Means tested EU immigration

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03 Dec 2014 15:31 by paulsimkiss Star rating in Thailand & Spain. 58 posts Send private message

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Is it true that Spanish authorities are means testing EU immigrants before allowing them to remain in Spain and register on the Spanish foreign register?.

If so is this legal under EU law?.

What criteria is the means test?.

Has any person been expelled and deported for not meeting the criteria?.

This message was last edited by paulsimkiss on 03/12/2014.

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03 Dec 2014 16:15 by bobaol Star rating. 2260 posts Send private message

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If you intend to settle in Spain for more than 3 months then you can apply to go on the EU register of foreign nationals. This is the old residency which is now only valid for non-EU nationals.

;All the details are shown on this government site.

EU rules do lay down that anyone wishing to reside for over 3 months may have to show that they have sufficient funds to maintain themselves and their families plus access to healthcare without being a drain on the social services of the country. Most EU countries do this so, yes, it is perfectly legal under the EU rules. If you read the post on UK leaving the EU this has been discussed and I'm still at a loss as to why UK seems unique in not applying these rules.

So saying, I took some friends to Elche a little while back to do this and they weren't asked for financial means but were asked how they would cope with the healthcare provisions.

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03 Dec 2014 16:52 by paulsimkiss Star rating in Thailand & Spain. 58 posts Send private message

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What criteria is the means test?. 1 euro 100 euro 1,000 euro or a million euro?

Has any person been expelled and deported for not meeting the criteria?.

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03 Dec 2014 17:50 by GB45 Star rating in Wiltshire and holida.... 130 posts Send private message

It's an eminently sensible rule and most of us who live in the UK wish that we would impement it. I'm not sure that there is a set amount that you must show as income, just enough that you would be able to support yourself and any dependents. It's in your own interest anyway to have enough money as you would not get any help from Spain. Also private healthcare is essential for those under retirement age, unless you are working and contributing to the Spanish system.

No idea if anyone has been expelled for not meeting the criteria.

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03 Dec 2014 17:51 by bobaol Star rating. 2260 posts Send private message

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The EU doesn't lay down a lower limit. It would depend on your circumstances. For example, having a contract to work is sufficient to show financial means. For pensioners, it should be at least the minimum pension payments in Spain which is €432 per person per month (below that figure a Spaniard is entitled to free health and social security benefits). A bank account or a credit card limit of around €6,000 has also been mentioned but, as I said, the couple I took to Elche weren't even asked for proof of income.

These rules actually came in through the EU over 5 years ago but Spain opted out of them. They implemented them in 2012 and are now in line with most other EU countries.

I wouldn't think anyone has been told to leave. It wouldn't be retrospective (that is, if you are already on the register then there would be no need to prove your income) and those applying since would remain as non-resident if they don't meet the requirements..

The EU rules on movement are only for the first 3 months (and always have been).

The actual Royal Decree is here but it's in Spanish and a pdf file.


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03 Dec 2014 18:38 by paulsimkiss Star rating in Thailand & Spain. 58 posts Send private message

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So nobody realy knows. Just turn up and hope. What a good system.

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04 Dec 2014 11:47 by tamaraessex Star rating in Colmenar, Malaga. 508 posts Send private message

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All the advice focusses on needing around 500€ a month income, or a lump sum of around 6,000€.  If showing income, you have to show three months of bank statements demonstrating the income.  If showing a lump sum you have to ask your bank for an "average balance statement" which is standard on their systems, and shows the average balance over the past three months.  So the money needs to be sitting there for the three months prior to your application to sign the EU Foreigners' Register.  I wanted to do mine a bit faster than three months after hearing about the finance requirement, so I put MORE than that in the bank, so that the three-month average would still come out as enough, even though the large lump sum was only there for two months (hope that makes sense).  And yes, they asked for the bank statements when I signed.  

More info here - the full story of what was needed :-)


 Blog about settling into a village house in the Axarquía.

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06 Dec 2014 10:21 by paulsimkiss Star rating in Thailand & Spain. 58 posts Send private message

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The Spanish rules do seem sensible, but I suppose you do not have to register. Who really knows when you come and go, your passport is not stamped. You can use the EHIC using a relatives address in the UK.

Bit different to the current UK system where a penniless tramp can arrive, book their shop doorway accommodation and claim benefits from day one. Of course they can’t claim benefits for the dog, but they still get to keep the money thrown in the basket without reduction of state (tax payer) hand outs.

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06 Dec 2014 13:27 by Tadd1966 Star rating in Los Montesinos. 1757 posts Send private message

~~your passport is not stamped.

If you travel dircet to Spain via air or ferry you ahve to supply your passport details (Advanced Passeneger Information API) prior to travel so yes "they" will know if you come and go

However, if you arrive from say France or Portugal as a passenger in a car (or drive a car not owned by you - with permission of course!)  you will not be checked at a border so "they " will not know

Using an EHIC will give you acces to a GP and emergency teratment but not to specialists or long term treatment so be careful if you rely on EHIC

I agree the UK system is far too generoeus for all - including Brits.



“The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance; it is the illusion of knowledge”

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