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Information on Brexit

The Trade and Cooperation, Information Security and Nuclear Cooperation Agreements reached between the European Union and the United Kingdom after Brexit, in terms of applicable Social Security legislation, include an article concerning the event of workers on board ships flying the flag of another State very similar to Article 11.4 of Regulation (EC) No 883/2004, the content of which indicates:


For the purposes of the present subject, activity as an employed or self-employed person which is normally carried out on board a ship that flies the flag of a member State shall be deemed to be an activity pursued in said member State. Nevertheless, a person who carries out an activity as an employee on board a ship that flies the flag of a member State and receives remuneration for this activity from a company or person that has their place of business or registered office in another member State, shall be subject to the legislation of this latter Member State, as long as they reside in that Country. The company or person who pays the remuneration shall be considered to be an employer for the purposes of said legislation.


Consequently, as from the entry into force of the respective Agreements, Spanish workers employed on a British-flagged ship and paid by a company or person with its registered office or domicile in Spain will be subject to the legislation of Spain if they are residing in Spain.


In terms of Maritime Health and given that Brexit implies the exit of the United Kingdom from the European Union, as of 1 January 2021, British citizens who wish to work on board a Spanish flag vessel and wish to request a medical examination for maritime embarkation, must meet the requirements for citizens of countries that are not members of the European Union or part of the European Economic Area Agreement, i.e. they must present an alien identity number, passport or residence card and a work permit or equivalent authorisation and certificate of having passed the course of  basic training or equivalent in accordance with section A-VI/1 of the STCW-78/95 Convention Training Code.


There are currently 93 UK nationals affiliated to the Special Social Security Scheme for Sea workers, 54 are unemployed and 5 are in cessation of activity.


Of the total number of people affiliated to the Special Social Security Scheme for Seafarers, 312 registered workers are working on 31 UK-flagged vessels. In addition, 25 workers are employed on 12 UK-flagged sport and pleasure boats.

In terms of pensioners under the Special Social Security Scheme for Sea Workers, there are 31 pensioners of UK nationality, most of whom are resident in Spain, and 70 pensioners resident in the UK, 66 of whom are of Spanish nationality.

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