Golden Visa in Spain: Residency by investment
Brief presentation of Golden Visa in Spain
Spain implemented the Golden Visa Scheme in 2013 to support entrepreneurs and internationalisation. The Spain Golden visa programis a great opportunity to make this conuntry your habitual residence, especially if you want to invest in property.
Suitable for citizens of the UK, USA, United Arab Emirates, India and China
The main aim of the Golden Visa program is to promote the economy in Spain and to support the creation of new jobs, and of course the entry of new talent, because this visa makes it easier for an investor to gain a residence permit through an investment, wich is why is also known as investor visa.
The Spain Residency by investment program
The Spanish Golden Visa programme allows different types of investments:
- Invest a minimum of 500.000 € in Spanish Real Estate (mortgage free). This programme focuses on promoting property investment.
- Invest 2 million € in Spanish public debts.
- Invest 1 million € in Spanish companies (shares).
- Deposit 1 million € in a Spanish bank account.
- Start a business project in Spain of general interest, which creates employment, contributes to technological and/or scientific innovation or has a socio-economic impact on the local area. However, there is more to be considered before this visa is granted.
Golden Visa Requirements
There are some requirements for the Golden Visa in Spain card which have nothing to do with the investment itself:
- Being 18+ years old.
- Having public or private health insurance by a company authorised to operate in Spain.
- Disposing of sufficient financial means, covering personal and family living expenses, for residency in Spain.
- Not having been refused entry into any of the Schengen countries.
- Not having entered or stayed illegally on Spanish territory.
- No existing criminal record in Spain, nor in the country of residence during the last 5 years.
- Highly qualified professional.
- Employee transferring within the same company or group of companies.
How to obtain the Spanish residence by investment
There are some requirements for the Golden Visa in Spain which have nothing to do with the investment itself:
Once the necessary requirements to apply for the Golden Visa have been verified, the documentation must be submitted to the institution in charge of processing the application.
In this regard, it is important to consider that the Golden Visa is not subject to the general foreigners’ regime, but is subject to the Entrepreneurs Act, whose main objective is to attract talent and investment.
As a result, the application is not reviewed by the foreigners’ office of the applicant’s chosen place of residence. This review is carried out by the Large Companies Unit, a section responsible for determining the suitability of each application.
An important factor of obtaining a Investor Visa in Spain is the documents which are required. The documents vary, depending on the investment you are going to make:
- If you have chosen investment in property as a way of obtaining the Golden Visa, we will need to provide the certificate of domains and charges from the Land Registry and the deeds of the properties acquired.
- Those who choose to invest in Spanish shares or stocks must present the declaration of the investment issued by the Investment Register of the Ministry of Economy (shares) or the certificate of the financial intermediary registered with the National Securities Market Commission (shares).
- For those who decide to invest in public debt, the requirement will be the presentation of the certificate issued by the Bank of Spain or the entity through which the investment was made, in which it is clear that the applicant is the holder of the purchase.
- Lastly, if the chosen method is investment in bank deposits, it will be necessary to present the certificate that reflects our ownership of the deposit made. This document must be issued by the financial institution that is the beneficiary of the deposit.
- If the application is made in Spain, it must be submitted to the Large Companies Unit.
- If the application is made outside of Spain, it should be submitted to the Spanish consulate office.
How long is the Spain Golden Visa granted for?
The period of validity of the Golden Visa varies depending on whether the application is made in Spain, for wich you must be legal in the country, or abroad.
The residence permit will be for 1 year if it is requested from abroad and for 2 years if it is requested in Spain.
Once this period has elapsed, the beneficiary may apply for the renewal of the Visa which, once obtained, will result in a further 5 years of residence permit.
In order for the renewal to be approved, two main requirements must be met:
- Proof that the investment for which the Visa was obtained is still valid.
- Having been in Spain at least once during that year.
What family members can be included on the Spain Golden Visa?
The Golden Visa also allows you to obtain permits for your spouse or person in an analogous relationship, as well as for minors under 18 years of age who are dependants. Permits may also be requested for those over 18 years of age who are still economically dependent on the applicant and who do not have their own family unit. If the applicant’s parents are dependent on him/her, they may also be included.
In summary, the family members that can be included are:
- Spouse or person in an analogous relationship
- Dependent minors under the age of 18
- Persons who are financially dependent on the applicant and who have not yet formed their family unit.
- Parents in a situation of dependency with the applicant.
What taxes will I have to pay once I have the Spanish Golden Visa?
The Golden Visa Benefits
This programme requires a very specific situation, but the benefits related to your Spanish residency are remarkable. Holding a Spain Golden Visa means:
- It grants you entry into the EU (Schengen area).
- You can apply for the same permit for your spouse or partner, minor children or of legal age, whom -financially depend on you, including also dependants in the ascending line.
- You only have to visit Spain once a year in order to maintain the permit, and even then staying for extended periods is not necessary.
- The first residence permit for investors is valid for two years. Once that period has expired, non-EU investors who are interested in residing in Spain for a longer period may apply for renewal of the residence permit for successive 5-year periods, as long as the conditions are maintained.
- You obtain the right to work as an entrepreneur or employee once you’ve been granted the 2-year permit.
- After five years it is possible to gain permanent residency and after ten years citizenship.
At Pellicer & Heredia we provide a large range of services for investors. Our professional and dedicated team has many years of experience in legal advice, management, real estate, conveyancing, new visas, immigration issues, residency, and investment opportunities for globally-minded investors. Thanks to our expertise and deep local knowledge, we are able to give investors a professional, tailored and reliable service, including the management of the Spanish Investment Visa.
The Golden Visa in Spain after Brexit
Prior to Brexit, being able to reside in Spain was a fairly straightforward matter for any British national, as this was done under the EU regime, which entailed a process that presented few difficulties.
With Brexit, British citizens have been forced to look for alternatives, with the Golden Visa and the Non-Lucrative Visa being the most popular options, as they pose fewer difficulties than, for example, the application of a regular work permit.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the amount of money do I need to invest to get the Golden Visa in Spain?
This depends on the option you choose as a form of investment. If you choose the option of investing in assets and real estate, the minimum contribution will be €500,000. If you choose to invest in bank deposits or shares in Spanish companies, the minimum outlay must be €1,000,000. Finally, if the investment is made in public debt, it must be at least €2,000,000.
Can the investment be made through a company?
Yes, but you need to fulfill two requirements and one condition.
- The applicant who applies for the Golden Visa needs to have the majority of the voting rights of the company.
- The applicant has to have the powert to appoint or dismiss the board directed members.
- The company needs to be addressed in a country wich is not a tax heaven country.
How long does it take to get a Spanish Golden Visa?
The deadline for the decision to be taken is 20 days from the moment all the documentation is submitted.
Once the decision has been taken and communicated to the interested party, he/she has a period of one month to submit the application for the Golden Visa at the Spanish Consulate in his/her country of origin. Then it will be necessary to visit Spain to present the application with the approval that has been obtained previously.
Would I be able to work in Spain with the GV?
Yes, with this permit you can both, work and reside in Spain.
Is it possible to lose the Golden Residence Permit once is obtained?
Yes, it is possible to lose the rights to a Golden Visa. The loss may be due to the liquidation of the investment made to obtain it or on the other hand, because one of the mandatory requirements for obtaining it has not been fulfilled.
How long do I have to spend in Spain to retain my GV?
With the Golden Visa there is no obligation to stay in the territory. You will only have to travel to Spain to renew your permit.
This changes if you would like to apply for permanent residency. For this you need to live in Spain for at least five years and a minimum of six months per year. In the case of citizenship, the minimum time of residence in the country is 10 years.
Am I allowed to travel visa-free in Europe with a valid Spain Golden Visa?
Yes, this is one of the benefits of obtaining the Golden Visa in Spain, you will be able to travel throughout the Euro zone with the same conditions as a Spanish citizen.
How long before I can become a Spanish citizen?
You will be eligible to apply for Spanish citizenship after ten years of residence.
When can I sell the property that I used to obtain the GV?
If the property was the investment that was submitted for the permit, then you will not be able to sell it until you obtain permanent residency, because if you do, the application will be refused when you renew your Golden Visa.
Is it possible to apply for a loan in order to obtain the Spanish Golden Visa?
No, this is not possible. To apply for the Golden Visa it is necessary to make the entire initial investment from your own funds.
Can I use a mortgage to get a Spain GV?
As with a loan, you cannot qualify for a Golden Visa by taking out a mortgage. As mentioned above, the initial investment must always be made with your own funds.
What happens if I rent the propety I buy?
Nothing, you are allowed to rent the property without consequences for the status of your visa.
What properties do I need to buy to get the Golden Visa in Spain?
You can buy any type of property as an investment for your permit.
If I get the Golden Visa, can I then apply for a Spanish Passport?
No, obtaining such a permit does not allow you to apply for a Spanish passport.
Do I need an NIE (Spanish Identity Number for Foreign Nationals)?
In the case of acquiring property in Spain, it is necessary to have a NIE, which is the identification number for foreign nationals in Spain.