Spain permanent residence requirements: everything you need to know

Written by Juan Madridejos Velasco and Luis Alberto Álvarez Moreno, Notaries in Barcelona and partners at J&LA Notarios Asociados.

As you may already know, from the Notary we do not provide consulting or support services related to Spain permanent residence… However, since lots of our foreign customers frequently ask us about it, we have prepared this small guide. 

We hope this will help! And if you have any questions related to a specific Notary service, feel free to contact us. 

The Basic Spain Permanent Residence Requirements

Spain is an amazing country with a great landscape, with places to live, work and do business. It also has a vibrant culture, incredible cuisine and dozens of historical sites. If you wish to live in Spain for long, it is only natural that you consider applying for a permanent residence.

Here are a few Spain permanent residence requirements that you must meet if you wish to live here with full benefits.

Number of Years

permanent residence means that you have the full rights to live in the country after five years. During the period, you have rights similar to those of a Spanish resident. There are several routes to becoming a permanent resident in Spain. However, they all include spending a few years in the country on a different country’s visa. The journey is different if you are an EU citizen.

Apart from having lived long enough in the country, there are other requirements, as pointed out below.

  • You must prove that you have adequate financial resources or an adequate income.
  • You must have valid health insurance that you can use in Spain.

Requirements for EU Residents and Students

Residents of EU countries or those with an EU Blue Card from an EU country only need to have lived in Spain for at least two years before applying for Spanish permanent residency. However, if you have a student visa, you are only deemed to have lived half the time you stayed there. Here is an example: if you have been living on a student visa for four years, you are deemed to have stayed for two.

Other Vital Information

Ensure that you have lived a sufficient number of years before starting the process. The police issues certificado de residencia that shows how long you have been living in the country so that you figure out how much longer you need to stay in the country before making an application.

The Ministry of Interior handles the overseas immigration services. However, the process starts at the local police station as it is the main contact with the people on the ground. You can also make your application here before it is forwarded to the ministry for handling.

Permanent residence differs from citizenship in that you have to have lived for at least ten years in the country to start the process of becoming a citizen. Second, if your country does not allow dual citizenship, you will have to renounce that of your home country. Third, being a citizen gives you the full right to vote in an election.

How Do You Go About Applying for Permanent Residency?

Apply for permanent residency at least three months before the expiry of your current visa. This gives the authorities time to go through the application while you are still legally in the country.

This process requires you to present your passport and other documents to your nearest police station to make an application.

  • A medical certificate and health insurance
  • Proof of staying for the required time period (payroll or tax returns could be used)
  • Proof of residency
  • Certificado de residencia if you have one

In some cases, you can go straight to the Ministry of Interior You will fill out the EX-17 application form, which will be forwarded with your documents to the Ministry of Interior.

Notary services we offer at JLA Notarios

As mentioned earlier, the Notaries do not take part of the Spain permanent residence application process. This article is informative since we do not offer Spain permanent residence nor can follow the procedure for you.

Notaries in Spain use to formalize legal documents such as contracts, purchases of land, mortgages, wills and inheritancesconstitution of companies and mercantile contracts… We considered we had to write this article because our clients frequently have doubts on how to get the residence.

In case you need some Notary services in Barcelona, we’ll be very glad to help! Our office is located in the center of the city and our team speaks English. Feel free to contact us through the contact form, by phone, email and even WhatsApp!

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