What documents must I have in my car in Spain?

What documents must I have in my car in Spain

There are several documents you must be able to provide to the authorities on request when driving a car in Spain. The title of the documents may depend on the country your vehicle is from but in general the paperwork will be the same for everyone.

You must be able to provide:

  • your original full driving licence.
  • Proof of identification (Passport, National Identity Card).
  • Proof of vehicle ownership. In Spain that would be the permiso de circulacion and the ficha tecnica. If the vehicle is from the UK, for example, you should have the original V5C certificate.
  • If you are driving a non-Spanish plated vehicle, then you should also have proof of insurance.

For Spanish registered vehicles the police have a computer system called FIVA (Fichero informativo de Vehiculos Asegurados) where they can check the vehicle is insured. There is no legal requirement to keep the original documents for your car insurance in Spain any longer, for a Spanish registered vehicle.

It would be sensible of course to keep the insurance accident and breakdown recovery numbers in the car as well as the DAA (Declaración Amistosa de Accidente) the Accident Statement.

How to change registered address of vehicle in Spain

Change registered address of vehicle Spain

If you have moved from one town or province to another then you will need to pay your road taxes in the new area.

This involves changing the address with the Regional Traffic Office (Jefatura Provincial de Trafico). You may also need to change your driving licence address details with the authorities too.

Even though it is possible to obtain a pre-booked appointment, in some cases the Regional Traffic Office is not very conveniently located.

Thankfully, many Town Halls are now affiliated with the Regional Traffic Office which means that you can undertake certain tasks at your local Town Hall.

Can I change these details at my Town Hall?

Not all Town Halls offer the service but you can check to see if your Town Hall is part of the scheme here. (Then look at the list of “Ayuntamientos con convenio”. They are divided into groups alphabetically).

You will need to pick up a “Solicitud de cambio de domicilio” form from your Town Hall. At the top of the form you complete it with the appropriate personal details.

How do I complete the “Solicitud de cambio de domiciliacion”?

change registered address of vehicle in Spain
You need a form like this to change the registered address for your vehicles and your driving licence

The first section is for you to provide your personal details and the new address.

Change registered address for vehicle in Spain

Underneath the first section are two tick boxes. The first relates to whether you want to update the address held for your driving licence and the second relates to whether you wish to change the address held for your vehicle(s).

change registered address of vehicle in Spain

Tick the appropriate box(es).

Underneath you can complete the details of all your vehicles that should be registered at the new address. The date of first registration can be found on the green vehicle document called a “Permiso de Circulacion”. Open it up and inside on the left hand side you will see a date next to the box labelled “I” This is the date of first registration.

You then need to date and sign the form as shown below.

change registered address of vehicle in Spain
Enter the place where you sign the document, the day, month and year then sign where it says Firma:

The completed form should then be returned to the Town Hall along with the following paperwork:

In the case of a change to the vehicle registered address

  • The original permiso de circulación
  • The original ficha técnica
  • The certificate of Empadronamiento (which you can obtain from the Town Hall of course)
  • Your original NIE document

You must also supply copies of all these documents.

In my case I had to provide copies of every page of the permiso de circulacion including the front page with the serial number of the document. I also had to supply all the pages of the ficha tecnica including those stapled to it.

In the case of a change to the registered address for your driving licence:

  • The original driving licence
  • Your original NIE document

Remember it is not just that you might not be paying the correct Town Hall your road taxes if you do not change your address, you might not receive notifications of any traffic infringements either.

Don’t forget to advise the new address to your car insurance company in Spain.

Change vehicle registered address by phone

Car Insurance Spain is pleased to advise its customers that it is now possible to change the registered address of your vehicle over the telephone with the Dirección General de Tráfico (DGT.es).

No longer is it necessary to book an appointment and take your paperwork to the Regional Traffic Office. You can make the change from the comfort of your own home.

The number to ring is 060.

However, before you ring make sure you:

  1. Are registered on the padron at the Town Hall at the new address.
  2. Make sure you have your DNI or NIE handy
  3. You will, of course, be able to recall your name, surname and date of birth as you will need to give this information
  4. The registration number of the vehicle
  5. You should have the Permiso de circulación to hand as well as they may ask for some details.

You may also be interested in knowing that you can change these details are many local Town Halls. See our article how to change registered address of vehicle in Spain at your Town Hall.

A reflective jacket and two warning triangles

If you break down in Spain, you should try to stop the vehicle out of the way of the traffic flow as much as possible. Put on your reflective jacket before stepping out of the car. That means your jacket needs to be reachable from the driver’s seat rather than rolled up into a ball and stuffed underneath the small tool kit and the oil can you have in the boot. The glove box is usually a good place to stow it.

You should organise setting out your red warning triangles. One should be placed fifty metres behind your broken down car. If the road is a two-way road rather than a motorway for example, then the second red warning triangle needs to be placed fifty metres in front of the vehicle.

This will warn vehicles coming from both directions that there is a problem ahead.

Ring your car insurance company in Spain for roadside assistance on your mobile phone. Tell them the road you are on and try and if on a motorway in which direction you are travelling. Most breakdown services offered by car insurance companies in Spain will arrive within the hour.

If you do not have a reflective jacket or warning triangles, then you could be fined by the police. This is more likely to happen on a motorway where the police are normally monitoring the traffic flow and can quickly identify a broken down vehicle. Their main intention will be to get you moved to safety and the traffic flowing freely again. However, failure to have the correct equipment in the car may lead them to add to your mechanical woes with a ticket for non-compliance with the road traffic laws.

Although not a legal requirement you might also want to consider buying a flashing warning light.

Nearly all policies include some form of accident and breakdown recovery as standard.

Intelligent system aid for driving

Intelligent system aid for driving

The General Directorate of Traffic (DGT) and the City of Barcelona have united to present new features in the implementation of the Autonomous Ready system of driving assistance.

The aim is to drastically reduce the accident rate in urban environments. The project has implemented cutting edge safety devices in vehicles. This takes into account the EU legislation that will come into force in 2022.

250 vehicles in the scheme

170 vehicles in fleets and 79 buses are already using artificial vision cameras that interpret the environment and emit sound and visual alerts in real time. The idea is to prevent collisions, detect the presence of pedestrians, cyclists and other obstacles, even in low light conditions.

The devices emit information that will allow the identification of points of risk in the city. In turn this will allow for the improvement of the road infrastructure. Additionally, the data collected can advance the research and development of the autonomous vehicle.

Human errors

The DGT, taking into account that 90% of traffic accidents are due to human errors, focuses initiatives such as Autonomous Ready within the “safe system” approach. This approach aims that human errors, sometimes inevitable, do not end in tragedy. It pursues a multidisciplinary model. This looks at roads, behaviour, speed and vehicles, so that the negative effects of these errors can be minimised.

The sytsem helps to prevent distractions from resulting in an accident or collision, providing an environment of “indirect security” to vulnerable users. This group make up more than 80% of the deaths that occur in the city due to traffic accidents.

Scheme expansion

During this year 2019 it is planned that 530 more systems will be installed in fleet vehicles and 105 in urban buses. This will be increased until it is implemented in 5,000 vehicles which circulate in the city of Barcelona. Any public or private fleet can participate in the Autonomous Ready project.

Source: DGT

Easter Traffic Operation

Easter Traffic Operation

With the start of Holy Week holidays for millions of citizens, the DGT started the first phase of the special Easter traffic operation.
 
The purpose was to order, regulate and give security to the 3.9 million long-distance journeys that will take place during those two and a half days.
 
Last year, 31 people were killed and 159 others were injured in Holy Week.

Extra vigilance for your protection

To avoid accidents, the DGT will deploy all the means at its disposal:
 
The first of them, the presence of more agents on the roads. There are an extra 400 civil guards on traffic duties. Last year there was a total of 8,800. This year a total of 9,200 traffic agents.

The 216 cameras that DGT has installed on the roads to control the use of the seatbelt, will also be used to systematically control and report the manual use of a mobile phone while driving. As can be seen in the image, the cameras capture the use of this device, so that any driver that is caught by this means will be denounced with a penalty of 200 euros and a penalty of three points deducted from their licence.

264 camouflaged vehicles that will travel along the roads and will monitor compliance with the traffic regulations, with special emphasis on monitoring the use of the mobile at the wheel. Plus

The eye in the sky


To monitor compliance with speed limits, the 724 fixed speed control points will add the 557 mobile radars that go in vehicles of the Traffic Group.

From the air there will be 10 operational helicopters and 8 drones prepared to monitor and regulate the roads.

Intensification of alcohol and drug controls In the last Easter Week, 4 out of every 10 people that died had used alcohol above the permitted limit. The rest of the year the percentage of positive is 1 in 4.

All these means are aimed at preventing accidents, since distractions, especially the manual use of the mobile, speed, alcohol and non-use of the seat belt are the main causes of road deaths.
 

100 died because of the imprudence of others last year

As a consequence of these factors, more than a hundred people die in a traffic accident, who were in compliance with the regulations and who had a correct roadside behavior, but because of the imprudence of others, their lives and those of their associates were cut short.