IT was a particular delight to have our British consul Charmaine Arbouin back on Marbella Now this week, as there were actually specifics to talk about!
Even though the deal is done it’s far from over, fortunately for many who have yet to get their documentation in order. Just yesterday a friend said she had only that day actually taken her mother’s residency out to physically look at it. Lo and behold, it wasn’t a permanent document and so immediate panic set in with the realisation that it’s all too easy to be caught out by complacency.
The good news is that we, and the powers that be, still have until the end of this year to work it all out. However as we thought last year was that year and people are still getting around to it, please, this time, try not to leave it until the last minute.
Charmaine couldn’t stress enough that we need to check our paperwork and if in doubt, ask. When asking, do so to the relevant authorities and consult the official websites. The www.gov.uk page and www.moncloa.es sites both have a Brexit link with very comprehensive instructions; the Spanish page being particularly thoughtful with voice recordings on all main topics.
Even more considerate is a new helpline launched by the Spanish Government Brexit 060. When I first read the information shared on social media I was waiting for the punch line, but when I got to the end there wasn’t one.
So I called the number and got through to the service, which as of February 1, 2020 offers information on all the main topics, in English. These include exchanging driving licences, pensions and healthcare but also travel, business and universities.
This service is coordinating with the Spanish Embassy and its consulate in London so that any changes that happen will be quickly updated to this phone service.
There is no charge calling 060 from a landline, but there will be if you call from your mobile, each provider setting their own rates.
To finish my Brexit binge I highly recommend you watch Chamaine’s interview on Marbella Now (#MN249 11.02.2020 available from our website) and not just because she sums up everything so eloquently and knows what she’s talking about, but also because she has a way of knowing how to put things into perspective, even for our ‘swallows’ who seem to be the most confused as to how to keep living on the coast and in the manner to which we’ve all become so accustomed.