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Sunglasses, passport and map Guide To Spain’s Golden Residency Visa Expat Tips

If you are from outside of the European Union and wish to live in Spain for longer than 90 days, you will need to apply for a residence visa.

The Golden or ‘Investor’ visa has gained in popularity in recent years due to the simplicity and fast turnaround times following the application.

This particular immigration scheme is for those who have made a ‘significant investment’ in Spain and is available to both investors and entrepreneurs looking to set up a business.

Applicants must be over the age of 18, non-EU residents and not live in a country where EU laws apply.

For many, the Golden Visa is the fastest and easiest way for those outside of the EU to acquire Spanish residency.

Due to its simplicity, the Investor Visa has become very popular, especially with wealthy individuals from China and Russia who have the financial clout and wish to expedite the residency process.

The investment immigration scheme also allows other members of the applicants family to apply for residency. This includes:-

  • The spouse or unmarried couple.
  • Children who are minors or those of legal age being financially dependent on the holder.
  • Parents in their charge

Family members can apply for their visa at the same time as the main applicant or at a later time.

Unlike other visas, this permit allows you to continue to live and work anywhere in Spain and its territories.

Who is the Investor Visa for?

This visa is for both investors and entrepreneurs looking to permanently live and work in Spain (if required).

In order to be approved for the Golden Visa, the main applicant will need to make a ‘sizable investment’ in Spain.

These can include any of the following financial assets.

  • Public debt (€2 million).
  • Shares (€1 million).
  • Investment funds, investment funds of close-end type or venture capital funds set up in Spain (€1 million).
  • Bank deposits (€1 million).
  • Real estate (€500,000).
  • Business projects: there is no minimum investment requirement, they must be of general interest: Creation of jobs, Social and economic impact on the geographical area where they are made, A significant contribution to scientific and/or technological innovation.

How long does it last?

The Golden/Investor Visa is the only one that allows you to live and work in Spain for an initial period of two years. The other visa options only provide you with an initial residency right of one year.

The scheme is made up of a visa and residence permit.

The initial visa lasts for 6-12 months and must be renewed.

The Residence Permit part initially covers you for two years.

After the first two years, you may apply for an extension of five further years and as a result, will become eligible for permanent residency.

  • Real estate assets not formalized: visa/residence permit: 6 months.
  • Visa: 1 year.
  • Residence permit: 2 years
  • Renewal of the residence permit: 5 years.

Renewal does not require effective residence in Spain.

What are the benefits of the golden visa?

  • You and your family may live anywhere in Spain and its territories
  • You and your family members may work in Spain
  • Fast-track process means that the decision on your visa application is made within 10 days of application
  • Residence permit decisions are made within 20 working days of application
  • Renewal is not dependent on your effective residence in Spain.

What are the income requirements?

Other than the requirement to have made a sizable investment in Spain, you will also need to have a very minimal income to support yourself and your dependents while living in Spain.

Investors - In order to support the main applicant, you must have a monthly income of 400% of the IPREM, which in 2021 is €564.90. This means that the main applicant will need to demonstrate an income of at least €2,259.60 per month.

For each additional family member, 100% of the IPREM is required, which in 2021 amounts to €564.90 per month or its equivalent in the foreign currency.

Entrepreneurs - This group will need to only prove an income of 100% of the IPREM which would equate to €564.90 per month in 2021.

For each family member, 150% of the IPREM per month is required with more than two additional members, 50% of the IPREM for each family member per month.

How do you apply for the Golden visa?

Like the non-lucrative visa, you must initiate the process and request an appointment, by emailing your nearest Spanish consulate.

The following page provides an interactive map where you can find your nearest Consulate or Embassy in your home country.

http://www.exteriores.gob.es/portal/en/serviciosalciudadano/paginas/embajadasconsulados.aspx

Below we show the procedure for those applying from the UK. For other countries, the process will be almost identical.

There are three main consular regions in the UK which are covered by London, Manchester and Edinburgh.

You will need to email one of the following addresses below stating in the subject line which visa you are applying for.

London
http://www.exteriores.gob.es/Consulados/LONDRES/en/Consulado/Pages/LocalizacionContacto.aspx
cog.londres.residencia@maec.es

Manchester
http://www.exteriores.gob.es/Consulados/MANCHESTER/en/Consulado/Pages/LocalizacionContacto.aspx
cog.manchester.vis@maec.es

Edinburgh
http://www.exteriores.gob.es/Consulados/EDIMBURGO/en/Consulado/Pages/LocalizacionContacto.aspx
cog.edimburgo@maec.es

In the SUBJECT line, you must specify the type of residence visa you wish to apply for.

Within your email, you will need to include the following:-

  • The applicant's PERSONAL DETAILS (full name, nationality, passport number and telephone number)
  • TYPE OF RESIDENCE VISA you wish to apply for.
  • REASONS you are requesting the visa
  • DESIRED DATE for the appointment at the Consulate office (only on TUESDAYS and THURSDAYS of each week, between 09:30 and 12:00).

Your appointment time and date will then be confirmed via email.

Note that you must apply for the visa 90 days prior to the desired date of entry into Spain.

Required application documents

To apply for the Golden/Investor Visa, you will need to provide the following documentation during your appointment.

  • National visa form - Will need to be completed, signed and dated. The form can be downloaded here.
  • A recent photo with white background - See official requirements here
  • Valid passport or travel document - Must have a minimum validity of 12 months and two blank pages.
  • Photocopy of all passport pages
  • Valid UK residence permit and photocopy
  • Criminal records certificate - Only for those over 18 years. This must also be legalised and translated into Spanish. Must not be older than three months.
  • Bank certificate - Proof of financial means that satisfy the income requirements.
  • Private Health Insurance - Proof of private health insurance contracted with a company authorised to operate in Spain. (Contact Health Plan for appropriate policies)
  • Payment of the relevant visa fee which is payable at the Consulate on the day your application is accepted.

Private health insurance is a requirement

Note that with the Golden visa, it is a requirement to take out private health insurance cover from a company operating in Spain.

Please contact us here at Health Plan if you would like us to recommend the most appropriate insurance for your visa application.

Empadronamiento

If you will be living in Spain for six months or more, it is recommended that you register yourself on the padron (Padron Municipal de Habitantes) at your local town hall.

It's not obligatory to register if you are staying in Spain for less than six months, however, if you want to obtain your TIE residence card, apply for state healthcare, get a drivers licence or carry out other administrative tasks, you will need to register.

Registering yourself on the padron provides you with a number of benefits and allows the local government to receive the correct level of funding from the central government.

Although it is not a strict requirement, if you want to benefit from better public services for yourself and others in your community, you really should take the time to register.

You can read more about registering on the padron here.

https://www.healthplanspain.com/blog/expat-tips/87-what-is-empadronamiento.html

Official guidance on the investor visa from the Spanish government can be found at the following links below and are in English.

https://extranjeros.inclusion.gob.es/ficheros/UnidadGrandesEmpresas/ley_14_2013/tripticos/triptico-invertir-INGLES.pdf

http://www.exteriores.gob.es/Consulados/LONDRES/en/Consulado/Documents/RIC-RIV-RVT-RPE-REP-REM%20ES-EN.pdf