Advice to UK residents in Spain after the “Brexit” referendum

It’s easy to understand why any UK expats resident in Spain will be nervous at the result of the June 23rd referendum, where the people of the UK voted to leave the European Union.

However, my advice is not to panic at all, as there has been absolutely no change yet in any laws, rights or regulations.

I would recommend that you guard any existing paperwork which proves your entitlement to residency. It is almost certain that the UK and Spain will do everything possible to protect the residence rights of all Spanish citizens in the UK and vice versa.
It could be that you will need to show that you had that right prior to a certain date, so if you do not have a “Certificado de registro como residente comunitario” saying that you have residence “con cáracter permanente” I suggest that you get one now.

The government are unlikely to trigger article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty until the end of the year and it will be 2 years more until the UK actually leaves. Politicians in the UK are currently talking about January 2019 as a possible target date for the exit of the UK from the EU.

If you intend to return to live in the UK, the uncertainty is likely to affect any sale of Spanish property to UK buyers, but many buyers of property in Spain are now from other European countries, such as Belgium, Ireland and Northern Europe, so there is still a good chance of a sale. Ensure that your agent is targeting countries in Europe, as well as the UK.

So, please don’t worry, nothing has changed yet and there will be lots of notice and negotiation prior to any significant changes taking place.  This whole process is going to take a lot of time.

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