Can I get a Spanish passport if my grandparents were from Spain? How almost 185,000 people are taking advantage of new law – but there’s a catch 

ALMOST 185,000 people are taking advantage of Spain’s new passport law, but could you also be entitled to one? 

Hundreds of thousands have requested Spanish passports under the new law

One year after the new law was introduced, some 182,400 people have applied for Spanish passports. 

Over 50% of these requests have already been approved, amounting to 91,996 new Spanish passports. 

The law was introduced as part of the Ley de Memoria Democratica (The Law of Democratic Memory) in October 2022. 

Perdo Sanchez introduced the legislation to further address the legacy of Franco’s dictatorship in Spain. 

During the Francoist era, many people fled the country fearing persecution. 

Known as the ‘Ley de Nietos’ (Grandchildren’s Law), the new passport regulations give their children and grandchildren the right to request Spanish passports. 

It is a development of the ‘Ley de Memoria Historica’, established between 2009 and 2011. 

This law saw 500,000 descendants of republicans exiled during the Francoist regime request Spanish citizenship.

However, it is believed thousands of these requests are still unresolved. 

The original law only included those exiled between the start of Franco’s dictatorship (1936) and 1954. 

Now, the Ley de Memoria Democratica has expanded the deadline to 1978. 

The new law has had over 200,000 more applicants than the original version. 

It also applies to the children and grandchildren of those that left Spain for ‘economic reasons’. 

Some 5,000 people left Spain to come to the UK during the Spanish Civil War and subsequent Francoist regime. 

Thanks to the new law, their children and grandchildren could now gain Spanish passports.


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