ICEX-INVEST IN SPAIN

Residence Programme. Entrepreneurs Law

Highly Skilled Professionals

Companies wishing to incorporate non EU foreign professionals: management staff, highly-qualified professionals and graduates or postgraduates from universities and prestigious business schools, for a professional or employment relationship may apply for a residence authorization for highly-qualified professionals.

At the time of application, foreign nationals may be abroad or already in Spain in a regular situation. If they are abroad, they must apply for the relevant visa at the Spanish Consulate once the company has obtained the residence authorization.

• A single authorization for living and working valid anywhere in Spain including relatives if they meet the expected age labour regulations.

• No labour market test applied.

• Free movement within the Schengen member states.

• Streamlined processing: 20 days for residence authorizations and 10 days for visas, procedures can be arranged through a representative.

• Combined processing for family members.

• The application for a residence permit will extend the validity of the residence or stay of the permit holder in Spain until the end of the procedure.

REQUIREMENTS

PROCESS

DEADLINES

REQUIREMENTS

General requirements

• Not be in Spain in an irregular situation.

• Be over 18 years of age.

• Have no criminal record in Spain or in the countries where they have resided for the past five years, for offenses defined in the relevant Spanish legislation.

• Not be subject to an alert issued for the purposes of refusing entry in the territorial space of countries with which Spain has signed an agreement in this regard.

• Have a public or private health insurance policy with an insurance company authorised to operate in Spain.

• Have sufficient financial resources for themselves and their families during their residence in Spain.

• Have paid the visa or authorization processing fee.

The spouse or common-law partner and any children under 18 years of age or those of legal age who cannot provide by themselves and have not constituted their own family unit and parents who are dependant, who accompany or join the foreigner may apply jointly and simultaneously or successively for their authorization and, where appropriate, their visa. In this case, evidence must be provided of being in compliance with the requirements listed in the preceding paragraph.

Specific requirements

• Management staff and highly qualified professionals of a company or group of companies that fulfil any of the following requirements:

- An average staff of more than 250 employees in Spain within three months prior to the application.

- An annual net turnover in Spain exceeding €50 million.

- An equity or net assets value in Spain exceeding €43 million.

- An annual average gross investment volume from abroad of a minimum of €1 million in the three years immediately before submission of the application.

- Companies with an investment stock value over €3 million according to the Foreign Investment Registry of the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness. 

• Management staff and highly-qualified professionals of SMEs belonging to a strategic sector, certified by the Directorate General for Trade and Investment.

Compliance with these requirements must be certified once and will be registred by the Unit of Large Companies and Strategic Sectors (UGE-CE) for three years on a renewable basis, provided the requirements are maintained.

• Management staff and highly-qualified professionals of a business project of general interest in Spain, certified by the Directorate General for Trade and Investment, in compliance with one or several of the following conditions:

- A significant increase or maintenance of employment within the company, the activity sector or region where the activity is to be carried out.

- A significant investment with a socio economic impact in the region where the activity is located.

- Reasons in the general interest for trade policy and investment.

- A significant contribution to scientific and/or technological innovation.

• Graduates and post-graduates from universities and prestigious business Schools.

PROCESS

APPLICATION FOR A RESIDENCE AUTHORIZATION FOR HIGHLY-QUALIFIED PROFESSIONALS

WHO: Application may be submitted by a representative.

WHERE: The Large Business and Strategic Sectors Unit [Unidad de Grandes Empresas y Colectivos Estratégicos (UGE-CE)]. Application must be made online through the electronic site of the Ministry of Employment and Social Security. Click here to apply online (in Spanish) 

DOCUMENTATION (translated into Spanish):

Application form

• Application form for the highly-qualified professional. Click here to download the application form*. Please find translations to help you filling the official Spanish form here

• Application form for family members, if it is the case. Click here to download the application form*. Please find translations to help you filling the official Spanish form here

• Fee. Click here to download the application form.

General documents: Click here to download information.

Specific documents for highly-qualified professionals: Click here to download information.

Documents for family members: Click here to download information.

APPLICATION FOR A REPORT OF STRATEGIC SECTOR OR A PROJECT OF GENERAL INTEREST

Prior to applying for a residence authorization for the highly skilled foreign professional to be hired, SMEs belonging to a strategic sector or developing a business project of general interest must obtain certification from the Directorate General for International Trade and Investments of the compliance with the requirements established by law.

The report must be applied for to the Directorate-General for Trade and Investment at any public registry. Application can be made online through the electronic site of the Ministry by submitting the application form together with the documentation required at the “Generic Instance” procedure: Click here to apply online

• Application for a report of Strategic Sector or Project of General Interest for hightly skilled professionals (click here to download the form)

APPLICATION FOR A VISA FOR HIGHLY-QUALIFIED PROFESSIONALS

Candidates who are abroad must apply for a one-year visa submitting the highly-qualified residence authorization issued by the UGE-CE.

WHO: Application may be submitted by a representative.

WHERE: The Spanish consulate in the applicant’s country of residence. Select the Spanish office of representation of your place of residence.

DOCUMENTATION: Information at the Consulate.

APPLICATION FOR A RESIDENCE CARD FOR FOREIGNERS

WHERE: Police station. Select the police station nearest to your address.

WHO: The residence authorization holder in person.

DOCUMENTATION:

• Application form for a residence card for foreigners, for every family member if it is the case. Click here to download the application form*. (Please find translations to help you filling the official "MI-TIE" Spanish form here.)

• Passport.

• Copy of residence authorization.

• Three photographs.

• Payment of fees: residence card.

RENEWAL OF RESIDENCE AUTHORIZATIONS

The renewal may be applied for 60 calendar days prior to the expiration of the permit or within 90 calendar days thereafter, without prejudice to the initiation of the corresponding sanctions proceeding.

WHO: Application may be submitted by a representative.

WHERE: The Large Business and Strategic Sectors Unit [Unidad de Grandes Empresas y Colectivos Estratégicos (UGE-CE)]. Application must be made online through the electronic site of the Ministry of Employment and Social Security. Click here to apply online (in Spanish)

DOCUMENTATION:

Application form:

• Application form for the authorization holder: Click here to download the application form *. Please find translations to help you filling the official Spanish form here

• Application form for relatives: Click here to download the application form *. Please find translations to help you filling the official Spanish form here

• Fee: Click here to download the application form.

Documentation required for renewals: Click here to download information.

- Model of sworn statement of maintenance of the family bond: Click here to download model

Management staff and highly-qualified professionals of a business project of general interest: prior to applying for the residence authorization renewal, the Directorate-General for Trade and Investment (Subdirección General de Comercio Internacional de Servicios e Inversiones, Dirección General de Comercio Internacional e Inversiones) must issue a report certifying that the business project is still of general interest.

Application for this report must be submitted at the Registry of the Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness (Paseo de la Castellana, 162, Madrid) or at any Public Registry in Spain.

• Application for a report for management staff and highly-qualified professionals of a business project in the general interest. Click here to download the form

Once you obtain the report you may proceed to apply for the renewal of the residence authorization.

DEADLINES

Decisions on visa applications will be made and notified within 10 working days, except in the case of applicants subject to prior consultation as provided for in Article 22 of the Visa Code, in which case the decision time period will be that provided for as a general rule in the mentioned Code.

The residence authorizations will be processed by the Unit for Large Companies and Strategic Economic Sectors in a maximum time delay of twenty days from the filing of the application. If after this time period, a decision has not been adopted, the authorization will be deemed to be granted due to administrative silence.


*Download brochure in PDF, editable format, does not work with all versions of browsers. More information.


Last updated: 22|10|2018

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