Our Blog is designed to keep you up to date with developments of Spanish law and news.
You will also find some of our Top Tips for different areas of law to give you some key advice when requiring legal services in Spain. If you cannot find what you are looking for or would like to discuss a matter further, please contact us.
Historic letter from Theresa May starts the two year negotiation process for the UK to leave the EU.
And the part which refers to those of us living and working in the European Union:-
“We should always put our citizens first. There is obvious complexity in the discussions we are about to undertake, but we should remember that at the heart of our talks are the interests of all our citizens. There are, for example, many citizens of the remaining member states living in the United Kingdom, and UK citizens living elsewhere in the European Union, and we should aim to strike an early agreement about their rights.”
Click to read full letter to the President of the EU Council, Donald Tusk.
For the 8th year running, My Lawyer in Spain will be again taking a stand at A Place in the Sun Exhibition taking place from 5 – 7 May in Olympia, London.
Whilst the outcome of BREXIT is yet unknown, the latest report from Lucas Fox showed that the British continue to make up the biggest proportion of foreign buyers in Spain (11%)
Alex will be taking part again in the Spanish Buying Seminar at the exhibition using his wealth of knowledge to talk about buying property in Spain.
Alex Radford said “We are delighted to be at A Place in the Sun again this year and looking forward to advising clients on the best ways to move to Spain regardless of the outcome of Brexit. After the surprise referendum result, many British buyers are saying they will still buy a Spanish property because it is their dream and they cannot wait for politicians to sort out the Brexit aftermath.”
To obtain FREE tickets for the exhibition please follow this link. And don’t forget to come by the My Lawyer In Spain stand to collect your free information pack!
Brexit means Brexit said Theresa May. The Brexit Bill has passed through the Houses of Parliament and Article 50 is expected to be invoked imminently.
As a British resident in Spain of more than 26 years, I ask, will anything change for us expats living in Spain?
Many British residents in Spain are worried about the effects of Brexit – of course they are. Many Brits looking to move to Spain are waiting to see what will happen – of course they are! However many Brits who have decided to buy a property in Spain, or move to Spain are still following through with their plans, regardless of Brexit.
What is the best thing to do if you are considering a move to Spain?
Well, my parents moved us to Spain in 1981. The UK had joined the EEC in 1973 and Spain & Portugal joined five years after we had been living in Spain in 1986. What was the difference between 1981 and 1986 when Spain were not members of the EEC but Britain was? The only difference then was that every six months we had to renew our residency by leaving the country and having our passport stamped. This involved a pleasant day trip to Portugal and a boat ride across the Guadiana river. We returned to Spain with a Portuguese passport stamp and applied for a new six month residency. Also as foreigners under the age of 65 living and working in Spain we had to have private medical insurance. Other than that, life in Spain continued and we were warmly welcomed by the Spanish.
It is understandable that Brits living in Spain are worried about the effects of Brexit. Top of the agenda is healthcare provision so that someone over the age of 65 can receive free medical care in their local Spanish hospital. Also will a visa be required for us Brits to live or work in Spain? The UK would sign a deal today guaranteeing the rights of EU citizens in the UK in exchange for reciprocal rights for Brits living in Europe. However until article 50 is invoked and negotiations are under way, nothing can be negotiated and nothing will in fact change until the UK does actually leave the EU which is expected in March 2019. Having said that, with 3 million EU citizens in the UK and 1.2 million Brits living across Europe, it is highly likely that an agreement will be put in place quickly. Even if it is not and the UK crashes out of the EU without an agreement, it would be in Spain’s and the UK’s interests to put in place an agreement guaranteeing reciprocal rights for their citizens! After all, last year more than 16.9 million Brits visited Spain, a number that is only likely to increase, and the Brits living in Spain bring welcome tax revenues for the Spanish coffers!
A further concern for British pensioners is will their pension continue to be updated in line with inflation?
This is a UK issue rather than an EU issue and one that all British pensioners across Europe should monitor with interest and write to their local MP’s about!
In the next couple of years and during the negotiations we are going to see a lot of headlines that could cause us concern. However until either a deal is reached or the UK leaves the EU, nothing will change. In the meantime the team at My Lawyer in Spain will be monitoring the following items of particular interest for our clients:
- Will the rates of annual taxation for British owners of Spanish property increase?
- Will the rates of inheritance tax for British heirs of Spanish assets increase?
- Will the rates of capital gains tax for British sellers of Spanish property increase?
- Will a visa be required to live or work in Spain?
- Will healthcare be provided to British pensioners?
- Will British companies be treated differently in Spain?
This British life in Spain has a long and special history and has withstood greater challenges than Brexit. Yes after Brexit life in Spain may be slightly different! But the changes will not affect the amount of days of sunshine Spain enjoys, the easy access from all UK airports to Spain, the fabulous Spanish countryside, beaches, culture and gastronomy as well as the warm welcome we receive. Regardless of Brexit, Brits will continue to come to Spain!
Alex Radford is a qualified English Solicitor & Spanish Abogado and a Founding Partner of My Lawyer in Spain. Alex lives in Torrox Costa with his wife and twin daughters!
MLS were proud to be involved in organising the recent visit of Simon Manley CMG, HM British Ambassador to Spain, to the English Cemetery in Malaga and to the Brexit Conference in Marbella.
We are proud to have been invited to attend the Focus Group on Brexit organised by the Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO).