The UK is now officially out of the EU and this will impact the estimated 300,000 Britons residing in Spain.
British citizens are now considered non-EU foreigners in Spain, with all its consequences for immigration and tax implications.
Our international tax specialist partner Antonio Rodriguez gives readers an outline of what to expect.
British citizens arriving after the transitional period.
As you might or might not know, Brexit will affect British citizens; those arriving after the end of the transitional period will be subject to the general regime for non-EU foreigners, unless the UK and the EU negotiate a future mobility plan within the Future Relationship Agreement. So, any British citizen who wants to reside in Spain will have to carry out all the bureaucratic procedures like any other non-EU citizen. They will need to start considering other options such as: non-lucrative visa, golden visa or a regular work permit… In general, a more rigorous requirement is to prove and declare officially that you have adequate financial means to support yourself during the stay. For practical purposes of circulation within the European territory, you need to know that the documents of residence in the United Kingdom will no longer exempt the holder from the obligation of transit visa at any airport in the Union.
British citizens arriving before December 31st 2020
Lucia Goy, Lawyer from Harvard Law School and CEO of Goy Abogados in Madrid, experts on immigration, summarize the situation of British Citizens already registered in Spain by saying “they will keep both the residence card and the rights granted by it and it is advisable, in order to avoid future problems, to register as residents in Spain and obtain the EU registration certificate.”
This procedure is especially relevant for retirees, since right now, all that is required is proof of income of at least 600 euros per month, a requirement that is easy to meet because their pension usually covers it. But in order to reside in Spain after December 31st, it will be necessary to apply for a non-profit visa, under the minimum income requirement of 2,200 euros per month.
British citizens who have resided in Spain for a period of 5 years or more, are advised to apply as soon as possible for a permanent E.U. card, which is valid for life. After 10 years residing in Spain, they can apply for the Spanish nationality, but they must renounce your British nationality after being granted Spanish nationality.
Keep in mind that, if a British resident in Spain registers at their local health center, they will continue to maintain their health rights in Spain.
For tax purposes
In Spain, for tax purposes, citizens are classified in two different groups: residents and non-residents. And there are different tax rules for this last group of non-residents. A resident -for tax purposes- is the person who lives in Spain 183 days in the same natural year, never mind his/her immigration status.
All residents in Spain are subject to report their assets abroad, filing Modelo 720
between January 1st and March 30th of the following year to become resident and pay taxes in Spain over their worldwide income filing the IRPF Modelo 100 before the end of June of the following year.
The E.U. non-resident citizens are taxed in Spain 19% flat, over any income originated in Spain, while British citizens, as non-EU citizens, will be taxed 24%. This includes rental income without the possibility of deducting any type of expenses. In case the property is not a rental you will be subject to “imputación de rentas” at 24% of course.
Subject to Wealth Tax are all British citizens as non-EU citizens owning Real Estate and/or assets in Spain, for a total value of €700,000 (or more), and the non-residents must comply by national legislation, instead of being able to choose the regional legislation, which offers some advantages.
It is important to know, for UK nationals residing in Spain, that it is not mandatory to apply for a new residency document if you already have one, but they need to have or obtain the registration certificates -“Green card”- and family cards of EU citizens, which will serve to prove their legal residence in Spain after December 31st, 2020, and benefit from the provisions of the Withdrawal Agreement. Taxation for non-resident British Citizens will increase radically.
If you need any further information on immigration issues, do not hesitate to contact Goy Abogados, at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have questions regarding taxes please contact US Tax Consultants at email@example.com.