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Hi,
Does anyone know the legal side of having a UK registered car here in Spain. I live here and have a Spanish registered car here but I'm thinking of bringing over a UK car as I return to the UK about six times a year. This car would be taxed, MOT'd and insured in the UK.
Thanks.
 

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Hi,
Does anyone know the legal side of having a UK registered car here in Spain. I live here and have a Spanish registered car here but I'm thinking of bringing over a UK car as I return to the UK about six times a year. This car would be taxed, MOT'd and insured in the UK.
Thanks.
you would need to re-matriculate the car into spanish plates/ITV it etc.....

if you have a look at the 'useful links' sticky thread above there are links to official sources & many discussion threads on this forum, on this very subject


if you want it for driving in the UK couldn't you garage it there somewhere?
 

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I think nobody knows the exact rules, the rules for Spain contradict the rules for the UK, the Guardia make the rules up to suit them. We are supposed to be a European community but nothing flows between one country and the next. You cant have a car registered in two countries at once. I read an article recently from the UK saying that unless your car was out of the UK for more than a year and was totally legal that you didn't need to register it elsewhere, but the Spanish are now saying if a car is in Spain for more than 30 days it has to be registered Spanish. I don't know if they are just trying to get all the illegal, no tax and MOT cars, or cars that are totally legal as well. It is a very grey area.
 

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I think nobody knows the exact rules, the rules for Spain contradict the rules for the UK, the Guardia make the rules up to suit them. We are supposed to be a European community but nothing flows between one country and the next. You cant have a car registered in two countries at once. I read an article recently from the UK saying that unless your car was out of the UK for more than a year and was totally legal that you didn't need to register it elsewhere, but the Spanish are now saying if a car is in Spain for more than 30 days it has to be registered Spanish. I don't know if they are just trying to get all the illegal, no tax and MOT cars, or cars that are totally legal as well. It is a very grey area.
there are exact rules

if you are resident in Spain you can't legally own & drive a UK registered car in Spain

the timeframe between bringing the car over & re-matriculating does change now & then, but the fact remains that it does have to be done at some stage

you can't just keep taking it back to the UK for an MOT etc., even if you're going there anyway
 

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Yes, what is said is as good as right. If you weren't a Spanish resident it is theoretically possible for you to leave a UK reg car in Spain if it was keep off the road for 6 months a year. But them you have to prove that.

There are German Motorhomes that appear around here every summer, indeed there are German Motorhomes I see here all the year round. The difference is that they tour all over Spain I guess, whereas with a car it would be seen by the guardia a lot. I dont know how they get around the "MOT" situation

Once you are a resident then you have to get it matriculated or risk it being "caught"
 

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Worth adding also that if you marticulate a UK reg car, you have to have owned the car 6 months prior AND do it within 6 months (6 i think) of your first time on the pardon in Spain (or when your residencia was issued) otherwise you will have to pay import tax and possibly IVA on the value of the car making it very expensive (if the car is worth anything of course).

You also need a "baja consular" (an affidavit) sworn at the consulate to declare the date you moved to spain if you want to get out of the taxes.

The government are wanting to stop people who buy cars in the UK at a lower value and bring them here. Even if you have all the papers to prove the above (and getting the Baja costs money), the whole process is expensive.. from headlight changes, to import ITV, a Gestor to do the legwork for you if you are not confident yourself, etc etc… the list goes on… I spent nearly 1000 euros to do mine 3 years ago… and when I decided to sell it recently i got thousands less than its UK value becaue RHD cars in spain are pretty worthless (i would have taken it back to the Uk to sell if i had more time).
 

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Yes, what is said is as good as right. If you weren't a Spanish resident it is theoretically possible for you to leave a UK reg car in Spain if it was keep off the road for 6 months a year. But them you have to prove that.

There are German Motorhomes that appear around here every summer, indeed there are German Motorhomes I see here all the year round. The difference is that they tour all over Spain I guess, whereas with a car it would be seen by the guardia a lot. I dont know how they get around the "MOT" situation

Once you are a resident then you have to get it matriculated or risk it being "caught"

Until about a year ago there were quite a few cars with UK plates on the roads around here, many of them LHD, a clear giveaway. I've been told of people who have been driving for years in UK registered vehicles.

But I've noticed just lately that there are far fewer on the roads. There are still a handful of 'regulars' I see almost every day I go into Estepona , mainly posh expensive vehicles...big new Mercs, Porsche, even the odd Bentley or two.

Whether this means that the owners of RHD cars have sold up and bought Spanish, gone back to the UK or what, I don't know. But it is an interesting change.

We've certainly seen an increase in the number of police road blocks, both Trafico and Nacional.
 

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I spent nearly 1000 euros to do mine 3 years ago… and when I decided to sell it recently i got thousands less than its UK value becaue RHD cars in spain are pretty worthless (i would have taken it back to the Uk to sell if i had more time).
This is a very important bit most people seem to forget. As soon as you move your newish RHD car onto spanish plates the resale value goes down dramatically.
 

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This is a very important bit most people seem to forget. As soon as you move your newish RHD car onto spanish plates the resale value goes down dramatically.
If they ( trafico ) didn`t make it so expensive to change a u.k. reg car onto spanish plates then I would think a lot of people would do the correct thing and do it, I have been told that my car a Renault Koleos 4x4 which is just 3 years old will cost me 2,300 euros to change over as the value that Madrid put on it is 23,000 euros , its crazy money, I want to be legal with my car but may have to go back to the u.k. with it to sell.
 

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If they ( trafico ) didn`t make it so expensive to change a u.k. reg car onto spanish plates then I would think a lot of people would do the correct thing and do it, I have been told that my car a Renault Koleos 4x4 which is just 3 years old will cost me 2,300 euros to change over as the value that Madrid put on it is 23,000 euros , its crazy money, I want to be legal with my car but may have to go back to the u.k. with it to sell.
I sold my year-old Merc because of the expense involved in putting it on Spanish plates.
The Spanish valuation would have been way above what I paid when I bought it from Mercedes in Germany.
 

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If they ( trafico ) didn`t make it so expensive to change a u.k. reg car onto spanish plates then I would think a lot of people would do the correct thing and do it, I have been told that my car a Renault Koleos 4x4 which is just 3 years old will cost me 2,300 euros to change over as the value that Madrid put on it is 23,000 euros , its crazy money, I want to be legal with my car but may have to go back to the u.k. with it to sell.
Just to make it clear to us, the matriculation would take place within 30 days of you taking up residence in Spain? If that's the case then afaik you dont have to pay the import registration fees as long as you have owned the car personally for the prior 6 months.
 
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