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Hello everyone

I want to ask about obtaining a Residency Card for EU Citizen Family Members, or in Spanish a Tarjeta de residencia de familiar de ciudadano de la Unión.

Having asked numerous sources I have come across a lot of confusing information, and I would be so appreciative if you would take the time to help answer the questions that I have.

Firstly, to offer some insight into our situation, I am a British national and my wife is a citizen of the United States of America, we both currently live in Japan, which is where we got married. We wish to move to Madrid in September this year, where I am currently looking for work. I have researched the process of her obtaining the residency card (visa?) required for her to be able to reside in Spain with me for the period of one year.

As a British national, it is my understanding that I can simply travel to Spain, (and once I have found employment and accommodation) apply for and obtain a Spanish Police Residence Certificate (green document/card which bears your NIE number and your address) and Certificado de Empadronamiento.

With these documents and others, and once my wife has arrived in Spain, we can obtain a Certificate of Foreign Marriage Recognition from the British Embassy. This, along with:
•Her Passport
•My Passport
•My Spanish Police Residence Certificate
•2x Completed EX-19 Form
•Stamped Modelo 790 Form for around €10,50
•Medical Insurance for the year (Seguro Medico Completo)
•Proof of my Employment
•Photocopies of everything
•Three passport-sized photographs in color
...allows us to apply for the Residency Card for EU Citizen Family Members at a local Oficina de Extranjeria, or Tarjeta de residencia de familiar de ciudadano de la Unión.

However, I wish to check a couple of things about this:

1. My wife has booked a flight to Spain arriving September 23rd, and currently has no return flight booked. Is she able to enter Spain essentially visa-less (as part of the Schengen Zone 90-day rule) or does she need some kind of visa to actually enter Spain? Which leads me to my next question...
2. Does my wife need some kind of pre-visa, as in some kind of Family Re-grouping Residence Visa, to actually enter Spain and seek the follow-up Residency Card for EU Citizen Family Members? She is from Georgia, and I read on the Consulate of Spain in Miami's website about such a visa, and am now worrying that particular visa is also necessary for her to even be allowed to apply for the EU Citizen Family Member card in Spain as planned.
3. Due to the fact that my wife will be applying for the Residency Card for EU Citizen Family Members during October time, and that I have read it can takes months for the actual card itself to arrive, will that be a problem? As in, will she receive some kind of documentation to prove that she has applied for residency and is not no longer subject to the Schengen Zone 90-day rule as a tourist? I have read you receive a copy of your EX-19 officially stamped, is this true?

My main concern is number 2.
It seems as though my wife needs to apply for and receive a Family Re-grouping Residence Visa to actually enter Spain on if she wants to apply for the Residency Card for EU Citizen Family Members in Spain which would grant her the freedom to stay for longer than 90 days. Is this true?

Thank you very much everyone. Any information/advice would be greatly appreciated.
 

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You would probably do better to have her arrive in UK as a tourist then regularise her position as your family member there, then move to Spain. That is what we did with my mother-in-law (also a US citizen).
 

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When you say "Residency card for EU Citizen Family Members" make sure it's what you want and not a residency card for a family member who is also a EU citizen - which isn't what you want.

In the UK there is a EEA(FM) form - to get a residency card for a family member who is a EU citizen. Target lead time for this is 6 months. I'm not sure what you would need in the UK but the mods on the British forum are very knowledgeable about the process in the UK if you try and go that route.
You should also investigate the Surinder Singh route which may be appropriate for you in Spain.
https://www.gov.uk/family-permit/surinder-singh
 

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Hello everyone

I want to ask about obtaining a Residency Card for EU Citizen Family Members, or in Spanish a Tarjeta de residencia de familiar de ciudadano de la Unión.

Having asked numerous sources I have come across a lot of confusing information, and I would be so appreciative if you would take the time to help answer the questions that I have.

Firstly, to offer some insight into our situation, I am a British national and my wife is a citizen of the United States of America, we both currently live in Japan, which is where we got married. We wish to move to Madrid in September this year, where I am currently looking for work. I have researched the process of her obtaining the residency card (visa?) required for her to be able to reside in Spain with me for the period of one year.

As a British national, it is my understanding that I can simply travel to Spain, (and once I have found employment and accommodation) apply for and obtain a Spanish Police Residence Certificate (green document/card which bears your NIE number and your address) and Certificado de Empadronamiento.

With these documents and others, and once my wife has arrived in Spain, we can obtain a Certificate of Foreign Marriage Recognition from the British Embassy. This, along with:
•Her Passport
•My Passport
•My Spanish Police Residence Certificate
•2x Completed EX-19 Form
•Stamped Modelo 790 Form for around €10,50
•Medical Insurance for the year (Seguro Medico Completo)
•Proof of my Employment
•Photocopies of everything
•Three passport-sized photographs in color
...allows us to apply for the Residency Card for EU Citizen Family Members at a local Oficina de Extranjeria, or Tarjeta de residencia de familiar de ciudadano de la Unión.

However, I wish to check a couple of things about this:

1. My wife has booked a flight to Spain arriving September 23rd, and currently has no return flight booked. Is she able to enter Spain essentially visa-less (as part of the Schengen Zone 90-day rule) or does she need some kind of visa to actually enter Spain? Which leads me to my next question...
2. Does my wife need some kind of pre-visa, as in some kind of Family Re-grouping Residence Visa, to actually enter Spain and seek the follow-up Residency Card for EU Citizen Family Members? She is from Georgia, and I read on the Consulate of Spain in Miami's website about such a visa, and am now worrying that particular visa is also necessary for her to even be allowed to apply for the EU Citizen Family Member card in Spain as planned.
3. Due to the fact that my wife will be applying for the Residency Card for EU Citizen Family Members during October time, and that I have read it can takes months for the actual card itself to arrive, will that be a problem? As in, will she receive some kind of documentation to prove that she has applied for residency and is not no longer subject to the Schengen Zone 90-day rule as a tourist? I have read you receive a copy of your EX-19 officially stamped, is this true?

My main concern is number 2.
It seems as though my wife needs to apply for and receive a Family Re-grouping Residence Visa to actually enter Spain on if she wants to apply for the Residency Card for EU Citizen Family Members in Spain which would grant her the freedom to stay for longer than 90 days. Is this true?

Thank you very much everyone. Any information/advice would be greatly appreciated.

:welcome:
Basically, you can travel here together, you register as resident and then your wife applies for residency as the ' spouse of an EU citizen exercising treaty rights'
Once the application process has started she can stay until it us complete

The difficult bit might be for you to find employment which pays enough to satisfy the financial requirements

There's no point doing anything in the UK. Any residency granted there would have no bearing in Spain - and is actually a more costly and complicated procedure
 

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We were in a similar situation, the main difference being that Japan (where you were married) is a member of the Hague convention whereas Indonesia (where we were married) is not. That means requirements to validate your marriage certificate are a little easier.

We moved here from HK and dealt with the Spanish Embassy there. Their advice was to obtain a Visa Familiar for my wife before we left for Spain, and everything after that seems to have worked out fine, so I'm guessing thats what the Spanish Embassy in Japan should also be advising (?).

The paperwork needed for the Visa Familiar is pretty-much the same as that needed for your wife's residence visa when she arrives here (minus the health insurance and income requirements), so you don't have to do everything twice.

But two issues to be aware of:

(1) When you get your marriage certificate apostilled, the validity of this is only three months (before you need to do it again). So in our case we found it quite tight to use the same legalised marriage certificate for both the Visa Familiar while in HK, and then use the same document for the residence process here in Spain (so be aware of the timing - if you apply for the Visa Familiar too early in Japan, you may need to get the marriage certificate re-appostiled later).

(2) Different embassies ask for different things, and many of them are quite incorrect to do so ! The most common difficulty seems to be that the Embassy asks for validation of your marriage certificate from the UK. The UK Embassy will correctly tell you that they simply do not do this, and the Spanish Embassy should know by now that its something that cannot be obtained. We had this issue and had to go up a couple of levels in the Spanish Embassy to confirm that UK certification is not needed (nor even a possibility to obtain), but others seem to have significant problems with this "home certification requirement ", so be prepared if it comes up.

So just the Visa Familiar to be got from the Spanish Embassy in Japan I think, and based on our experience seems the recommended way to do it.
 
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