Registering on the ‘padrón’ helps the local town hall to apply for funds from central government to bolster their municipal budgets. For this reason, many town halls are keen to get more inhabitants to register on their ‘padrón’, and often campaign to persuade more people to do so. In touristic and popular holiday home areas such as Costa del Sol, these campaigns are often targeted at the high numbers of foreigners who have homes in the locality. This includes both residents and non-resident holiday home owners.
Aside from the potential benefits to the area where you live the `Certificado de Empadronamiento´ is useful for a number of other purposes. These include proof of address, entitlement to local and reduced price services, and eligibility for subsidised rates of locally collected taxes – IBI,
Registering on the ‘padrón’. Do you need to?
By law you only need to register if you are a full-time resident in Spain. However, because the certificate is the most widely accepted official proof of address, many non-resident property owners register on the ‘padrón’, simply because it makes it easier to get a lot of things done.
The actual certificate is only valid for 3 months. What many people registering on the ‘padrón’ are not aware of, is that the date on first registration is permanent, and until recently, you remained on the list indefinitely. Now, you have to re-register every 2 or 5 years depending on your situation and nationality.
This can cause issues for part time residents, if or when they take up full time residency. Town Hall’s will maintain that there are are no tax implications, for being registered, however tax authorities can and do associate being on the ‘padrón’ with residency. For example a holiday home owner who has just become a permanent resident in Spain, may find themselves being denied a exemption from registration taxes when registering their own personal vehicle in Spain, simply because the ‘padrón’ entry shows the date they first registered and that date pre-dates their declared date of becoming a Spanish resident.
Are there and tax implications for registering on the ‘padrón’,
There are no direct tax implications of being on the ‘padrón’, however, the tax authority in Spain, might include a ‘padrón’ entry along with other evidence in trying to prove fiscal residency, in case of tax evasion.
The above may be the case, but it doesn’t mean that by registering on the ‘padrón’, whether resident or not you will create tax issues. Rather if the idea of registering on the ‘padrón’ does raise questions or concerns relating to tax, it is only be flagging a issue that already exists – i.e. that you may not be correctly set up for tax purposes, or may not fully understand your tax position. If this is the case, you would probably do well to seek advice from a suitably qualified professional, regarding your situation.
If you aren’t sure about your position, or have questions about Tax in Spain, feel free to get in touch and speak to one of our Financial & Tax Consultants. We don’t charge for an initial consultation, and they’ll answer most if not all of your general questions.
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