NIE: The Essential Procedure being an expat in Spain.

Are you living in Spain? Or Planning to move over here?


If this is the case, this bit of info about the NIE, might interest you…



What’s the NIE?


The NIE stands for: Número de Identificación de Extranjeros/Identification Number for Foreigners.


20 Interesting situations where you will need the NIE:


1.       Buying/Selling a house.

2.       City Registration/Census certificate.

3.       Applying for legal aid.

4.       Registering your son/daughter to a School.

5.       Getting a Spanish Mobile Phone.

6.       Civil Registration.

7.       Paying taxes in Spain.

8.       Dealing with the Property Registry and Public Notaries.

9.       Requesting building license.

10.   Opening a Bank account.

11.   Signing a work contract.

12.   Buying/Selling a car.

13.   Applying for a mortgage.

14.   Procurement of supply services such as water, light, gas…etc.

15.   Applying for Scholarships and study grants.

16.   Opening a business and / or Being a freelancer.

17.   Having a healthcare card.

18.   Applying for unemployment benefit.

19.   Getting the driving license.

20.   Standardisation of University Degree


How to get it?


Not that long ago, I helped a lovely English family living in Valencia, with the procedure of getting the NIE for all the members.

And in this blog, I’ll explain about it and give you some tips….

Help_Elena Zurriaga_VAHelping with NIE procedures.

First of all, it’d be worthy to highlight that there are two types of forms to deal with this procedure. One to ask for the certificate number (EX15)  and another one to request the certificate of registration European membership (EX18). This, of course, will depend on your needs and how long you will be here for.

You can apply for the NIE through 3 different ways:

Your Consulate

Yourself, at the Police Station (Extranjeria Dept.)

Through a Legal Representative with a power of attorney

In our case, the family itself was the one dealing with it. I just made some previous arrangements and was the interpreter through the whole process.


What documents should I present with the form/s?


NIE_RULES_Elena Zurriaga_VAKnowing what the NIE’s for and the procedure


  • EX15 form and copy
  • Passport or ID
  • Informing of the reasons for stay (work, studies, family situation…)
  • Paying the correspondent taxes.


  • EX18 form and copy
  • Passport or ID
  • Documentary evidence of the reasons for stay (work, studies, family situation…)
  • Paying the correspondent taxes.

Period of Validity.

The certificate (EX15) has a valid period of 3 months and it is the first request.

Since when you apply for it, a number will be allocated to you and it’ll be the one you’ll be using for every procedure. This certificate can be renewed up to a limit.

However, if you are staying in the country for a longer period, it might be worthwhile to deal with the certificate of registration of European membership (EX18), as this certificate shall be valid for a period of 5 years.

Pay attention at non-European citizens, since they will need a residence permit and a visa for the procedure on top of the form’s requirements.

How long will it take to get it?

From the time the form is filled out and submitted, it might take 1 to 5 weeks, in our case it was a week and few days (we got the Xmas. Period) and be aware that always it should be picked up by the person itself or by the legal representative.


For extra information, I am leaving you a video link from Strong Weber, where you could see how to fill out the EX15 form, in English:



Hope all this info helps and you are most welcome to Spain!


2 thoughts on “NIE: The Essential Procedure being an expat in Spain.”

  1. Pleasure Elena! Hope you have found our group for members living in Valencia on here and on Facebook? Let me know if you need any help connecting 🙂

Comments are closed.