Case Study – How to get a SIP card (Medical care in Spain)


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Case Study – How to get a SIP card (Medical care in Spain)

We recently received a similar enquiry to this:-

“Hi, I have lived in Spain for just over 2 years. I have an EHIC card from England which will expire on June 2020. Am I able to get medical assistance just using this card and my passport in medical centres? I have ongoing health problems and am retired. I will be 68 soon. At the moment, I live in Villamartin, Orihuela Costa. Thank you.”

We responded this gentleman in the following manner:-

Thank you for your enquiry,

An EHIC card gives you the right to access state-provided healthcare during a temporary stay (6 months max) in another Europan Economic Country or Switzerland. The EHIC card will only cover medical treatment that is necessary to get you home to the UK, it will not cover ongoing treatment. If you stay in Spain for more than 6 months and 1 day you should become a resident by applying for your Residencia. Can I ask if you receive your state pension please, this will allow me to give you the correct advice and information?

The response was that the gentleman does receive a state pension. So our colleague Nicola responded again with the following:-

Perfect, in that case applying for your Residencia is much easier.

When you apply for your Residencia you have to request an “S1” from the DWP. This certificate will transfer the NHS healthcare benefits to Spain allowing you to access full healthcare as you would in the UK. After obtaining Residencia you can apply for your SIP card which will provide access to the healthcare system in Spain. You have to be Resident in Spain to obtain your SIP card. We can help you obtain both your SIP and Residencia. For Residencia we would require the following documents:



-Padron (no more than 6 months old)

-S1 certificate from HMRC, (this can take many weeks to arrive, would be best to request this first )

-Most recent bank statement from your Spanish or UK bank showing your pension contributions from the DWP being deposited, the statement must have your full name on.

-Recent awards letter from the DWP confirming your pension contributions

Should you have any problems when requesting your Padron at the Padron office, please advise them you need the Padron as part of you Residencia application.

For your SIP card, we would require the following documents



-Padron (no more than 6 months old)


Our fee for Residencia is 130€, this includes preparation of paperwork, taxes, translation on the day of the appointment and collection of your Residencia, SIP card is 40€

Should you have any queries in regards to this please do not hesitate to contact us


  • John Southern

    My wife and I live in spain we both have our Spanish padron and social security numbers I am 67 and have my state pension, my wife is 58 and works legally in Spain, can we both obtain our resedencia without having to have a large ammount in our bank account. thank you

    • Nicola Ryan

      Good Morning John,

      We will need further information to provide the correct advice, we will be in contact with you via email to discuss this matter further.

      Kind regards

  • Wendy

    Can I get a full sip card on the back of my husband who has one and is paying into the system

    • Amanda Thomas

      Hi Wendy, We need more information. Are you both retired? Or working in Spain and paying directly to the social security? Are you resident, from when? Please email this information and your original question to Yannelsis on Thanks

  • Jada

    I am 19 years old, i moved to spain last may 2018. I am in a contracted job with social security, nie but i haven’t got residencia and when looking at applying for a sip card it says that i need to provide a resident certificate? Any way to go about getting a sip card without this? Some of my family who are retired live out here and have done for years but have still found it impossible to gain residencia as they needed a lot of stuff to provide. will it be the same for me, i just want to be protected if worse comes to worse or needed a doctors appointment in the future while i’m living and working out here.

    • Nicola Ryan

      Good Morning Jada,

      If you are working here in Spain it will be very easy for you to get your residencia, you would need:
      Padron up to date (no more than 3 months old)
      Original Passport
      3 months bank statements from Spanish bank to show you live in Spain (the statement must have your name ,bank name ect)
      Working history (vida Laboral) original

      When you get your Residencia you can then apply for your SIP card. We hope this helps.

      Kind regards

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