Now the UK has left the EU

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March 20

The Spanish newspapers report many new problems for British Expatriates in Spain – or those planning to move here – as the UK has left the EU.

I wished to renew my gun licence after three years and was told by the Guardia Civil that I now need to get a police report detailing any previous convictions in the UK (I have lived in Spain for 16 years).

I understand also that any UK nationals wishing to buy or sell property in the Vega Baja area will have a similar problem.

Legislation (put in place by General Franco in 1975) is still in force and requires non-EU buyers of properties within range of strategic defence points to obtain a special permit from the defence ministry.

The process takes months and urban areas with large UK communities such as Torrevieja, Orihuela Costa, San Miguel de Salinas and Pilar de la Horadada are all affected, being within the vicinity of the Cartagena naval base, located about 60 kilometres away.

So far I have acquired the necessary police report from ACRO in the UK (not the British Embassy in Madrid) which will need to be ‘apostilled’ in the UK. (Apostille is a method of certifying a document for use in another country).

Also, the police report will need to be ‘certified’ by a UK notary prior to being apostilled. Cost so far approximately £175.

Then these documents will need to be translated into Spanish by a registered translator (traductor autorizado) for a cost of approximately €100. Then these documents can be presented to the relevant authority in Spain. Timescale, approximately two months.

Presumably this process also applies to any non-EU nationals in Spain? Please tell me if I am incorrect in my assessment of the situation, or is there a more efficient, and less costly way, of managing this process?

Andy Ogilvie

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