The Spanish Government has passed legislation, applicable as of 24th April 2012 which changes the procedures for obtaining a NIE and residence in Spain for EU nationals.
In 2007, the government passed legislation to regulate the free movement of EU nationals in Spain (Article 7 of the Real Decreto 240/2007) which was intended to give effect to European Directives. However, the Spanish legislation did not include all the requirements set out article 7 of the European Directive 2004/38/CE, and as a result, it became impossible to guarantee the reimbursement of public healthcare expenses relating for EU nationals. In order to address these problems, legislative reforms have been passed to close this loophole.
The legislative reforms are covered in Real Decreto 16/2012, which modifies Real Decreto 240/2007 by stating that EU nationals who wish to reside in Spain for a period of over three months must meet the following requirements:
This was extended in legislation Orden PRE/1490/2012 which outlines the specific documents that need to be submitted with the application. Individuals who do not provide any of the supporting documents when applying for a NIE number will be issued with a non-resident NIE which expires after three months.