UK Expats In Spain Urged To Register With Town Halls

By Editorial 06 November, 2013

The British consulate in Malaga has urged British nationals to register at their local town halls in order to be eligible for social services relating to healthcare, housing and residential care.

The importance of inclusion on the "Padrón," or town hall register, was highlighted at a workshop for social workers, charities and community associations at which difficulties faced by British nationals were discussed.

Rosslyn Crotty, who is British Vice-Consul in Malaga, said that there had been an increase in the number of Britons found to be "in desperate need of assistance" after illness or due to cash problems. She added: "We want people to think about the future, speak to their families and take steps to plan for the years ahead before it's too late."

British nationals who have failed to register on the Padrón have found themselves with no-one to look after them on being discharged from hospital, and ineligible for residential care. Also, some expats have no entitlement to healthcare due to having failed to register for a social security card. Further, there have been cases of British residents in Spain who have found themselves homeless and have been unable to access support charities because they have either lost their passport or allowed it to expire.

It was noted at the workshop that British expatriates often have greater expectations of social support from the state than is provided. In Spain, family and friends are expected to provide much more assistance, and there are laws to prevent family members from being abandoned to the state.

The workshop was attended by Age Care, Age Concern Caritas, La Cala Diabetics Association, Lux Mundi, the Red Cross, the Royal British Legion, and the Soroptomists, as well as by social workers from across Malaga.

Tags: United Kingdom | Spain | Expats | Healthcare | Welfare | Healthcare |


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