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Spain Retirement Visa

If you are foreign national who wants to retire to Spain then there are several options that could enable you to relocate.

For more information about the Retirement Visa options, when to retire to Spain, the application process  and to receive bespoke advice on the process, reach out to one of our professional legal advisers today. Call us at (+44) 333 4149244, or contact us online today.

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    Overview of the Spain Retirement Visa

    Having a Spain Retirement Visa could be appeal to financially independent people who want to retire or live in Spain without being employed.

    A Retirement Visa could allow you to become a resident of Spain without having to work in Spain for a given period of time.

    However, Spain does not issue specific retirement visa and there is no visa directly called a ‘Retirement Visa.’ However, there are other alternative options visa routes that allow you to move for the purpose of retirement in Spain.

    The most popular visas for retirement in Spain are the Golden Visa and the Non-Lucrative Visa. You will need to apply for one of the two if you wish to live in Spain as a retiree.

    Eligibility Criteria for the Retirement Visa for Spain

    For residents of the EU, retiring in Spain is quite simple. As an EU citizen, you can live, work, or retire in Spain without a visa or residency permit.

    However, Non-EU citizens have to apply for a visa and a residence permit. There are two types of visas that Non-EU citizens can acquire:

    • The Golden Visa or Investor Visa, and
    • The Non-Lucrative Visa or Non-Working Residence Visa

    Spanish Retirement Visa: The Golden Visa

    The Spain Golden Visa is a short-stay residence visa that allows you to live in Spain by investing a specified amount in real estate, Spanish companies, or your personal businesses.

    Having a Golden Visa allows you to bring along your family to Spain. It is also a viable path to permanent residency and eventually citizenship.

    Qualification for the Golden Visa

    You need to meet either of the following criteria to qualify for a Spain Golden Visa:

    1. Invest in securities and shares

    This route will require a minimum initial investment of 2 million euros in Spanish public debt instruments. These are securities backed by the government, so it is generally regarded as a relatively safe investment for the Golden Visa retiree. You must be the one making this investment and you must be able to provide proof of this.

    However, Spain provides a cheaper alternative for people who want their securities in non-government hands. Instead of using the method above, you can invest 1 million euros in stocks or shares in investment/venture capital funds registered in Spain, in Spanish companies undertaking actual business activities, or in bank deposits in Spanish financial institutions.

    For the option of investing in a Spanish company, you need to ensure that the business is viable and lucrative – you must be able to demonstrate this with evidence.

    2. Create a ground-breaking business

    Here, you will have to establish a business in Spain but you need to make sure your company fulfils three important requirements.

    • It must create employment
    • It must have a significant socio-economic impact on the country, and
    • Contribute to scientific and technological innovations.

    The visa may be secured by the applicant’s representative or project manager in this situation.

    3. Invest in real estate

    Another way to qualify for the Golden Visa is through real estate purchases. You can buy a residential or commercial property, as far as it is not already owned by someone else. This method requires a minimum investment of 500,000 euros.

    Unfortunately, you cannot apply for a Golden Visa with funds acquired through a loan. The Visa forbids this, as it negates your claim of self-sufficiency. The original investment must be made entirely with your own money, and you must be the only owner of the investment.

    However, if the cost of the property you’ve invested in exceeds €500,000, you will be allowed to use loans to cover the difference.

    IAS offers advisory services to help you choose the Golden Visa investment method that works for you, and how to commence the process.

    Other Compulsorily Eligibility Requirements for the Golden Visa

    Apart from the financial requirements mentioned above, you’re required to also meet all of the following qualifications.

    • You must be older than 18 years old.
    • You should not be an unlawful Spanish resident.
    • You have not been denied residency in some specified countries or in Spain
    • You are not on the list of unwanted individuals.
    • You have access to either private or public healthcare during your stay.
    • You can show that you have enough money to sustain yourself without working during your stay.
    • You haven’t been convicted of a crime in the last five years.
    • You don’t have any of the illnesses listed in the 2005 regulation

    Get in touch with our expert immigration lawyers to receive assistance on Spain Retirement Visa.

    What Are the Required Documents for Golden Visa in Spain

    Here are some of the documents you’ll need to submit to receive a Golden Visa.

    • National visa application form​
    • Passport-sized photograph (It should be recent and with a white​ background)
    • Valid passport (Original and a photocopy of the passport page or pages containing biometric data). The passport must have two blank pages and a minimum validity of one year.
    • Documents confirming the investment. This varies depending on the investment opportunity you selected.
    • Documents proving financial means. You must be self-suffiecient.
    • Criminal record check certificate issued by your home country.
    • Private health insurance certificate or Public health insurance certificate

    Foreign papers must be legalised or apostilled and, if required, accompanied by an official translation into Spanish. You will need to obtain an Apostille Stamp on the following documents.

    • Criminal Record Background Check
    • Medical Report
    • Marriage Certificate

    Financial Requirements for the Golden Visa

    Asides from the initial investment cost, you will need to prove that you have sufficient financial means to fund your stay in Spain. In this case, it’s necessary to provide evidence of an accredited and regular source of income for you and your family.

    The minimum amount is 400% of Spain’s Public Multiple Effects Income Indicator (IPREM). This is about 27,792.96 euros. Additionally, you must add 100% (about 6,948.24 euros) of the IPREM for each family member you intend to bring over.

    What is the Duration of the Golden Visa?

    The Golden Visa is valid for one year or for the same amount of time as the residence permit. You do not need to obtain a Foreigner’s Identity Card or follow a second process for a residence permit. The Golden Visa comes with its permit.

    Application Process for the Golden Visa

    After picking your investment option and gathering your documents, you should apply for your visa at the Spanish Consular Office in your home country or you can be in Spain for the application process. You may be required to come in for an interview.

    Embassy/Consular staff will take your biometric data once you’ve finished the interview and turned in your paperwork.

    You should hear from the Consular Office within 20 days months of submitting your documents.

    Benefits of the Golden Visa

    Despite the steep cost, the Golden Visa has several benefits that make it an attractive Retirement Visa. They are:

    • High mobility: You can travel visa-free through the Schengen zone
    • Family: Certain family members can be added to your visa. They include:
      • Your spouse.
      • Financially dependent children and adult children who have not created a family unit of their own
      • Relatives in the ascending line in the investor’s care.
    • No Minimum Stay Requirement: In contrast to other types of visas in Spain, you simply need to spend one day in Spain every year to keep your Golden Visa.
    • An easy path to Spanish citizenship.

    For assistance with Spain Retirement Visa, get in touch with us today.

    Spanish Retirement Visa: Non-Lucrative Residence Visa

    If you do not have the capital for a Golden Visa, the Non-Lucrative Residence Visa (NLV Visa) is your next best option. As the name implies, you cannot carry out any gainful employment in Spain while on this visa. To this effect, you need to be financially sufficient and you must have the financial means to support yourself and any accompanying family member in the country without working.

    Required Documents for Non-Lucrative Visa in Spain

    You need to submit the following documents to be eligible for the NLV visa:

    • Filled and signed National visa application form
    • Filled and signed copy of the Non-working residence visa application form (EX-01 Form)
    • A recent colour passport photograph
    • A valid, unexpired passport(original and photocopy of data pages)
    • Proof of financial means
    • Proof of valid private health insurance (or public)
    • Criminal record check certificate from country of residence
    • Medical certificate accrediting that you do not suffer from one of the diseases listed in the 2005 International Health Regulations.

    Foreign papers need to be legalised or apostilled and, if required, accompanied by an official translation into Spanish. You will need to obtain an Apostille Stamp on the following documents.

    • Criminal Record Background Check
    • Medical Report
    • Marriage Certificate

    Financial Requirements For the Non-Lucrative Visa

    You do not need to invest in the Spanish economy, but you must be able to show evidence of self-sufficiency to be eligible for the visa. The minimum amount is 400% of Spain’s Public Multiple Effects Income Indicator (IPREM). This is about 27,792.96 euros. Additionally, if you intend to bring family members, you must add 100% (about 6,948.24 euros) of the IPREM for each family member you intend to bring over.

    You will also need to prove that you will not work while on a visa in Spain.

    In the case of retirees, the applicant must be a recipient of a convertible currency State pension or a capitalizable life annuity paid by a public or private institution in convertible currency and/or investment accounts. You will be required to attach your bank statements and tax returns to your application.

    If you are of working age, you must submit documentation of your pension benefits or a letter from your employer terminating your employment.

    If you are working for yourself, you must submit an affidavit before a Notary declaring your willingness to forgo employment while staying in Spain with the Retirement Visa.

    Applicants from certain countries, like the United States, are not permitted to have outstanding loans or mortgages in the United States when applying for residency.

    What is the Duration of the Non-Lucrative Residency Visa?

    The NLV is valid for 90 days. Once you have obtained the visa, you must request a Foreigner Identity Card (TIE) within your first month of arrival in Spain. This application should be made at the Foreign Nationals’ Office or the corresponding Police Station.

    Your Identity/Residence permit is valid for one year. However, you must stay up to 183 days in Spain to qualify for renewal.

    You can renew your residence permit every two years, and apply for permanent residency after five years of living in Spain.

    Application Process For a Non-Lucrative Visa

    You cannot apply for this retirement visa in Spain. The application must be made in person at the Spanish Consulate in your country of origin or where you are legally resident. You must book an appointment at the Consulate first.

    You will be called for an interview, and they will take your biometric data.

    The Consulate will likely give you feedback within 3 months of your application.

    If you have any questions about Spain Retirement Visa, our team is happy to assist.

    Tax Requirements for a Retirement Visa to Spain


    Once you have all obtained your Retirement Visa, you’re ready to travel to Spain. If you intend to live in Spain for more than 6 months or 183 days, you will be a tax resident and your worldwide income becomes taxable. You are eligible to pay Spanish income tax on your worldwide income if you meet the conditions below:

    • If you have an annual employment income of more than €22,000
    • If you’re self-employed in Spain or own a business in the country
    • If you receive rental income that is more than €1,000 a year
    • If you have capital gains and savings income that is more than €1,600 a year

    Keep in mind that you must report any foreign assets that are worth more than €50,000. Also, check if your country has formed any tax agreements with Spain, so you are not taxed double.

    Tax Deductions and Allowances as a Tax Resident

    Taxpayers in the country are also entitled to a number of tax deductions and allowances. For instance, there are tax allowances based on your age.

    • The personal allowance for those under 65 years of age in Spain is €5,550.
    • It will be €6,700 if you’re between the ages of 65 and 75.
    • And €8,100 for anyone over 75 years of age.

    You may also be eligible for an extra allowance if you have children living with you who are under 25 years old. You may be able to request the following allowance for your children if you plan to live in Spain for retirement:

    • €2,400 for the first child
    • €2,700 for the second
    • €4,000 for the third
    • €4,500 for the fourth

    And an additional allowance of €2,800 for each child under three years.

    Difference Between the Golden Visa and the Non-Lucrative Visa

    Although the Golden Visa and NLV are equally attractive retirement options and both allow you to stay with family members, they have distinct differences.

    Non-Lucrative Residency VisaGolden Visa
    Investment requiredNoYes (Minimum of 500,000 Euros)
    Visa application duration2 to 3 months20 days
    Work allowedNoYes
    Taxable ResidencyYesUnless you reside in Spain for up to 6 months
    In-person visa applicationYesNo
    Representative visa applicationNoYes (when you are establishing a business)
    Stay requirement183 days in a yearJust one visit is enough
    Apply from SpainNoYes

    Amongst the two kinds of Retirement Visas, the Golden Visa has the fastest application time. However, we recommend that you start the application for your Retirement Visa at least 6 months before you intend to move there, especially if you intend to use the NLV route.

    How Can IAS Help With Your Spain Retirement Visa?

    At IAS, we will guide you through the process of selecting the appropriate route for you and your loved ones to retire to Spain.

    We provide qualified immigration assistance to anyone navigating the complexities of the Spanish immigration system. Our specialised immigration lawyers are always available to assist you at any stage of your plans to retire to Spain.

    For more information about our services and how we can help you, reach out to a member of our team today. Call us at (+44) 333 4149244, or contact us online.

    We offer immigration advice sessions as face to face appointments at all of our UK offices, or via the phone.

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