Here at MYNIE we have had had countless amount of messages asking about the lockdown here in Spain. So we have spent hours looking at the BOE (Official State Bulletin), the Royal Decree, Home Office, La Moncloa, Pedro Sánchez’s twitter, Ministry of Health, Unemployment office, Tax office(AEAT) and the police.
There is little difference in the rules between those who have a NIE Number to those who do not.
The state of alarm decreed to contain the coronavirus pandemic forces people to stay at home and only leave their homes in the exceptions contemplated by the Government.
These are detailed in the BOE, and have been updated several times.
Under what circumstances can you go outside?
According to the Royal Decree, the movement of people is limited and it is only possible to go out in the streets and public spaces to carry out the following activities.
- Travel to the place of work to carry out their work, professional or business activities
- Acquisition of food, pharmaceutical products and basic necessities.
- Assistance to health centres, services and establishments.Return to the place of habitual residence.
- Assistance and care for the elderly, minors, dependants, persons with disability or particularly vulnerable persons.
- Travel to financial and insurance entities. Due to force majeure or a situation of need.
- Any other activity of a similar nature to be carried out individually, unless accompanied by persons with disabilities or for another justified reason.
Do I have to go to work?
On March 29th, a new regulation was published in the BOE that requires the cessation of all non-essential activity in order to further reduce travel. If you do need to go to work you will need a NIE Number.
In this way, essential work is considered:
– The activities involved in the market supply chain: food, drink, animal feed, hygiene products, medicines, health products or any product for the protection of health.
– Hotel and restaurant business home delivery.
– Production and distribution of goods, services, health technology, medical material, protection equipment, health and hospital equipment.
– The essential activities of the manufacturing industry that offer supplies and material for the development of the activities contained in this decree.
– Transport of persons and goods.
-Prison institutions, civil protection, sea rescue, fire protection, mine and traffic safety and road safety. Also private security.
-The indispensable ones to maintain the material of the armed forces.
-All the activities of health centres, the care of minors and the elderly, disabled and dependent people and those related to the activity against COVID-19. Also funeral services and related activities.
-Animal health care.
-Media and press sales.
-Banking, financial and insurance services
-Telecommunication, audiovisual and essential computer services companies
-Activities related to the protection and care of victims of gender-based violence
-Lawyers, solicitors, interpreters and psychologists who attend to non-suspended judicial activity.
-Activities related to the prevention of occupational risks in urgent actions.
-Notes and records to comply with the minimum established services.
-Cleaning, maintenance and repairs of urgent breakdowns, collection and management of hazardous and urban waste.
-Centres for the Reception of Refugees and Centres for the Temporary Stay of Immigrants and private management entities subsidised by the Secretary of State for Migration that operate in humanitarian action.
-Water supply. Gas and electricity.
-The essential ones for weather forecasting.
-Sectors and sub-sectors involved in the import and supply chain of medical equipment
-Distribution and delivery of products purchased over the Internet or telephone
-All those that would have been considered essential in the state of alert decree.
The rest of the workers who were not previously teleworking or in other circumstances such as sick leave, must take advantage of the recoverable paid leave included in the Royal Decree.
If I have to go to work, do I need a pass?
All workers who have to go to work because they are considered essential services must go to the workplace with the certificate issued by the government.
The BOE has published the model declaration of responsibility that must be submitted to the State security forces if requested.
This ‘laissez-passer’ contains the details of the company and the employee carrying the certificate. In this way the worker will be able to make the necessary trips to fulfil the work purpose and avoid a possible sanction for being on the street in case the security forces demand it.
What does the document look like? Who should issue it?
According to the additional provision of the BOE of Monday 30 March, it is “the company or employing entity” that must issue “a responsible statement” that acknowledges that the workers comply with the circumstances required to travel to the workplace. (The model for the document in images).
Can I get a NIE Number during the coronavirus Lockdown?
All police stations in Spain have currently suspended issuing NIE Numbers in Spain. Here at MY NIE we are still taking bookings and these bookings will be given priority once the police station is reopen. Click here to book a NIE Number appointment online.
Do you need a pass to go shopping?
No, you do not need a permit to go shopping or to the pharmacy, as these are considered essential activities and are permitted by the Royal Decree.
Should I keep the receipts from the purchase or the pharmacy in case I get stopped?
It is not obligatory and there is no automatic penalty if you do not carry them, although it is recommended. In the event that you are stopped by the security forces and they make the pertinent checks to see if you comply with the requirements to be on the street, it will be easier to prove that you are not committing an infraction if you carry the receipts, prescriptions, bank receipt, etc. that prove it.
Can I go shopping with someone else?
To go shopping and in any of the cases in which it is allowed to go out to the street you must go alone. You can only accompany disabled people, minors, senior citizens, or “for other justified reasons”. As we see, these “other justified causes” are not detailed, but it is understood that they must be causes of force majeure to be considered exceptional.
This was one of the modifications that were included from the drafting of the first decree, which at first did not contemplate that it was possible to go out accompanied by small children, which was a problem for those who had to leave them alone at home.
Can I have company in the car?
The decree establishes that private vehicles will be allowed to drive on public roads to carry out the permitted activities or to refuel at petrol stations or service stations.
As stated in the RD, these journeys must be “made individually, unless accompanied by disabled persons, minors, the elderly, or there is another duly justified reason”.
On 25 March, the Government clarified the decree and added the following text
“Public, private complementary and private transport of persons in vehicles of up to nine seats, including the driver, carried out within the framework of the cases of travel authorised in article 7 of Royal Decree 463/2020, of 14 March, in which more than one person must travel in the vehicle, shall respect the fact that there is a maximum of one person per row of seats, maintaining the greatest possible distance between the occupants”.
In other words, two people are allowed to travel in one car, the driver and one person in the opposite rear seat, and provided that the journey is made for one of the reasons set out in the decree of the alarm state. These journeys can also be made in rented vehicles.
As the concept of “duly justified cause” is left wide open in the wording of the decree, it is likely that the security forces will have to deal with situations not specified in the RD on a case-by-case basis.
How long should the walk with the dog last?
Walking the dog is one of the exceptions provided for in the state of alert decree. When they were detailed in a press conference, the director of the Coordination Center for Health Alerts and Emergencies of the Ministry of Health, Fernando Simon, clarified that “they have not been limited to a longer or shorter time, but the usual time.
Even so, from the General Directorate of Animal Rights, they dictate the following recommendations:
Take short walks, just to cover the physiological needs.
Avoid contact with other animals or people. Carry a bottle of water with detergent to clean the urine and bags for poo.
Give priority to walks at times when there are less people in the street.
Can I leave the house to go care for a family member or dependent or run errands for them?
This is one of the cases covered by the Royal Decree: “assistance and care for the elderly, minors, dependents, disabled persons or particularly vulnerable persons”.
It is important that you comply with safety recommendations to avoid infecting people at risk by minimizing contact.
Those who must change the custody of minors can also be moved to attend to them. This was confirmed by the Minister of Justice, Juan Carlos Campo, assuring that the custody and visiting regimes of separated parents “will have to continue to be complied with” during the state of alarm, assuring that “the return of the child to the habitual home is one of the exceptional causes” in the decree approved by the Government.
Can I go outside to accompany a person with a disability?
On March 20, the Ministry of Health signed an instruction that explicitly authorizes “people with disabilities who have behavioral disorders, such as people diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder and disruptive behavior, which is aggravated by the situation of confinement resulting from the declaration of the state of alarm, and an accompanying person, to circulate on public roads, provided that the necessary measures are respected to prevent contagion.
Do I need to provide documentation that I am accompanying a person with a disability?
The rule does not establish that documentation has to be carried. However, both the Confederación Autismo España and CERMI recommend that the following documents be carried
Official certificate of recognition of disability. In the case of having the disability recognized.
Prescription of a health or social professional, if available.
Copy of the Instruction of 19 March 2020, from the Ministry of Health, establishing interpretative criteria for the management of the health crisis situation caused by COVID-19.
Complementary medical, psychological or social reports describing individual needs and/or the existence of behavioural difficulties, if available.
Do people with disabilities have to identify themselves in any way?
No. Although there are several initiatives that encourage people to wear some kind of badge to avoid being shouted at from the balcony when these therapeutic walks are taking place, there is no obligation to ‘mark’ people with any kind of disability who need to go out. The Confederación Autismo España warns that this may be counterproductive.
Can I get a fine?
The Criminal Code and the Law on Citizen Security include the crimes and administrative infractions that may be incurred by citizens who do not respect the state of alarm, as it appears in the order by which the Minister of the Interior, Fernando Grande-Marlaska, regulates the actions of the Security Forces in the current scenario.
The crimes of “failure to comply with or resistance to orders of authority” are punished, in their most serious form, with up to four years in prison, while the application of the Law on Citizen Security implies a penalty for serious misconduct with fines of between 600 and 30,000 euros.
The same Law on Citizen Security establishes that “for serious infringements, the minimum degree will include the fine of 601 to 10,400 Euros, the average degree from 10,401 to 20,200 Euros, and the maximum degree from 20,201 to 30,000 Euros”.
SEPE (unemployment office)
The deadlines for the submission of applications are suspended and the rights are not reduced for late submissions.
Unemployment protection measures have been adopted for workers affected by suspensions of contract and reductions in working hours (ERTEs).
If you are already receiving unemployment benefits or subsidies
As regards registration as a job seeker: check the instructions of the public employment service of your Autonomous Community for the renewal or registration of the demand for employment. Follow the instructions on the website.
You do not have to apply for an extension of the allowance, the payment will be maintained after six months.
The payment of unemployment benefit will not be interrupted by failure to submit the Annual Income Tax Return for persons receiving the benefit for workers over 52 years of age.
Tomorrow, April 1st, begins the deadline for the presentation of income and assets declarations for 2019, an atypical campaign that starts in full confinement due to the coronavirus epidemic.
According to this calendar, taxpayers will be able to file their returns online through the Tax Agency’s web income program or mobile application from April 1st.
Those who wish to file their returns by phone through the program “Le llamamos” (We call you) may request it from May 5 so that the Agency can call you from May 7, as soon as possible, but without the possibility of choosing a time slot as in previous campaigns.
With regard to the face-to-face attention in offices -which are currently closed-, the Agency maintains the start on May 13, with previous appointment that can be requested from May 5. The campaign for income and assets will be extended until 30 June, except for the declarations to be paid by direct debit, which must be presented by 25 June at the latest.
People who have the old permanent residency certificates in A4 will not be able to book appointments online as it asks for the support number, and as these are old (although still valid), it doesnt accept those numbers. You either have to book the appointment over the phone or when they are open you can request a pin (cl@ve) at the desk. (Example of a4 certificate support code in images).
SOCIAL SHIELD AGAINST THE CORONAVIRUS
Social measures not to leave anyone behind.
All evictions without alternative housing are suspended, the contracts for 6 months and is supported by microcredits to people in vulnerable situations. Moreover, if they remain in this situation after the crisis, the State will take care of the debt. The large homeowners will have to perform a 50% discount or debt restructuring in 3 years.
Extension of the mortgage moratorium. Extension of the moratorium on payment of mortgages also to the premises and offices of the self-employed and the criteria for vulnerability.
Cutting off supplies of any kind in the usual dwelling is prohibited as long as the alarm state is in effect. In addition, the social bonus is extended so that the people who have become vulnerable are eligible for it, it applies a moratorium on the payment of supplies for the self-employed and SMEs and these may adapt their contracts to their new consumer realities, without penalty.
New labour measures
Allowance for domestic workers. A subsidy is created for temporary unemployment that they can apply for if they become unemployed or have their working hours reduced.
Extraordinary unemployment benefit for workers and temporary workers whose contract ended after the declaration of alarm that do not have the necessary contribution to access another benefit or subsidy.
Care services for victims of sexual exploitation and trafficking for sexual exploitation.
Safe alternative housing is guaranteed for victims of male violence, through hotel accommodation if host services are not available.
Compliance with precautionary measures and prohibition penalties is a guaranteed approach to gender-based violence.
Mechanisms are set up so that town councils and Autonomous Regions can allocate the execution of the State Pact funds for gender-based violence.
Restriction of online game advertising for the duration of the state alarm system.
Moratorium on Consumer Credit Payments for Vulnerable People economic for three months, which can be extended.
In the case of cancelled package tours, a voucher can be issued to be used in a year by the consumer. If it is not used, return of the paid amount.
Can I get residency in Spain during the Coronavirus lockdown?
No, all residency applications are currently on hold until the lockdown is over. Click here to apply for Residency in Spain