Following on from the 11th-hour agreement between the United Kingdom and Spain to keep Gibraltar in the Schengen Zone, Spanish authorities say getting a TIE card would help with crossing borders.
Spain’s Secretary of State for Migration Hana Jalloul and British Ambassador to Spain Hugh Elliott shared a video with words of reassurance and advice for Britons in Spain before the UK leaves Europe.
“I know that many of you have built your homes here, and we want you to stay. You are part of the Spanish family. You are part of us,” Jalloul said.
“As I said in July, this is, and will always be your home… my key message is, as long as you were legally living here before December 31st, your rights will be protected and recognized in Spain.”
The ‘Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero’ (TIE) was mentioned as an option for people who hold the old green A4 residency document in the video.
“More than 50,000 British citizens have applied for the new TIE card,” Jalloul stated.
“The Spanish Government would like to keep on encouraging British Nationals to exchange their green residency document for the new biometric TIE card as it may speed up administrative processes and, especially in the current situation regarding border crossings.”
With travel between the UK and Spain expected to get more difficult following Brexit, both the Spanish and British governments want to encourage people resident in Spain to get the new scannable biometric document that also serves as a photo I.D. Having the new credit card-sized proof of residency will speed up times spent at border crossings, especially in countries that are not familiar with the green A4 document.
“It’s important to be very clear – if you already have a green residency certificate, this document remains valid proof of your residency and of your rights under the Withdrawal Agreement,” British Ambassador to Spain Hugh Elliott stressed.
“It is not obligatory to exchange it. There is no hard deadline to exchange it either.”
“I know that some people have had challenges using their green certificate, for example, when going to the bank. So, the Spanish government is creating a document that they will share with the relevant authorities and that UK nationals can download.
This is good news for holders of the A4 certificate as it clears up any confusion regarding the green A4s validity.