What is ‘street legal’ in Spain? Do I need all the right paperwork?


Q. I have always understood that any foreign plated car on the road in Spain had to be ‘street legal’ in the country in which it is registered. For example, a British car more than four years old must have valid road tax sticker, MOT and UK insurance. Could you please confirm if I am right or are there any exceptions to the above statement, where a car can be on the Spanish roads without all the above?

J.Y. (Costa Blanca))

A. Yes, a UK-plated car needs all the above requirements that make it ‘street legal’ in the UK in order to operate legally on Spanish roads. The same goes for any other foreign-registered vehicle. If you are stopped by the Guardia Civil and your UK car has an out-of-date MOT, they will probably just give you a warning. Remember that you can legally drive your foreign-registered vehicle in Spain for six months a year as a tourist. After that, you must take it out of Spain or import it.

Send your questions for David Searl through lawyers Ubeda-Retana and Associates in Fuengirola at Ask@lawtaxspain.com, or call 952 667 090.

Author badge placeholder
Written by

David Searl

You and the law in spain Send your questions for David Searl through lawyers Ubeda-Retana and Associates in Fuengirola at Ask@lawtaxspain.com, or call 952 667 090.