The identification number of foreigners (NIE) is a unique and personal number that is assigned to the foreigners for the procedures before Spanish authorities.

What is the NIE for?

  • It is assigned automatically to those foreigners who pretend to obtain a permit to remain in Spain and do not need a visa.
  • It is necessary for those foreigners (included citizens of the UE) who, due to their economic, professional or social interests are related with Spain. If you want to set up a business, acquire a property or accept an inheritance, you must request a NIE.

To obtain it, it is not necessary to have a residence or be in Spain.

What is not a NIE?

  • It is not an identification card. Therefore, we advise foreigners to have their passports or other identification documents in possession while being in Spain.
  • It is not a visa or a residence permit, but it is a requirement for those foreigners that live in Spain.
  • It does not imply a fiscal residence. An individual becomes fiscal resident in Spain if he or she stays more than 183 days in the country, that is to say, more than half of a year.

How to obtain a NIE?

  • The quickest and most practical way is granting your trusted law firm of your power of attorney, authorizing them the request the NIE on your behalf. They will take care of all the process.
  • Another option for the applicant is to appear at the corresponding office for foreigners of the national police upon a request of prior appointment. It is a must to provide all the necessary documentation and proof that there is no irregular situation in Spain:
  • For those applicants who are abroad can appear to corresponding Spanish consulate and apply for a NIE, which will be issued on behalf of the “Ministerio del Interior” of Spain.

What happens if I do not have NIE?

It is common that foreigners have acquired a property years ago do not have a NIE, this is because before 2005 the Spanish authorities did not carry out a strict application of the regulation. Now they do.

We recommend those people to regularize their situation by obtaining a NIE, specially If they want to sell one of their properties and pay the corresponding taxes, for what a NIE is required.