The NIE or “Numero de Identidad deExtranjero” is an ID number for foreigners residing legally in Spain for periods longer than those covered by visas. It is also required of non-resident foreigners who engage in certain economic activities in Spain, including, amongst others, inheriting property, opening and operating bank accounts in Spain, purchase real property, acquiring shares in a Spanish company, etc. By far the easiest way to obtain the NIE if you are not present in Spain, is to apply for one at the nearest Spanish Embassy or Consulate. Appointments can be made in advance and you can access the necessary forms online, for example at:–New-York.aspx

Applying for a NIE in Spain is a much more complicated procedure and, if you are not present in Spain, you must do so by granting a power of attorney to a representative to apply on your behalf.

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