Brits In Spain Urged To Get TIE Card Ahead Of EU Border System

The British Embassy in Madrid has launched a campaign for British residents in Spain to exchange their green certificates for the TIE card introduced after the UK left the European Union in 2020.

The embassy have urged those who have not done so yet to “follow suit and get a TIE as soon as possible, ahead of the introduction of the EU’s new Entry Exit System (EES), expected in autumn this year”.

The embassy stressed that its “really important” to do ahead of the introduction of the new border control system.

There are an estimated 200,000 British nationals officially resident, but many did not exchange their old green Spanish residency certificates when the TIE was introduced.

“It’s really important that any British person who lives in Spain gets the TIE – not only because it is the most durable and dependable way to prove your rights in Spain, but also to avoid disruption at the border when the EU’s Entry Exit Scheme comes into force,” outgoing British Ambassador Hugh Elliott said in the statement to the press.

“We are working with the Spanish Government and the EU to prepare for the implementation of this new scheme, and we have requested that more TIE appointments are made available.”

The green certificate was intended for EU nationals but is considered an identity document without a valid passport while the newer TIE is a biometric residence card for non-EU residents in Spain.

“The biometric TIE proves that the holder is a Withdrawal Agreement beneficiary with the right to reside and work in Spain,” the embassy writes.

The EU’s new Entry Exit system is being rolled out later this year across all member states and will “require all non-EU short stay travellers to register via an automated system at the border. They will need to provide their name, passport details, biometric data (fingerprints and captured facial images) and the date and place of entry and exit upon entering Spain,” according to the UK Embassy.

“This will replace the current passport stamping at the border. These details will be held on file for three years, meaning Britons making repeat visits to Spain within a three-year period will not have to go through the same registration process each time.

“To be exempt from registering with the EES, British residents in the EU will need to show a valid uniform-format biometric card, which in Spain is the TIE.”

“The non-biometric Green Certificate, though a valid residency document in Spain, was issued prior to EU Exit and does not feature in the EU-UK Withdrawal Agreement or in Annex 22 of the Schengen Border Guard Handbook.

“Therefore, it is expected that Green Certificate holders may lose out on the chance to be exempt from registering.

“As a result, they may encounter difficulties and delays at the border, especially when entering other EU countries where the Green Certificate may not be recognised.”



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