Tuesday, 15 Jun 2021

British expats warning: Spanish police reveal ‘you have 15 days to leave’ in crackdown

Lord Frost grilled on rights of British expats in the EU

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Amid the scramble to apply for permanent residency to live in Spain, expats have struggled to complete the complicated registration process. Although some nationals have lived in the country for a prolonged time, police have warned any expats without the proper documentation will be forced to leave without a TIE card. In order to complete the registration process, expats have turned to gestors who specialise in Spanish administrative bureaucracy.

However, some have been accused of fraudulent practices which have thrown UK nationals in hot water despite submitting the proper paperwork.

A police spokesman told Oliver Press: “All residency applications from every gestor in the province will be investigated in case of possible connections.

“The outcome of any appeal will be either ‘you have residency’ or ‘you have 15 days to leave Spain’.”

Post-Brexit, expats living in Spain must have or have applied for a TIE card if they arrived in the country after July 6 2020.

UK nationals will not need to apply for a TIE card if they have a green certificate to prove residency before July 2020.

Some, however, have spoken of their humiliating treatment by police after submitting their registration forms.

Despite living in Spain for five years, elderly expats spoke of being treated like common criminals by police.

When detained by police, two women were questioned over their residencia applications.

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Despite the grilling from the police, the two women, Jay Elliott, 66, and Lily Higgins, 71, claimed they had submitted the correct paperwork.

Speaking to Oliver Press, Ms Elliott claimed the pair had been wrongly arrested by the Spanish police.

She said: “We were wrongly arrested for submitting fake padrons, even though we put the correct ones in with our paperwork residencia.”

Her friend, also said: “I’ve never been in trouble before but here I am, being treated like a common criminal.

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“It’s humiliating.”

Another couple also spoke of being detained by police and held for questioning when they went to collect their TIE cards.

They said: “We were taken into a room, read our rights and told to explain why our old 2021 padron had been doctored to show a 2020 date – it was hell.”

Some residents have also complained about the complicated registration process and said there were no clear national guidelines.

Anne Hernandez said due to the complicated process, expats are being left vulnerable to certain gestors.

She said: “This case of fraudulent padrons being submitted is shocking but it’s by no means isolated.”

In order to help expats, the UK Government does have a list of qualified English-speaking gestors for UK nationals to use.

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