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Will the 90 Days in 180 Day Rule Become a Reality for UK Nationals visiting Spain?

Yesterday the British government put forward their proposals for the future relationship with the EU.

In the draft there is no mention of any special dispensation for visits to the UK exceeding the 90 day period, furthermore going further with the suggestion that short visits would be considered for business purposes. The decision for the future relationship should be reciprocal. This suggests that visits to Spain by UK Nationals will likely be limited.

The extracts below are taken from the UK&EU proposals.

UK Proposal:

Mobility and Social Security Coordination

Temporary Entry and Stay for Business Purposes

The Agreement should also promote trade in services where it is facilitated by the temporary entry and stay of natural persons for business purposes (otherwise known as ‘Mode 4’).

The Future Relationship with the EU | The UK’s Approach to Negotiations

The Agreement should include commitments that will provide legal certainty to service suppliers and businesses who move employees between the UK and EU, as well as investors.

The Agreement could build on the Mode 4 commitments in CETA and the EU-Japan EPA, and should cover: short-term business visitors, including for establishment purposes; intra-company transferees; contractual service suppliers; and independent (i.e. self-employed) professionals and investors.

Both parties should clearly set out, on a reciprocal basis, the activities that can be undertaken by a short-term business visitor.

The provisions of the Agreement will be without prejudice to, and consistent with, the UK’s recently announced points-system

Many policy areas – for example foreign policy or immigration policy – are for the UK Government to determine, within a framework of broader friendly dialogue and cooperation between the UK and the EU: they do not require an institutionalised relationship. That approach is reflected in the arrangements set out in this paper.

EU Proposal:

MOBILITY

Noting that the United Kingdom has decided that the principle of free movement of persons between the Union and the United Kingdom will no longer apply, the Parties should establish mobility arrangements, as set out below.

The mobility arrangements will be based on non-discrimination between the Union’s Member States and full reciprocity.

In this context, the Parties aim to provide, through their domestic laws, for visa-free travel for short-term visits.

The Parties agree to consider conditions for entry and stay for purposes such as research, study, training and youth exchanges.

The Parties also agree to consider addressing social security coordination in the light of future movement of persons.

In line with their applicable laws, the Parties will explore the possibility to facilitate the crossing of their respective borders for legitimate travel.

Any provisions will be without prejudice to the Common Travel Area (CTA) arrangements as they apply between the United Kingdom and Ireland.

To support mobility, the Parties confirm their commitment to the effective application of the existing international family law instruments to which they are parties. The Union notes the United Kingdom’s intention to accede to the 2007 Hague Maintenance Convention to which it is currently bound through its Union membership.

The Parties will explore options for judicial cooperation in matrimonial, parental responsibility and other related matters.

These arrangements would be in addition to commitments on temporary entry and stay of natural persons for business purposes in defined areas as referred to in Section III of this Part. Those commitments should not be nullified by the right of either Party to apply their respective laws, regulations and requirements regarding entry, stay and work.

Note* Brought to our attention by one of our members, we felt we should add that in the UKs new immigration law, the option for EU/EEA citizens to visit the UK without a visa for six months in any year is still an option. This is appearing to prove encouraging to those known as swallows who spend the winters in Spain. We should add the six-month rule is a UK domestic law and Spain has its own royal decree allowing visitors to stay for three months before registering for residency. The 90 day in any 180 days is an EU Directive which is a regulation for all EU member states and pertaining to non-EU citizens. Without wishing to damp down any enthusiasm, we need to look at the facts and that is that the UK and the EU both allow six months visits to their countries but in different formats.

Please note: The information provided is based upon our understanding of current legislation. It is not legal advice but is provided freely to enable you to be properly informed. We recommend that if you are considering taking action, you should seek professional advice.

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