Guide To Getting NIE In Spain

The NIE is an important document for residents in Spain. Not only does it allow you to reside in Spain legally, but it will also give you the possibility of:

  • Registering with the Social Security
  • Open a bank account at any bank
  • Opening a business
  • Working in Spain
  • Buying a car or a home
  • Making the declaration of the income
  • Access to public services

As you can see, it is impossible not to have a NIE if you plan to live in Spain in the medium or long term. It is equivalent to a passport, but Spanish.


The NIE is required for all foreigners who wish to live in Spain or reside more than 3 months in the country for any of the following reasons:

  • Working in a Spanish company or making a stay or internship agreement.
  • Working as a freelancer or freelancer in Spain.
  • Meet or accompany a family member in Spain.

If none of these situations respond to your circumstances and you visit the country for at least 90 days, it is not obligatory to take the NIE.

How to obtain the NIE in Spain

In order to obtain your NIE you have two possibilities: to apply for it in Spain or in your country.

What are the steps to obtain the NIE?

  • Request your appointment
  • Complete and submit all necessary documentation
  • Go to the office of your previous appointment with your documents
  • Pay the fee for the NIE
  • Return to the office to leave the proof of payment of the fee
  • Going out with your NIE!

Seems easy, doesn’t it? So why do people say it’s so hard? Well, you have to know that there are different ways to get your NIE and it all depends on:

  • Where you’re from
  • Why are you in Spain?
  • Where you live in Spain
  • Where to apply for your NIE

Here we explain all the options.

Obtain the NIE in your country: Spanish Embassy or Consulate

Obtaining a NIE in your home country is often much easier than doing so when you are already in Spain. However, it is necessary to do it well in advance, at least one or two months. All you have to do is contact the nearest Spanish embassy and they will tell you the documents you have to send them.

Once your application has been processed, you will receive your NIE within a few days.

Obtaining the NIE in Spain if you are from the EU

Getting a NIE date can become a real obstacle course, especially in summer and in cities like Barcelona. The first step is to go to the official website of the Spanish Government. These are the steps to follow:

  • Select the province (Example: Barcelona)
    Click on EU Certificates.
    Select EU CNP Certificates and click OK.
  • You will then be taken to a new page where you will find the documents you need to submit (which we’ll discuss later), click on Enter.
  • Select Passport/ID and enter your passport or ID number. Then enter your first and last name and then copy the text from the image.
  • Then click make an appointment.
  • The address where you can pick up your NIE will appear and click Next.
    Enter your phone number, email address and the reason for your appointment (Write NIE Request). Click next.
  • Choose your appointment and click on next.
  • You will enter a new page. You have to accept (1) “I agree with the information shown on the screen” (2) “I would like to receive an email with the details of my appointment” and click on Confirm.
  • The confirmation of your appointment will appear.
  • Click on print. The same confirmation of the appointment will be sent to you by email. We know of cases of people who have not received such mail so it is important that you print it.

Citizens Outside the European Union (EU)

For everyone who comes to Spain from a country outside the European Union, getting the NIE is a little more complicated.

In fact, you already have your foreigner number on your visa. So why do I have to apply? Well, citizens from outside the EU need one more document to live in Spain: the TIE. To obtain it, you will have to follow the steps to obtain the NIE, but in reality you will have the TIE.

The first step will be to request your appointment in advance, just like citizens coming from a European Union country. There is only one difference, small but very important. At the time of your appointment request, follow the same steps explained in the paragraph for EU citizens but without clicking on EU Certificates. The Barcelona office that handles NIE for non-EU citizens is the Aliens Office at Rambla Guipúscoa, 74 – Barcelona.


In order to obtain the NIE in Spain, you will have to fulfill the following requirements.

  • Proof of previous appointment.
  • Passport or identity card from your country of origin.
  • Form EX-15 of Application for Foreinger Identity Number.
  • Completed and signed fee.

This are the documents to justify the NIE application depending on each case.

  • Working in a Spanish company: Employment contract, previous contract or document accrediting registration with the Spanish Social Security as a worker.
  • Freelance worker in Spain: Inscription in the Census of Economic Activities or Inscription in the Mercantile Registry or Document that accredits the inscription in the Spanish Social Security as a freelance worker.
  • Student: Proof of enrollment in a Spanish university, European Health Card and proof of sufficient economic resources. Erasmus students simply have to provide documentation that proves their participation in the program.
  • Training: Certificate of the training agreement.
  • Meeting or accompanying a family member in Spain: Proof of family ties, Evidence that the family member works in Spain, and Proof of sufficient financial resources.

Last step when getting the NIE.

Whether or not you are an EU citizen, the third step is to go to the appointment with your documents and a lot of patience. Here you will have to take a number and wait your turn.

You will have to pay a fee of more or less 10 € that same day, in any bank, for the Model 790 Code 012. Then, go back to the office and without queuing again, deliver the receipt.

Incredibly…you’ll get your NIE!

12 thoughts on “Guide To Getting NIE In Spain”

  1. Hi, I am new in Spain and want to apply for NIE.
    where and how do I get an appointment?
    what is the official website of the Spanish Government?
    can someone please help

  2. Hello!
    I’m hoping to purchase a property that will satisfy the requirements for the Spanish Golden Visa. Do I still need to obtain the NIE before the purchase.

  3. Hola!

    Mi pareja y yo estamos planeando mudarnos a vivir juntos en Espana desde Taiwán. Ella es Taiwanesa y yo soy Espanol, actualmente trabajando en Taiwán. Me gustaría saber si es posible solicitar NIE para ella sin tener visa de larga duración y cuales son los pasos a seguir.

    Muchas gracias de antemano por vuestra ayuda.

    Saludos cordiales,

  4. Is Spanish address required on the application for NIE (form EX-15)?
    I’m a citizen of EU and plan to apply for NIE at Spanish Consulate.
    When I obtain NIE, I will travel to Spain to look for a property to purchase.


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