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A Comprehensive Guide to Spain’s Golden Visa Program for Expats

Moving to a foreign country can be an exciting yet challenging endeavour especially since Brexit for the Expat community. For many expatriates seeking new opportunities and a change of scenery, has led to Spain emerging as a popular destination. Spain offers an attractive pathway for non-European Union (EU) citizens to gain residency through the Golden Visa program. In this blog post, we will provide an overview of the Golden Visa process in Spain and offer some helpful tips to navigate through the application process smoothly.

What is the Golden Visa Program?

The Golden Visa program is to help those looking to reside in Spain who are non EU citizens by an investment scheme introduced by the Spanish government in 2013. It offers non-EU citizens and their families the opportunity to obtain residency permits in Spain by making significant investments in the country ( minimum €500,000 in real estate purchase excluding tax). The program was brought in by the Spanish government to attract foreign investors outside of the EU  and  to stimulate economic growth.  Once a golden Visa is obtained, you will have the freedom to enter/leave as many times as you like and for any amount of time whilst also having the additional benefit of being able to work in Spain should you so wish. You are eligible for non-residents tax if you stay in Spain for 182 days or more in the year.

Eligibility Criteria:

To be eligible for the Golden Visa program in Spain, applicants must meet certain requirements, these include the following:

  1. Being at least 18 years old
  2. Having no criminal record
  3. Having valid health insurance
  4. Proof of sustainable funds – €28,200 (income, savings or a combination totaling) +€7,200 per dependant/family member, these figures are per annum.
  5. Proving the origin of funds for investment
  6. Making a qualifying investment in Spain, such as real estate, business projects, public debt, or bank deposits.
  7.  Different Types of Investments:
  1. Real Estate: Investing a minimum of €500,000 in residential or commercial property excluding tax. This includes multiple properties totalling €500k or more
  2. Capital: Investing a minimum amount  of €1 million euros  in shares of Spanish companies or investment funds( please be aware that it is a Spanish registered  business you are investing in if you choose to go this route).
  3. Job Creation: Creating employment opportunities by starting a business venture that benefits the Spanish economy.
  4. Public Debt: Purchasing Spanish public debt securities with a minimum value of €2 million.
  5. Bank Deposit: Depositing at least €1 million in a Spanish financial institution.

The Application Process:

The Golden Visa application process involves the following steps:

1) Gathering Documentation: Collecting and preparing the required documents, such as valid passport, health insurance, proof of funds, investment details, and background checks.

2)  Obtaining Spanish Residency: Applying for a Spanish residence visa at the Spanish consulate,embassy or a local solicitor, you can find where your local embassy is on the gov uk website.

3) Entering Spain: Once the visa is granted, travelling to Spain and applying for the Golden Visa within 30 days of arrival.

4)  Residency Permit: After the application is submitted, the authorities will issue a residency permit, allowing you to live and work in Spain.

Renewal and Permanent Residency:

The initial residency permit is typically granted for one year and can be renewed for an additional two years and then a final 2 years totalling 5 years. After five years of continuous residency with the golden visa, you  may be eligible to apply for permanent residency in Spain, which allows for greater freedom and benefits such as dual nationality, support from the government and much more.

Helpful Tips:

a. Seek Professional Assistance: It’s highly recommended to consult with an immigration lawyer or a specialised agency experienced in Golden Visa applications. They can provide valuable guidance and ensure compliance with the complex legal requirements.  Get in touch with the Camerons team today for all your help & support.

b. Plan Your Investment Strategy: Carefully consider your investment options and choose the one that best suits your needs, financial capacity, and long-term goals.

c. Prepare Documents in Advance: Start gathering the necessary documents well in advance to avoid delays in the application process. Ensure all documents are properly translated and legalised if required.

d. Learn Spanish: While not mandatory, having a basic understanding of the Spanish language can be beneficial in your day-to-day life and interactions with authorities.

e. Explore the Country: Take the time to explore different regions in Spain, visit potential investment areas, and learn about the culture and lifestyle before making your final decision.

The Golden Visa program in Spain offers a promising pathway for non-EU citizens seeking residency in a vibrant and culturally rich country. By understanding the process, meeting the requirements, and seeking professional help. 

If you are looking for more information on the golden visa or not sure what visa best suits you, contact a member of the Camerons team today.

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