Social Security Registration

If you are working in Spain, your employer will usually complete the necessary formalities that you are covered by social security. If he does not do it, you must obtain an attestation that you are employed in Spain and register at the nearest social security office to your home. Your local town hall will give you the address of your local office or it is listed under Seguridad Social in your local yellow pages.

If you are in receipt of a state pension in another EU country and move to Spain, you must take both copies of form E-121, to the pension department at your local social security office in Spain. One copy is retained and the other stamped and returned to you. You must produce passports and certified birth certificates for all dependants and a marriage certificate if applicable. You may also need to provide copies with official translations, but needs to be check first. You also need proof of residence such as a property deed or a rental contract.

After you have registered you received a registration card (tarjeta sanitaria), similar to a credit card, usually by post around four to eight weeks later. A married couple with one partner working are covered by the same number, as are all dependants (children under 16), but each dependant receives a separate social security card.

When applying for benefits or for social security reimbursements, you must apply to the office listed on your social security card and quote your social security number or produce your card. Note that there is a compulsory waiting period before a new subscriber can claim certain social security benefits, which varies depending on the particular benefit.

If you contribute to social security, your dependants will receive the same benefits. Dependants include your spouse (if he or she is not personally insured); your children supported by you under the age of 16 (or under the age of 20 if they are students or unable to work through illness or invalidity) and ascendants, descendants and relatives by marriage supported by you and living in the same household. Separated, divorced, and widowed people continue to receive benefits for at least one year after the “event”, or in the case of separated people, for as long as their spouse is employed providing they are not eligible for benefits from other sources.