The evolution of how to get a NIE in Spain should be studied because it is starting to be ridiculous.
It was long time ago when the process of getting a NIE was simpler and you could get it in one day after paying the tax. The time wasted was around a couple of hours, but at least, you could have your NIE on the same day, and once you got it, there was nothing else to do because this NIE number was valid “forever”.
Nowadays, all the process is getting more and more complicated. Now the NIE expires after three months, but why does it expire? Furthermore, in order to be able to pay taxes and make use of it, it has to be registered with Hacienda (Spanish tax office), but why is it not automatic? And, as if that wasn’t enough, now you need to get an appointment in order to get it and there is a “waiting list” for at least one week in most of the touristic towns of the South-East of Spain. Luckily, now we are able again to get the NIE if we give a power of attorney to somebody. The authorities decided time ago that the NIE couldn’t be obtained with a power of attorney so the only options left were going in person to get it or getting it through the Spanish Embassies or Consulates.
The situation is ridiculous, absurd and unnecessary. We get that the Spanish Bureaucracy needs to identify every person staying in Spain, but the way of doing it is pathetic, slow, inept and especially tedious. Getting a NIE should be easy and automatic, and we should be able to get it at the NOTARY OFFICE (when going there for buying a property, accepting an inheritance, etc.) We could take advantage of the fact that a Notary can attest and certify the identity of the person to be assigned with a NIE number. It will only be necessary a computer program that would scan the passport, register the personal information and directly assign a NIE number. We should also be able to pay the tax directly at the Notary office and that’s it, so easy… Then, the same computer program should be connected with Hacienda (Spanish tax office) to share the information and problem solved. But, we are in Spain and something quick, easy and simple will be unthinkable.
We should bear in mind that the NIE is a mandatory identification number that every foreigner in Spain needs for many reasons, but is a number that doesn’t give any rights or benefits. However, the authorities don’t try anything to make the process logical and quick.
We make a call to the Spanish authorities to seriously think about the possibility of making the process easier and not what they have been doing recently, which is the contrary.