Golden Visa - Your Passport to Citizenship

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Who Can Get a Golden Visa for Spain?

A Golden Visa enables you and your family to live and work in Europe. These schemes essentially permit people to buy their way into citizenship into that country, while not having any actual links to the country or even having to reside there. Investing in property can accelerate and lead to citizenship and a second passport.

Foreigners who intend to enter or reside, or who already reside, in Spain will have their entry and stay in Spanish territory facilitated for reasons of economic interest in those cases in which they can prove that they are:

  • Investors.
  • Entrepreneurs.
  • Highly qualified professionals.
  • Researchers.
  • Employees who make intra-corporate movements within the same company or group of companies.

To be eligible for a Spanish Golden Visa, you must make one of the following investments:

  • Purchase real estate in Spain worth at least €500,000. The real estate can be one single unit or several, with an overall worth of no less than €500,000.
  • Make an investment in the Spanish public debt of at least €2,000,000.
  • Buy shares in a company or make a deposit in a Spanish bank of at least €1,000,000.
  • Invest in a new business that will offer employment opportunities, contribute to scientific and/or technological innovation and have a relevant socio-economic impact in the area where the business will be undertaken.

In addition to the investment, you must also fulfill the following requirements:

  • You must be of legal age (+18 years old).
  • You must have no history of criminal records.
  • You must not have been refused a Schengen Visa in the past.
  • You must have health insurance in Spain.

Becoming a resident comes with many benefits, beyond the pathway to citizenship. Having a temporary or permanent residence in certain EU countries will give you greater visa-free travel. A Golden Visa for an EU country is particularly desirable as it allows the holder (and their family members) freedom of movement throughout the entire Schengen Zone. The Canary Islands are special members of the EU and part of the Schengen Zone even though they are located outside the European continent.

How to Apply for a Spanish Golden Visa?

If you have made any of the investments listed above, then you can submit a visa application to the nearest Spanish Embassy or Consulate. At the time of application, you must be committed to making the investment, but the investment does not necessarily need to be finalized.

You don’t have to be in Spain to apply for the visa, but you need a pre-visit to see your investment options up close, open a bank account, and meet with lawyers. You can go through this process yourself or with the help of experienced professionals. Once you are settled on investment, you can give Power of Attorney to your lawyer to submit your Spanish Golden Visa application and secure your deposit.

Application for family members: Your family members have to apply for their own visas to Spain as dependents. They must include documentation that proves family relation, such as birth and marriage certificates.

What Family Members Can Be Included on the Spain Golden Visa?

The family members you can include on the Spain Golden Visa are:

  • Your spouse
  • Children under the age of 18. If you have any children who are not minors but are nonetheless dependent due to any health or mental conditions, they also classify for the visa.
  • Dependent elderly parents.

Your family members will also receive residence permits and be allowed freedom of movement in the Schengen Zone.

How Long is the Golden Visa for Spain Valid?

The Golden Visa that you receive at the Embassy will be valid for one year. During this year, you have to enter Spain and exchange your visa for a Spain residence permit, which will be valid for two years.

The residence permit can then be renewed indefinitely, without any stay requirements, as long as you maintain your investment. You have to travel to Spain each time you need to renew your residence permit.

If you intend to actually live in Spain, then you can apply for permanent residence after five years of continuous residency (at least six months out of the year).

Can I Get Spain Citizenship by Investment?

Yes, Spain’s Investor Visa is a pathway to citizenship, as long as you live in Spain for at least 10 years.

Although the process of becoming a resident of Spain through investment is pretty straightforward, to receive a passport, you must live in Spain for at least 6 months out of the year for ten years.

In addition, there are other requirements for obtaining Spanish citizenship, such as knowing the language and having ties to the country. A Spanish passport will give the holder access to the EU job market and visa-free access to over a hundred countries.

Benefits of the Spain Golden Visa

Spain is part of the European Union, which means Spanish residents can travel visa-free to all Schengen Zone countries for up to three months in a six-month period, as can your family members. Other benefits include:

  • You do not have to live in Spain to renew the residence permit – but you can if you want to.
  • You can work and live in Spain legally.
  • You can bring your family members with you (spouse, children, and dependent parents)
  • You and your family members will have access to public services such as state health care and schooling.

Documents Required for Spain Golden Visa Application

When applying for a Spanish Golden Visa, you need the following documents:

  • Spain Visa Application Form
  • Two passport-size pictures. Make sure they follow picture guidelines for a Spanish visa.
  • Make sure the passport will be valid for the initial period of time you intend to spend in Spain and has at least two blank pages. You may also need a photocopy of the personal information page of your passport.
  • If you are not a citizen of the country where you live: Your residence permit.
  • Documents which prove you have sufficient income to support yourself and your family as you live in Spain.
  • Police records, proving you have no criminal background. They must be issued within the three months prior to the application.
  • Proof of health insurance (private or public) with an insurance company operating in Spain.
  • Proof of payment of the visa fee.
  • Any additional documents related to your specific case (investment or real estate purchase), as described below.

The documents you submit have to be translated into Spanish (if they are not already) by a certified translator and apostilled. 

Golden Visa application requirements for real estate purchases:

If you have purchased a property in Spain, you must prove you have acquired ownership of the property through a certificate issued by the Land Registry within the three months prior to the application.

This certificate must include the purchase amount (no less than €500,000).

If the property purchase has not been entered in the Land Registry yet, you can simply submit proof that the documents have been entered for filing along with the proof of payment.

If the purchase of real estate has not been finalized, you can submit the preliminary contract, including a down payment, and a letter from a financial institution in Spain proving the availability of the required funds.

For example: purchase of a house in Spain worth 800.000€.

The Investor can contribute the amount of 500.000€ and the rest of the price can be taken out a mortgage loan. Please note that apart from the purchase price you will have to pay the Property Transfer Tax, Notary, Registry and Lawyer (if applicable). These expenses in turn must be outside the 500.000€ mentioned.


Requirements for Spain Investor Visa

To prove your investment when applying for a Spanish Investor Visa, the following documents have to be submitted:

  • Investment in the Spanish Government Debt: A certificate from the Bank of Spain or another financial institution, stating you are the sole owner of the investment for a period of at least five years.
  • Investment in stocks or shares in a Spanish company: A statement of the investment from the Spanish Registrar of Investments of the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness.
  • Investment in quoted shares: A certificate of the financial intermediary stating your investment, registered at the Spanish National Stock Market Commission or at the Bank of Spain.
  • Investment in a bank deposit: A certificate from the financial institution naming you as the sole owner of the bank deposit.

Is It Possible to Get a Loan to Apply for Spain Golden Visa?

No, you cannot apply for a Golden Visa for Spain if you acquire the money via a loan. You must make the initial investment in full, through your own funds and you must be the sole owner of the investment.

However, if you purchase a property worth more than €500,000, then you can use loans and financing to pay for the amount exceeding €500,000.

Is It Possible to Make a Joint Investment to Get a Spain Investment Visa?

Even if you make a joint investment or purchase, each individual investment has to meet the minimum requirements. As such, if you decide to purchase a property, each person involved has to pay €500,000 to be eligible for the Golden Visa. It is not possible to split the investment into smaller amounts, as you would not be eligible for the Golden Visa residency.

How and when to apply for authorization as an investor according to the new criteria for the application of the entrepreneurs’ law

In particular, we are going to refer to those persons who have acquired a property or several properties with a total value of 500,000 euros. The Immigration Office considers it compulsory for the purchase of the property to be free of encumbrances over the minimum compulsory amount to be invested, and therefore, it is necessary to accredit that, at least those 500,000 euros, are free of encumbrances..

Therefore, for people who have already purchased the property, they will have the option of applying for an investor authorization, once they already have:

1) The deed of sale.
2) The registration of the acquisition of that immovable property in the Land Registry, and
3) All relevant taxes have been paid.

Two possible options:

For the person who is outside Spain and who has already acquired the property:
You will be able to apply for an investor visa if you already have your deed of sale, your certificate from the Land Registry where it is stated that you are the owner of the property and where it is also stated that it is free of encumbrances. This application is made at the Spanish Consulate in the country of origin or in the country where you are residing legally.
Option of directly requesting authorization as an investor if you are in Spain. In this case, it could be for having a short-term visa, for example, a tourist visa, or if you have some kind of legal residence in Spain.

In that case we would eliminate the prerequisite of acquiring a visa as an investor and we could directly do the investor authorization through the Immigration Office (Large Business Unit).

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