NIE, Social Security & Residency in Spain

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By Nina Krol – TEFL Graduate September 2018

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Why might you need a NIE number

If you are currently in Málaga and completing your Trinity CertTESOL course at TEFL in Spain and planning to stay for a longer period, you might find that you need a NIE number for several reasons. Unfortunately, getting your NIE number is not always an easy process. To help you in your journey to getting this, I have written this blog to go through the necessary steps in the province of Málaga. At TEFL in Spain, they also offer a paid NIE Service so that you are assisted in getting your NIE number as well as having a Spanish translator present for the appointment.

What is the Spanish NIE number?

The Spanish NIE number, short for “numero de identificación de extranjero” is a foreigner identification number, a fiscal identification number for foreigners who want to stay more than 3 months in Spain. For example, after you have completed your Trinity CertTESOL course in Malaga and are looking for a job.


Social Security Number

I still had to schedule an appointment online ahead of time for the NIE at the police station. Prior to my appointment, I had to go to the Social Security office to obtain my social security number. There is no need to make an appointment ahead of time for this however, the office was quite busy, so I recommend getting there earlier in the morning when the office first opens to avoid a long queue. To get the social security number, you need to have:
  • a copy of your passport
  • original passport
  • application form filled out

*Here is a link to the EX18 form in English to help you complete it:

The application form can be picked up at the reception desk in the office and filled out on-site. The clerk that I worked with at the office was very quick, so the actual process of setting up my social security number, which is linked to my Polish (EU) passport, took about 10 minutes.

What Your Employer Needs

In terms of employment, most employers only need your passport details and the social security number to hire you and draw up a temporary employment contract.

How to get the NIE number

Once your employer provides you with a copy of the employment contract, you can take the contract, copy of your passport, original passport, and social security number to your appointment at the police station to obtain your NIE.
In addition, you need to fill out the:

Bring copies of these forms to the police station. These forms both need to be filled out online, downloaded, and printed.

Temporary Year-Long Residency

To apply for the temporary year-long residency, there is a fee of €12 which needs to be paid at a Unicaja bank. Bring all the forms and stamped receipt from the bank to the appointment at the police station. The clerk at the station will look through the forms, enter the information onto the computer, and will issue you the residency green card on the spot. The residency card will include the NIE number. You can then provide your employer with your NIE so that they can draw up a new copy of the employment contract.

TEFL in Spain – NIE Service

Please know that you do not need to be a TEFL trainee to apply for the NIE service. It is open to all who wish to start their life in Malaga. If you are finding it all too much then book our full NIE service. To apply for TEFL in Spain’s NIE service, please complete the form below. You will then be contacted to set up an appointment.  The service costs €50.

Still not Trinity CertTESOL qualified? Become the accredited teacher you want to be and teach English in sunny Spain with one of our TEFL courses. Check our course dates here.

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