The Empadronamiento, also known as the Padrón Municipal de Habitantes, is a municipal register or census record, similar to an electoral roll. To register on the Padrón is to “empadronarse“. Registering on the empadronamiento places a resident of a town on the list of local inhabitants.
UK nationals who plan on living in Spain for more than 3 months must register as a resident and on the padrón at their town hall. Residents may register individually or as a family. To be registered is to be “empadronado“.
How to get your Padron
Register on the padrón
If you live in Spain you must register on the padrón municipal, which is a list of all the people who live in a certain town.
You must register at the address where you normally live. You cannot be registered on the padrón (“empadronado”) at more than one address.
You do not need to own a property to register, you can still register if you are renting or live with others.
Registering on the ‘padrón municipal’ where you live is not the same as registering as a resident in Spain, which is a separate national register called the ‘Registro Central de Extranjeros’.
How to register for your Padron
Padrón registries are managed by municipal authorities and town halls across Spain. The registration process may vary between regions. You may have to:
- request an appointment online (“cita previa”) to register in person
- submit your application online
You register on the padrón at your local town hall by filling in the form they provide (“solicitud de alta”). This form may be available to download on your local authority’s website.
How to get your Padron
Documents for the padrón
When applying in person or online, you will need to present official identification and documentation which shows you live at the stated address such as:
- a passport
- your NIE or residence certificate / card
- the deeds to your house or a copy of your rental contract
- a recent utility bill in your name or ‘Impuesto de Bienes Inmuebles (I.B.I)’
Your town hall will issue you a certificado de empadronamiento. You may have to return to collect your certificate, but the authorities will complete your registration on the same day.
Some town halls may charge a small fee (for example 1.20 euros in Palma de Mallorca).
Benefits of padrón registration
By registering you can:
- access public services and discounts
- access income-related benefits and social care
- receive a reduction in taxes
- get discounted travel for residents on Spanish islands
- vote in local elections
- register for local healthcare
- enrol children in school
- register a car with a Spanish number plate
Keeping your padrón up to date and de-registering
If you move house within the same municipality, you should request an appointment with your local town hall and update your details by requesting ‘cambio de domicilio’.
If you move to a different municipality, you can register (“alta”) at your new address without needing to de-register from your old addressing (“baja”) as it will be processed automatically by your new local authority.
If you decide to leave Spain, you should de-register by requesting ‘Baja por residencia’. Please refer to your local town for further information regarding de-registering procedures.
How to get your Padron
How to request a duplicate copy
Once registered, you may find that you need to present a duplicate copy of your padrón certificate issued within the last 3 months when carrying out administrative processes in Spain (e.g. civil registries, social services, local education authorities etc.). We are aware that this is a requirement in some Extranjería offices in Spain when applying for residency.
There are many ways to request a duplicate padrón certificate:
- in person at your local town hall
- by completing an online form requesting the certificate be sent by post to your registered address
- instant online access if you have some form of official digital ID such as a ‘certificado digital’ or by using the ‘Cl@ve’ app.
You should check with your local authority for information on the options available to you.
Padrón status checks
You must confirm your padrón status every 2 or 5 years in order to remain registered.
If you have a certificate of residence your town hall will contact you every 5 years from the date you register to confirm that you still live in the town and wish to remain on the padrón.
If you don’t have a certificate of residence your town hall will contact you every 2 years. Your town hall will remove you from the padrón register if they are unable to confirm you still live in the town.
You can check with your town hall that you remain on the padrón register at any time.
Births, deaths and change of address
A change in status (birth, marriage, move to a new location) must be reported to the Padrón Municipal.
- When moving house within the same community details must be updated by notifying the Padrón Municipal
- When moving to a different municipality, repeat the registration process in the new community. Once registered, the current community should notify the previous community of the change
- When moving away from Spain, the town hall or Junta Municipal should be notified so the Padrón can be updated.