News on Spanish Nationality 2019


The Foreign Affairs and Immigration Congress was held on October 4 and 5, 2019 in Madrid. It is a very important event to obtain the latest information on the situation of the files of Spanish nationality.

We summarise here the updated news that María del Mar López Álvarez, Assistant Director of Nationality and Civil Status of the General Department for Registries and Notaries (DGRN), brought us.

These are the most relevant headlines:

Many resolutions in 2019 

As she said in her speech, the files are assigned in sets to the civil servants. Therefore, if a civil servant works fast and has a set of 2019 it will be resolved faster than others.

The Spanish nationality files of the old procedure 

These files are being resolved together with those of the new procedure. Most of the 2018 files are being digitised. After the signing of the new assignment with the Property Registrars, the files digitalised in 2016 are now being resolved.

The Spanish nationality files of the new procedure  

These files have to be carefully examined to verify that all the necessary documents are provided. In this Congress we have been informed of the number of civil servants responsible for resolving the files of Spanish nationality: a total of 170.

The statistic of presented and resolved files 

For the first time, the number of files resolved is higher than the number of those submitted.

More than 47,000 files of the new procedure have been resolved. By the end of September, only 4% needed to be revised, 43% were still in progress, 28% still had requirements and 25% had been resolved.

In some cases an incorrect requirement has been made due to a failure of the Ministry, which has delayed the process. Another of the most frequent causes is the lack of a Court Order for the notification of the file resolution.

Recommendations regarding documentation  

– It is not necessary to request the Exemption for all those who have the title of the ESO (Compulsory Secondary Education).

– It is not necessary to provide the marriage certificate if the marriage is not registered in a Spanish Civil Registry.

– Minors who arrive in Spain do not need to provide their criminal record from their country of origin: it is sufficient to prove that they have not left Spain and they can request nationality upon the age of 18.

– Foreigners who can prove their long-term residence must provide the documentation proving their continued residence in order to avoid other requirements.

– Request the Exemption in advance, before submitting the file. The requested exemptions are already digitised.

– Those who cannot read or write can request a certification from the municipal literacy centre of the autonomous community.

In case of requirement, the civil servant who reviews the requirements will receive a notice and, if everything is correct, it will be resolved.

To those who made the request through Bar Associations or Consultancy, we reccomend that they submit the application on the general electronic platform if they cannot provide new documentation.

Delay of the Spanish nationality oath 

In general, there is a waiting period of 180 days from the notification of acquisition of Spanish nationality until the oath. In the event that the Civil Registry takes too long to fix an appointment, the Ministry will communicate an instruction to these records to cancel the deadline.

Currently, taking the oath before a notary is not possible.