It is advisable for foreign persons and entities to obtain a NIF

23 April, 2019

The internationalization of commercial and corporate operations is submitted to a constant evolving process, which brings to the compliance of certain requirements, either more complicated or simplified, depending on the operation that is intended to be carried out.

In this regard, and with regard to the Spanish legislative system, all natural or legal persons not residing in Spain who are going to carry out economic operations, are required to get a Spanish identification number, previously.


In the case of individuals, that number will be the NIE (Foreigner Identification Number), and in case of companies, it will be a NIF (Tax Identification Number).

It is an alpha-numerical identification, required to perform any transaction being relevant to the Tax Administration, and for subsequent economic transactions, for which such identification will be required.

Consequently, any non-resident natural or legal person who wants to establish or carry out some type of business in Spain, shall request such identification.

Although this is a fairly settled legal requirement, it really depends on whether or not operations will be carried out nowadays, so there are people and even companies that, having interests in Spain, that do not have such identification.

It is usual that foreign shareholders of Spanish companies do not have this NIE or NIF, because it was not required at the time of the investment; but it should not be forgotten that, in case of having to undertake a capital increase or, for instance, fulfill  records of transactions between parent and subsidiary companies, this number would necessarily be required.

Therefore, taking into account the changes in that matter, and to avoid surprises when performing some future undertakings, it is advisable for partners foreigners, and in general for any foreign non-resident who intends to carry out any economic operation in Spain, obtaining this NIE or NIF, in case of not having it.

We will avoid unnecessary delays, anticipating the situation, being able to proceed by any operation immediately.

For any questions about this article, you can use the contact area of ​​our website to contact our team of specialist lawyers. We will be glad to answer your question.

Melanie Díaz – Lawyer

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