Lawyer | Immigration department
Laura is from Barcelona. At Lexidy, she is part of the Immigration Department. She is also a member of the Barcelona Bar Association (ICAB). Languages: Catalan, Spanish and English. You can contact her at
As you may know, Coronavirus has spread around the world during the last weeks has provoked some countries to go into travel ban and take certain measures to try to contain the epidemic, and thus prevent more people from getting infected and sick.
Spain, like other European Union countries, has taken steps to try to stop the virus from spreading further and to protect the Spanish population.
WHAT MEASURES HAVE BEEN TAKEN FROM SPAIN AGAINST THE CORONAVIRUS?
On Saturday, March the 14th, Spanish Government declared the state of alarm for a period of at least 15 days, which can be extended after approval by the Congress.
The consequences of this state of alarm are that the free movement of citizens will be limited to buying food or pharmaceutical products, going to work and carrying out necessary actions such as going to the bank to withdraw money.
At all times, if needed, people will have to go out individually.
Likewise, all classes have been suspended in all schools, from nurseries to university, and public transport will be disinfected daily.
Furthermore, concentrations of more than a thousand people have been cancelled, to prevent the virus from spreading further throughout the country.
Also, all shops that do not offer an indispensable service to society, as well as cafeterias and restaurants, will remain closed until the state of alarm has ceased.
As for air, rail and road traffic, for the time being, it is neither limited nor closed.
I HAVE AN APPOINTMENT WITH THE SPANISH ADMINISTRATION SCHEDULED FOR NEXT WEEK. WILL IT BE AFFECTED?
For the moment, all appointments made with the General Police Direction have been cancelled and police stations are not open to the public for the issuance of documents such as EU Certificates, application and collection of Foreigners’ Identity Cards or return authorisations. Once the state of alarm has ceased, it will be possible to make another appointment with the Police Station and carry out the applications.
As for the appointment with the Foreigners’ Offices or other similar offices, each office will establish its own opening criteria. However, in the event that the offices are closed, some Immigration Offices are enabling the option of presenting the applications online, for those who had an appointment granted until the 30th of April.
CAN I TRAVEL TO SPAIN AS A TOURIST AFTER THE CORONAVIRUS OUTBREAK ?
Yes, Spain has only cancelled all direct flights to Italy, but the rest of the flights remain as they were up to now. The cancellation of these flights with our neighbouring country will take place until March 25th of this year 2020.
However, it is very common to find news on radio and television about the recommendation made by experts and doctors not to travel unless it is absolutely necessary and essential to avoid crowds of people and thus contact with people who may have the disease.
As this is a fast-moving disease, the scenarios and measures taken may vary from one day to the next. Some countries have already banned the entry of Spaniards into their countries, as is the case with El Salvador, Iran, Saudi Arabia, the US or Israel.
Therefore, we cannot guarantee that other more restrictive measures will be taken or that other countries will not tighten up the entry to their country if you come from Spain.
CONSULT PREVIOUSLY TO TRAVELING THE COUNTRIES YOU SHOULD AVOID AFTER
Before making your trip, it is advisable to consult the countries you should avoid. The Ministry of Health has published a list with the areas of community transmission. In this list we can find these countries:
- China (all provinces including Hong Kong and Macao), the risk is greater in Hubei province where there has been sustained community transmission of greater intensity.
- South Korea
- Italy (regions of Lombardy, Veneto, Emilia-Romagna, Piedmont)
WHAT IF I TRAVEL TO SPAIN FROM A COUNTRY OR AREA AFFECTED BY THE CORONAVIRUS? WHAT SHOULD I DO?
If during this period, you present symptoms compatible with acute respiratory infection such as fever, cough or sudden onset respiratory difficulty, you should stay at home or in your accommodation and you should:
- Contact a medical service by telephone through 112, informing them of your travel history and symptoms;
- Avoid contact with others and wear a mask if contact cannot be avoided;
- Maintain good hand and respiratory hygiene:
- Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing with a tissue or the inside of your elbow or sleeve.
- Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and after contact with respiratory secretions. Use a hand sanitizer based on alcohol if soap and water are not available.
- Avoid hand contact with the eyes, nose and mouth whenever possible.
Bear in mind that Spain has suspended classes at educational centres and it is recommended that anyone who is able to work from home should do so.
If you are having doubts about your future or your company’s due to the recent Coronavirus outbreak, Lexidy can help you mitigate all your doubts with our solution oriented services: COVID-19 legal advise in Spain.