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Global Mobility – Relocating to Spain

Residency Services

Del Canto Chambers provides world-class, personalised advice to individuals moving to Spain and large and small international businesses whose employees travel and work overseas.

We help expatriates, executives, and board directors with their reporting obligations and international tax planning, advise them on the best Spanish Visa option, and assist them through the application process.

Tax matters are very personal. Bearing this in mind, we adapt our advice to each client’s needs, providing practical, clear, and action-based guidance and recommendations to help our clients make informed decisions.

Our Global Mobility team, formed by experts, provides you with the relevant information on the residency visas, nationality and relocation tax benefits ( available and helps you decide on the most suitable option.

Our Experts in Spanish Residency

Spanish Residency Visas Available

Spanish residency visas for individuals​​

Del Canto Chambers has a specialised team of qualified advisers who review your circumstances and determine the most appropriate visa for you and your family.
The Spanish visa options available for individuals are:

Spanish residency visa for Highly Qualified Professionals

If you are a Spanish company or your company has relocated to Spain and needs to bring non-EU highly qualified professionals with specific skills to carry out the work in Spain, there is a specific visa for such a purpose: the Highly Qualified Professional Visa (HQPV).

This residency permit enables non-European Union citizens to legally live and work in Spain, particularly in highly skilled positions. Individuals eligible are those with at least three years of higher education or equivalent professional experience, graduates or postgraduates from universities and business schools, and individuals with degrees in regulated professions requiring degree homologation. To be eligible, the person must be a manager overseeing a sizable team within a company, an individual in a technical or specialised role, or a graduate/postgraduate from a reputable university or business school.

Del Canto Chambers has a specialised team of qualified advisers who can advise you on the Highly Qualified Professional Visa (HQPV) and help you secure this visa for your employees.

Registration as an European Union Citizen in Spain

Citizens from a European Union member state, another state in the European Economic Area Agreement, or Switzerland who plan to live in Spain for more than three months must apply to be registered in the Central Registry of Foreigners.

Certain documentation is required to obtain a Certificate of Registration as an EU citizen in Spain. This includes the original passport, a recent registration certificate from the Town Hall, a signed application form, proof of payment for administrative fees, and proof of appointment. Additionally, further documentation may be necessary depending on the individual’s work status.

Once registered, this certificate allows their non-EU family members to apply for a 5-year residence permit.

After residing in Spain for five years, EU citizens can apply for permanent residency.

Residence Permit as a non-European Union Family Member of an EU Citizen

The family members of a Spanish citizen or a citizen from another European Union member state, or another state in the European Economic Area Agreement or Switzerland, who do not have the nationality of one of those states when they join or accompany them, and plan to live in Spain for more than three months, must request and obtain a Union citizen family member card.

To apply for residency as a family member of an EU citizen in Spain, several documents are required. These include the original passport and photocopy, along with a DNI if the EU citizen is Spanish or a passport and certificate of EU registration in Spain if they are not. A joint registration certificate from the Town Hall, marriage certificate (if applicable), birth certificates for children (if applicable), a signed application form, and proof of payment for administrative fees are necessary. The documentation needed may vary depending on the EU citizen’s employment status in Spain.

The residency permit obtained is valid for five years and allows the non-EU citizen to work both as an employee and as a self-employed person in Spain. After this period, they can apply for permanent residency as non-EU family members of an EU citizen.

Del Canto Chambers handles the application process on behalf of the applicant. While the Immigration Office has three months to resolve the application, the submission receipt serves as proof of legal status in Spain until a resolution is reached.

Family Reunification Visa

The Family Reunification visa in Spain is a temporary residency permit granted to family members of non-EU national residents in Spain under the right to family reunification exercised by a resident individual.

The sponsor (the family member already residing in Spain) must have resided in Spain for at least one year with approved authorisation to reside for at least one more year. The sponsored family member can be his/her spouse and children. Additionally, elderly parents may be eligible if they are financially dependent on the sponsor and meet certain criteria.

This process consists of two steps:

    1. The first step requires the sponsor to apply for an authorisation to reside in Spain for his/her family member at the Spanish Immigration Office in his province.
    2. Once granted, the sponsor’s family member can apply for a Family Reunification visa at the Spanish Consulate of his/her residence.

Spanish Relocation Tax Benefits: The Beckham Rule

The Spanish tax residency system must be taken into account before you move. Under the double tax treaty, how your international income and assets will be taxed are important factors. Additionally, due to the Beckham Rule special tax regime for expats, foreign workers are considered non-tax residents when moving to Spain, which may offer additional tax advantages. 

Under the Beckham Rule regime, foreign workers who move to Spain and become residents are considered non-tax residents for tax purposes. Therefore, the tax owed on the first €600,000 of Spanish income is fixed at 24% for a certain time. In addition, non-resident status means the Wealth Tax and new Solidarity Tax will apply only to Spanish assets rather than those held in other countries. 

An expatriate’s descendants under 25 years of age (or any age if they are disabled) and their spouse can benefit from the Beckham rule, provided certain conditions are met. Talk to one of our team to find out more.

Spanish Nationality

Del Canto Chambers’s specialised team can also support you and your family by applying for Spanish nationality.
Options available to become a Spanish national:

By this Law, descendants (children and grandchildren) of Spanish nationals affected by the Spanish Civil War and the Franco dictatorship can apply for their Spanish nationality.

This Ley de Memoria Democrática offers descendants (children and grandchildren) of Spanish nationals the opportunity to obtain Spanish nationality. This law is designed to safeguard the Spanish nationality rights of those affected by the Spanish Civil War and the Franco dictatorship by enabling them to apply for their Spanish nationality. As a result, it is centred on upholding justice and advancing reparations for the victims and their descendants. The Ley de Memoria Democrática does not establish an age limit for nationality applicants, and applicants are not obliged to renounce their current nationality.

The Democratic Memory for International Brigade Volunteers and their descendants (available until October 2025) as per (Ley 20/2022, de 19 de septiembre, de Memoria Democrática) allows descendants and volunteers of the International Brigades who participated in the Spanish Civil War to obtain Spanish nationality in recognition of their efforts towards Spain’s democracy. Giving up the existing nationality or passing a Spanish language test is unnecessary. The only downside is that the applications for Spanish nationality under this law can be submitted until October 2025.

Spanish nationality by residence is undoubtedly the most common procedure. This method of acquiring nationality requires the interested person to reside in Spain for a legally specified period under certain conditions. Essentially, its foundation lies in the physical presence of the individual. Also, the application is submitted electronically.

This process is regulated and subject to a specific and detailed administrative procedure.

Throughout this process, three requirements must be met by the applicant:

  1. Legal and Continuous Residence
  2. Good Civic Conduct
  3. Integration into Spanish Society

Spanish nationality by residence offers a pathway to become a Spanish national by fulfilling certain residency and integration criteria. The process is well-defined, with clear requirements and timelines, making it accessible to those who meet the specified criteria.

Our clients have the word:

Our Expert Team

Del Canto Chambers has a specialised team ready and eager to support the application of the best Visa option available for you and the Spanish nationality applications. We invite you to contact one of our expert lawyers via phone or email for a free phone consultation. We are looking forward to assisting you.

London-based with offices in Barcelona, Palma, Ibiza, Marbella, Madrid, and A Coruña, Del Canto Chambers has over 30 years of taxation, conveyancing and Spanish relocation experience at your service. We offer a wide range of legal and corporate services. Our English-speaking lawyers and economists have a long track record of successfully assisting expats across Spain.

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Contact us for more information if you consider relocating to Spain

Del Canto Chambers specialists are constantly up to date with new legislative changes and aware of any Spanish tax and legal implications. Contact our Spanish legal and tax specialists to find out the best tax planning and corporate structures in your circumstances.

If you wish to make an enquiry, please complete the form below. We will get back to you within 24 hours.

In accordance to the Bar Standards Board, we hereby inform you that you may contact us for a quotation.

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