from 1 January 2022 onwards. This affects all UK nationals who are employed, on ERTE, or receiving an unemployment benefit. We are also aware that on some occasions EU Residence certificates are not being recognized by the police as valid residency documents for UK nationals when entering Spain, causing their passports to be stamped.

While the exchange of the EU Residence Certificate is not explicitly mandatory, we strongly advise UK nationals still holding one to do the exchange for the TIE. If you want to know more about how to exchange your green residency document for the TIE, check the guide on our website.

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