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What is the NIE in Spain? The first step.

The Foreigner Identification Number, better known as NIE, is one of the first documents that a foreigner needs to obtain when arriving in Spain for reasons of residence, work or investment. This personal, unique and exclusive number is necessary to carry out different procedures. In this article, we break down what the NIE is, how to obtain it and why it is crucial for your stay in Spain.

1 – What is the NIE?

The NIE is a unique identification number assigned to foreigners in Spain and is a form of tax identification issued by the Spanish authorities.

2 – What is the NIE for?

The NIE is essential for a wide range of procedures in Spain, from opening a bank account, signing an employment contract, buying or selling property, and for tax declarations, among others.

3 – Process for obtaining the NIE:

Appointment: It is necessary to get an appointment to apply for the NIE, which can be scheduled online through the official website: https://icp.administracionelectronica.gob.es/icpplus/index.html

Application: You will need to visit an immigration office or police station to apply for a NIE. It is important to bring the necessary documentation with you, such as your passport and the completed application form.

Required Documentation: For the application of the Foreigner Identification Number (NIE), European citizens must provide two recent photographs along with their passport, scanning only the first two pages that contain personal data. For non-European citizens, it is necessary to scan all the pages of the passport.

Payment of Fees: There is a fee associated with obtaining the NIE, which must be paid at a bank.

4 – Duration and Renewal:

The NIE does not have an expiry date, the number is permanent. However, the physical document containing it may have an expiry date and may require renewal.

5 – Loss or Theft:

In case of loss or theft of the physical NIE document, it is necessary to report it to the police and apply for a duplicate at the foreigners’ office or police station.

6 – How can we help you?

A lawyer can be of great help in the process of obtaining a NIE, especially if you are unfamiliar with the Spanish legal system. At Fontanals Solicitors we can help you prepare and review all the necessary documentation, schedule the appointment for the application, and provide advice on any complicated situations that may arise.

7 – Frequently Asked Questions:

Can I work in Spain without a NIE? No, the NIE is necessary to sign an employment contract in Spain.

Do I need a NIE to buy a property in Spain? Yes, you will need a NIE to complete a property purchase transaction in Spain.

How long does it take to obtain a NIE? The time can vary, but generally it can be obtained within 1 to 2 weeks after submitting the application.

Can I apply for a NIE if I am not in Spain? Yes, you can apply for a NIE from your home country through the Spanish consulate.

Does the NIE allow me to reside in Spain? No, the NIE is only an identification number. To reside in Spain, you will need to obtain a proper residence permit.

The NIE is a fundamental step and one of the first you will need to take when planning your stay in Spain. While the process is straightforward and usually quick, every situation is unique, and if you have questions or need assistance, we can help ensure that the process is completed smoothly and correctly.