I am a British citizen who has lived and worked in Spain for 12 years, the possibly that the fallout from Brexit might significantly reduce my rights in Spain is a chilling one.
As a European Citizen with an employment contract, the Spanish state treats me more less as equal to a Spanish Citizen. I have the right to work, to own property, to contribute to and benefit from the Health and Social Security Systems without any significant difference from if I were a Spanish Citizen.
Brexit could bring abour material changes to that situation.
I say could because the effects are, of course un-knowable until the negotiations take place. It is possible (probable, even) that all sides on the negotiations will honour the status of current residents. Especially between UK and Spain where there are significant numbers of both nationalities in each others countries. The Ruddites and racists pushing for Brexit will, I assume, be far more concerned with shutting down relations with Poland, Bulgaria and Romania where the flow of migration has been more one-sided than France, Spain and Portugal.
Nevertheless, any agreement on my status in Spain would be dependant on a deal being made within the the two year period allowed by Article 50. If a deal were not made, it is feasible that I would be subject to Visas, work permits. It is possible I would need to fund my own health insurance.
More worryingly, my employer is not set up to employ non Europeans. of the 5,000 – 10,000 permanent and temporary members of staff in the 20-odd businesses in our group, across five european countries, the number of non European citizens is virtually nil, and British employees can be counted on one hand.
It would be completely rational for the HR department to decide that the bureaucratic overhead of employing non-european staff outweighs the relatively cost of a a handful of redundancy payouts.
So, I have set on the path to applying for Spanish Citizenship.
Brexit is causing me to undertake my own form of SpEntry.