The following letter from HMA Hugh Elliott is a text version of the video below.
HMA Hugh Elliott update on recent Brexit developments to British nationals living in Spain
HMA Hugh Elliott gives an update on recent Brexit developments to British nationals living in Spain, and explains what the extension means for citizens’ rights. He also gives advice on how to register as an overseas voter. Please share with others who might be interested!Posted by Brits in Spain on Thursday, October 31, 2019
You will all have seen that the EU has agreed the UK’s request for a further extension. This means that the UK will not now be leaving the EU on the 31st of October. The extension sets a new deadline of the 31st of January 2020.
I met with some of the citizens’ rights groups yesterday here in Madrid and we talked about recent developments, about the continuing feeling of uncertainty and about the concerns of British nationals living in Spain.
The three month extension removes the immediate threat of no deal and provides an opportunity for the deal – which protects citizens’ rights – to be ratified.
For as long as we remain in the EU, UK nationals will retain their full EU citizenship rights. So if you are a UK national living in Spain now, nothing will change on the 31st of October. The current rules on registration, healthcare and travelling will remain exactly as they are now.
However it is still important to be prepared for Brexit. The extension period is a good opportunity to make sure you, your friends and family are fully prepared.
So I would encourage you all to use this time to ensure you are correctly registered as resident in Spain and registered for healthcare. And to ensure that you have exchanged your driving licence and checked your passport validity.
Secondly, I’m sure you have seen in the media that a general election will be held on the 12th of December. If you are a UK National who has been here for less than 15 years you can register as an overseas voter (further information can be found at gov.uk/voting-when-abroad). The deadline to receive proxy vote applications will be the 4th of December.
The Embassy and our network of Consulates will keep you updated on further developments. We will continue holding outreach events – meetings, pop-up events in your local supermarket and the like; details are on our Living in Guide and on Facebook. Please do make sure you are signed up for the Living in Guide on gov.uk and stay in touch through our Brits in Spain Facebook page.
HMA Hugh Elliott
The British Embassy and its network of consulates in Spain work with local and expat partner organisations to assist British nationals.
Consular enquiries – 902 109 356 (in Spain) / +34 913 342 194 (outside Spain)
British nationals who need emergency assistance outside normal office hours should call +34 902 109 356 where they will be given details on how to proceed and how to contact a duty officer if needed.