Paperwork….and police

They sure love their paperwork here in Spain. From obtaining residencia, library cards to traffico.

There is pretty much not an aspect of the Spanish lifestyle that is touched by the paper trail!

My keys to success 
1. It’s all about keeping calm,using the little Spanish you have

2. Making squillions of photocopies of every piece of paper you’ve ever obtained.

3. And a big smile.
This morning I had to renew my husbands NIE. The paper that the NIE is printed on is valid for three months. The numbers,information including the identification number do not change. Almost all institutions that require a copy are happy to take the paper originally given to you,even if it’s past the three month mark. Except of course the body of government that you are trying to sort anything out with at the time. For us this time was traffico.

No big deal,you just have to wait in line outside the police station. It’s guarded by a police man with a pump action shotgun. Until he says,you must wait go in. 
Do not expect his door policy to follow any pattern. There are lawyers rushing a client,a lady with a baby. They may take precedence over you,or not,who knows.

Then you move into a loosely based line up system.
There are no forms on display. I’m not sure where you’d get them if you weren’t as ballsy/stupid as myself to barge up to the policewoman at her desk. I am sure she did understand what I needed and chose not to. Then ask in poco Espanol for the duplicato forms and fill them in.

Mr E then has to run to the Banco,pay the 7 euros for the paperwork fee and then wait for the loosely based line up system to give our paperwork to the paperwork goddesses, if only they looked like goddesses!

If you live here,I’d suggest you set aside whole mornings,most government bodies skip working in the afternoons.

You can’t pay at anything at the desk within the police station. I’m not really sure why,maybe they don’t trust the government officials. 

Spain has so many wonderful contradictions. We have Full rights to same sex couples and Prius taxis then a completely archaic paper and registration system.

I think I’ll be needing one beautiful extra large filing cabinets to store all the copies and paperwork! 

Love and loquats.

Lea. X


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