Obtaining a residence permit in Spain is a prerequisite for foreigners who plan to stay in Spain for more than 90 days. In the case of Europeans who can freely live and work in Spain, this procedure is rather formal.

Residence permit in Spain

Many of them formalize a residence permit only in the case of a long stay in the country, associated with permanent employment or study. For example, the purchase of real estate in Spain is not a serious reason for Europeans to obtain this document.

Residence permit in Spain for foreigners – this is not so much an official requirement for a long stay in the country, but more an opportunity to move to Europe and take advantage of the undeniable benefits of this status.

What gives a residence permit in Spain

  • Living in a country where freedom and human rights are considered the highest values along with life itself.

  • The ratio of cost and quality of life in Spain exceeds many European countries.

  • Free movement within the Schengen zone.

  • The opportunity to create a business in a stable state with a developed economy.

  • A chance to enjoy the comfortable climate, seashores and cultural life of Spain.

The list can go on for as long as you like. It is much more important to talk about the practical side of this procedure. Namely to answer the question of how to get a residence permit in Spain in 2024. Of course, the information in the article is more designed for citizens from countries outside the EU.

How to get a residence permit in Spain

The process of moving to Spain with the purpose of long-term stay (more than 3 months) begins with the registration of the appropriate visa (Visado de Residencia) in the Spanish Consulate in the country of the immigrant. As a rule, in order to obtain such a visa, which will later allow you to obtain a residence permit in Spain, you must meet certain requirements.

One of them is sufficient financial security. That is, in most cases, a foreigner must have funds to cover the costs of living in Spain. The minimum amount is 2,400 euros per month for the main immigrant and 600 euros for family members or students. In rare cases, this condition is not mandatory.

Depending on the situation, the laws of Spain allow foreigners to obtain a residence permit on the following grounds:

  • Study.

  • Employment or business.

  • Family reunification.

  • Selfless residence or pensioner visa.

  • Golden visa.

In each specific case, the Spanish authorities consider the foreigner's application in detail, study the documentation and make the appropriate decision. No one can guarantee a positive result. Let's dwell in more detail on each of the methods.

Residence permit in Spain for education

To study at a Spanish university or other educational institution, as well as for special courses, internships and research, a foreigner can and should get a student visa, and upon arrival in Spain to obtain a residence permit. The main condition here is the presence of confirmation from the official Spanish institution of enrollment in training courses or other types of scientific cooperation.

In addition, it will be necessary to confirm financial solvency at the rate of 600 euros per month and the availability of a place to live (student hostel or private rent). International students are allowed to work up to 20 hours per week and to bring close relatives to Spain, provided that their living expenses are covered.

Residence permit in Spain for employment or business purposes

In the case of official employment or business activity in Spain, a foreigner receives a residence permit. It should be noted that this option of immigration and obtaining a residence permit is quite complex and requires the fulfillment of a number of conditions. For example, the search for a vacancy in the Spanish labor market is complicated by the high unemployment rate in the country – 11-12%.

Without prior conclusion of a labor contract and registration of a work permit as a visa and residence permit will not be issued. To obtain a business visa, the company of a foreigner must be profitable, faithfully pay taxes and provide jobs for Spaniards.

Residence permit in Spain through family reunification

The right to obtain a residence permit in Spain for family reunification can be used by close relatives of the immigrant – spouses, children and parents over 65 years old. A prerequisite here is the presence of a foreigner's Spanish residence permit for at least a year and a guarantee of extension of this status for another year. Family members of the holder of a student or "golden" visa can move to Spain without meeting this requirement.

Residence permit in Spain for the purpose of disinterested residence

This option of immigration to Spain with the subsequent receipt of a residence permit is available for wealthy retirees or financially independent persons who are ready to change their place of residence for selfless purposes, that is, without the right to employment or entrepreneurial activity.

Usually for a positive decision on the granting of a residence permit in this way will be important for a specific region of Spain and as a consequence of the purchase of real estate or at least a long-term lease, as well as sufficient funds, at least 3-4 times the official minimum and preferably located in a Spanish financial institution.

A big plus can be the indication of a comprehensible reason for moving to Spain. Not just a craving for the sea, the sun, bullfighting, but, for example, in order to be closer to distant relatives or friends, to give education to children, long-standing cultural ties and so on.

Golden Visa

At the end of 2013, the Spanish Parliament adopted a special law, according to which foreigners from countries outside the EU had the opportunity to obtain a residence permit in Spain under a simplified procedure. Literally within one month. This requires an impressive amount of investment in the Spanish economy.

For example, you can get a residence permit in Spain for the purchase of real estate in the amount of at least 500 thousand euros. In this case, the object of investment is allowed to distribute to several sources. Suppose you buy an industrial building and a house on the sea coast.

In addition to real estate, the following types of investments are provided:

  • purchase of Spanish government bonds (€2 million);

  • buying shares in private companies in Spain (€1 million);

  • depositing funds in the deposit account of a Spanish financial institution (€1 million).

Holders of "golden visa" to extend the residence permit does not need to be permanently or as in other cases at least 6 months a year to be on Spanish territory. Sufficient one-time visit during the year.

Documents for a residence permit in Spain

Within a month after arrival in Spain, a foreigner must apply to the local migration office (Oficina de Extranjeros) or police station with an application for a residence permit.

The list of documents to be submitted may vary depending on the circumstances. Local officials will advise and outline the specific requirements. In most cases, the list of documents for a residence permit in Spain consists of the following groups.

Basic documentation:

  1. An application form of the prescribed form and three copies.

  2. Three color photographs.

  3. A valid passport and copies of all pages.

  4. Information about the availability of a place of residence in Spain (contract of sale, lease).

  5. Receipt of payment for services.

Additional documentation:

  • Certificate of no criminal record.

  • Medical certificate excluding serious illnesses.

  • Proof of health insurance in Spain.

  • Proof of financial security.

  • Information about enrollment in an educational institution in Spain (for students).

  • Diplomas or certificates proving qualifications (if required).

  • Copy of employment contract or business permit for self-employed persons (if required).

Documents must be translated into Spanish. The processing time for a residence permit card (Tarjeta de Residencia) in Spain varies between 3-4 months. Initially, the document is issued for one year, with the right of further extension up to 5 years, after which it is possible to obtain a residence permit and then Spanish citizenship.

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