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Sombrillas en la playa de San Lorenzo

If you are planning to move to Gijón and it is going to be your first time living in Spain, most likely you will need to get the NIE. The NIE (Número de Identificación de Extranjero) is a Spanish identification number assigned by the Spanish government to any foreigner. Both EU citizens and non-EU citizens get issued a NIE.

This number is personal and unique, and it is a legal requirement for all citizens with financial, professional or social affairs in Spain. This will be your identification number in Spain forever and it will be used to track any financial, legal or official activity that you will do in the country.

Why do you need a NIE?

You will be required to show your Spanish identification number:

  • To open a bank account
  • To work in Spain
  • To establish a business
  • To open utility accounts (phone, ADSL, water, electricity…)
  • To file taxes
  • To buy, sell and insure properties
  • To apply for driver’s license

How do you get the NIE?

In order to get your NIE, you should go to the police station located in Pl. Padre Máximo González, s/n (33212 – Gijón). Once there, you will have to deal with the foreigners office (oficina de Extranjería), having ready the next documents (EU citizens):

  • Application form EX 15 (You can download it here)
  • Passport (original and copy)
  • 2 Recent passport photos
  • Adress in Spain
  • Application fee of 9,45€

Usually, you will be able to get your temporary NIE in one single visit. After submitting all the documents, you will be given a certificate of application (already including your NIE number) and also a paper indicating when you can collect the official card. This document will be valid for a period of 3 months. If you are planning to stay more, you will have to come back to the office to prove why you need a longer one (job contract, property contract, studies, Seguridad Social, etc…).

If you have any doubts or questions about this topic, don’t hesitate to leave a comment on the post.

  • Vernon 19th January 2019

    Thank’s for this great info. Two questions:

    How to you get an NIE if you need an address in Spain, which you need an NIE to get in the first place? Chickenegg

    My wife is an EU (German) citizen, but I’m a US citizen. Do you know if requirements differ?

    Thanks so much,


  • inheritancespain 21st March 2019

    Dear Vernon,
    a non-resident can get a NIE even without an address in Spain.
    A non-resident must designate a representative here for tax purposes, and the address of that representative will be your address in Spain for all the paperwork. So it is advisable to choose a professional such as a lawyer to act as your representative.

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