Car registration confusion

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Q.

I was stopped by the Local Police in my UK plated car. I said I had been driving for two months in Spain, which was true, and showed them all my correct documents.
They told me that I was only allowed one month before I needed to complete the registration process to import the car as a Spanish vehicle. I was sent to the Customs Office in Malaga and told I had to declare my intention to import my car and pay taxes or return it to the UK.
I decided to return the car to the UK. However, according to your article I am allowed 12 months on UK plates in Spain.
Which is correct or have I missed something?

N S (Costa del Sol)

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A.

It does appear that you have have missed something.
Although you do not mention it, you appear to be an official resident of Spain.
In this case, the police are quite correct. A resident must operate a car with Spanish registration.
Properly, you should have applied to import your vehicle at the time your residence certificate was issued.
You can do this free of Spanish tax if you do it within a month of obtaining the residence certificate.
The other information I gave related only to non-residents, and the 12-month figure would only apply to the last six months of one calendar year and the first six months of the next.
I trust this clarifies the matter for you.


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