How easy it can be to obtain the Permanent residency in Spain for non EU nationalst
Global Investments GIC's insight:
Everything you need to know about the new law offering qualified Spanish residency in return for investing in Spanish real estate (the so-called “Golden Visa” law), and how to use a property investment to get Spanish residency as a non-EU national.
Spain is introducing a new law to encourage foreign entrepreneurs to invest in Spain.
The objective of the law is to stimulate foreign investment in Spanish real estate, public debt, and job creation. It is also intended to stimulate demand for Spanish property.
This law will enable non-EU nationals to get qualified residency permits in return for investing in Spanish real estate (and other assets), leading to permanent residency in Spain if certain conditions are fulfilled. The key points of the draft law are summarized below.
Spanish residency, and the ability to travel freely in Europe as a consequence, will be a major attraction for many non-EU investors. Added to which, Spanish property prices have crashed into bargain territory, creating some excellent investment opportunities. It’s an attractive combination of residency and bargain prices for investors from outside the EU.
But foreign investors should not let the residency permit distract them from the most important consideration, which is to invest wisely.
Once the law is passed, the residency permit will be just a formality for investors who satisfy the criteria, though investors should take care to hire professional legal help to make sure the understand the requirements before they invest. So investors should focus first and foremost on identifying the best investment opportunities. The residency permit will follow (assuming the application is done correctly, the criteria are satisfied, and the paperwork is in order).
It is a safe bet that residency permits will be used to market some toxic, overpriced real estate investments over the next few months and years. Non-EU nationals interested in residency should be on their guard.
Working with leading experts in immigration law, conveyance law, and property professionals, like us , helping you identify sound investments that satisfy the residency criteria, and putting you in touch with all the people you need to help you achieve your goals of investing your money wisely, getting residency in Spain, and avoiding the cowboys.
Types of residency permits under the draft law
Here’s how it works:
Residence visa for investors (year 1) The first step for investors will be to apply for an investment visa that allows them to live in Spain for at least one year. There is no obligation to spend a minimum amount of time in Spain in this period.
This visa will be authorised in Diplomatic Missions and Consular Spanish Offices and can be issued for one, two or multiple entries into Spain.
These visa applications shall be processed and notification sent within 10 working days, except in case of applicants subject to prior consultation.
Residence authorisation for investors (years 2 to 5 or more)
Once an investment has been made, and after the first year, investors can apply for authorisation to live in Spain for two years, renewable for another two years after that (and on), so long as the investment threshold of €500,000 is maintained (see below).
There is no limit to the amount of times this two-year residency can be renewed.
Properties can be bought and sold during this period, so long as the investment threshold is maintained.
There is no obligation to spend a minimum amount of time in Spain, so investors can remain tax resident outside of Spain, whilst benefiting from Spanish residency and the freedom of unlimited travel and stays in the EU.
Processing and granting the residence will be done by the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Applications will be responded to within 20 working days from the submission of the application. If there is no answer in this period, the application shall be considered as accepted.
Long-term residence and Spanish nationality (Year 5 onwards, optional) After five years of continuous residence, investors can apply for permanent residence in Spain.
Likewise, after ten years of residence, Spanish nationality can be requested. In such cases, an effective justification of at least six months of residence must be provided, (unless due cause exists).
The investment threshold for real estate is €500,000 or more per investor.
To apply for residency, proof of the investment(s) must be provided with a Property Registry filing (certificate). If this certificate is not yet available, then the notarised deeds and proof that the deeds have been submitted to the Property Registry must be provided.
The investment can be comprised of:
One or several properties.
Of a residential, touristic, rural, commercial or industrial nature
Rural land, developed land, buildings under construction, or decrepit buildings
Investors must use at least €500,000 of their own funds, which must come from transparent sources that comply with existing legislation on money laundering and so on. Above that threshold there is no limit to debt financing, for instance with a mortgage in Spain.
Use Restrictions There are no restrictions on property use. Investors can use the property in anyway that is legal according to planning permission, zoning laws, and so on.
Company Ownership You can make the investment through a company so long as it is not based in a tax haven and you have control of the company.
Other investments that also qualify for residency:
- Two million Euros in Spanish government bonds - One million Euros in stocks or shares of Spanish companies, or bank deposits in Spanish banks.
Other administrative requirements
Not to have entered or stayed illegally in Spain, or been refused entry into any Schengen countries
18 ears or older
No criminal record
Not listed as undesirable in Spain
Public or private health insurance valid in Spain
Economic resources to support the applicant and dependents
Authorisation or visa processing fee
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