NON-EU citizens can apply for a non-residential NIE number or a residential TIE card.
The NIE number (Asignación de NIE) application can be done for specific administrative procedures such as buying property, starting a company, investment, or inheritance. The reason for the application must be proven with supporting documents (such as contrato de arras, notary letter, etc.). The NIE number is not a residence permit!
The TIE card (Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero) is an essential document for foreigners living in Spain. It serves as an identification card and provides legal proof of residence. If you are a NON-EU citizen planning to live, work, or study in Spain for an extended period, you will likely need to apply for a TIE card.
The TIE card application is done by fingerprinting appointment at the police office. TIE card application ia usually done in the following circumstances:
- Initial TIE application with visa: When a NON-EU citizen arrives in Spain for the first time or plans to stay for more than 90 days, they need to apply for an initial TIE, showing the corresponding visa at the appointment (student, work, non-lucrative, etc.).
- Initial TIE application with resolution: For example, if the residency application is done from Spain, instead of a visa in the passport, a favorable resolution is needed for the TIE application.
- Renewal of the current card: Only once the renewal is approved (resuelto favorable), the TIE application can be done. Note that, in most cases, the fingerprinting appointment can only be attended if the previous TIE card has already expired.
- Renewal of long-term card (tarjeta de larga duración) or permanent card (tarjeta permanente): In this case, the holder of this type of visa goes directly to the fingerprinting appointment (can be done 60 days prior to the expiry date of the card) without having to do the renewal application (resuelto favorable).
- Lost card (application for duplicate) with a police report.
Here are some of the most common residency options for NON-EU citizens (with visa or resolution):
- Work visa – Residence and Work Permit (Autorización de Residencia y Trabajo)
- Student visa – Student Residence Permit (Autorización de Residencia para Estudiantes)
- Non-Lucrative Residence Permit (Autorización de Residencia No Lucrativa): For individuals who have sufficient financial means to support themselves in Spain without engaging in any work or business activities.
- EU family member card (tarjeta de familiar comunitario): For NON-EU citizens joining an EU family member living in Spain.
- Family Reunification Permit (Reagrupación Familiar): For NON-EU citizens who want to join NON-EU family members who are already legal residents in Spain.
- Highly Skilled Residence Permit (Residencia para Trabajadores Altamente Cualificados): For NON-EU citizens with exceptional qualifications, skills, or expertise that are in demand in Spain.
- Golden visa – Investor Residence Permit (Autorización de Residencia para Inversionistas): For NON-EU citizens making a significant investment in Spain, such as buying real estate over €500,000 or making a business investment.
- Digital Nomad Visa: A new type of visa for people living in Spain and working remotely while maintaining their employment or freelance work usually in their home country.
- Other types such as Araigo (social, laboral, …), asylum (Asilo), …