There is a great deal of unease among British nationals living with their families in Spain as citizens of the European Union.  If the United Kingdom leaves without reaching a deal, there will be no transition period and EU law will cease to be applied to and by the UK, which means a large number of British nationals will become nationals of a third party country with no document authorising them to legally reside in Spain, thereby causing an irregular situation.

The Spanish government has tried to anticipate this by passing a Resolution approved on 25th March 2019 by the Secretary of State for Migration, and has issued instructions should the UK leave the Union without a deal, whereby UK citizens would cease to be covered by EU Citizen Status and henceforth be awarded Foreign Legal Status.

UK nationals and their families will have a maximum of twenty-one months from the date of a no-deal Brexit to apply to the Foreign Residents Office to legalize their status and obtain new documentation certifying that they are foreign residents in Spain;  their status as UK citizens will still be legal until their application is completed, when their current documents will be replaced by new ones proving their legal status in Spain.