Tax Identification Number (NIF)


The Tax Identification Number (NIF) is an alphanumeric code, used in Spain, whose purpose is to identify taxpayers and legal entities in the country.

The Tax Identification Number (NIF) is an alphanumeric code, that is, it is made up of numbers and letters. The purpose of the NIF is to facilitate the Public Administration the identification of personalities, both legal and physical.

The NIF, for the identification of legal persons, was previously called the Fiscal Identification Code (CIF). However, since 2008, the CIF term suffered an extinction to be integrated into the NIF.

This alphanumeric code is extensive for all the countries that make up the planet. However, in these, the name may vary, since the name, due to language or culture, may change.

Difference between NIF and DNI

Although both concepts tend to be confused, NIF and National Identity Document (DNI) are not the same. In the case of natural persons, the NIF identification code coincides with the code presented by the DNI.

However, for legal persons, the relationship between NIF and DNI is non-existent. That is, the two concepts are not related.

Difference between NIF and NIE

These two concepts also tend to be confusing. However, despite the fact that both have the same function, they are distinguished in the physical personality to which it refers.

That is, first of all, the NIF refers to legal and physical personalities with Spanish nationality. That is, those who have Spanish nationality, either because they were born in the territory or have subsequently acquired it.

While, on the other hand, the Foreigner Identification Number (for its acronym, NIE) refers to the identification code that the Ministry of the Interior assigns to natural persons who have obtained residence in Spain. That is, those who, without possessing nationality, have residence in Spanish territory.

NIF format

The Tax Identification Number, as we mentioned earlier, is a code that provides identification to natural and legal persons in the country. Therefore, this is unique and exclusive for each of them.

The NIF consists of 9 characters. Of which, one character is a letter, while the remaining eight form a numerical composition.

For natural persons, this is made up of 8 numbers plus the check digit.


NIF of a natural person: 47861626 - A

For legal persons, this is composed of a letter, which determines the legal nature of the person, as well as a composition of 7 numbers that follow, plus the check digit.

The letter that includes the code represents the type of society, the nature, to which it corresponds. For example, "A" if it is a corporation, or "B", if it is a limited liability company.


NIF Banco Santander: A - 3900001 - 3

Extinction of the CIF and replacement by NIF

As of 2008, according to the new decree, the CIF is no longer issued as an identifying code for legal persons and companies. By means of the new decree, after repealing the current one, the definitive use of the Tax Identification Number for the identification of companies is defined, unifying both concepts.

A unification that does not present notable differences. In this regard, the business NIF is a number that, as was the case with the CIF, identifies legal persons in the same way. The letter has the same function as in the CIF, while the first numbers, like its predecessor, refer to the province in which the company is incorporated.

That is why this change does not represent any notable change in practice. This measure represents only a change in the term, by which the old CIF is called, now NIF.

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