Residence Visa for Highly Qualified Professionals in Spain

Obtaining a work visa or a residence permit in Spain based on employment has always been and still is quite difficult, but only if you are not a highly qualified specialist. On September 29th 2013, the Law of Support and Internationalization of Entrepreneurship came into force, thanks to which not only the employees themselves, but also their family can receive Spanish residence.

So, what is the difference between this type of residence permit?

In the first place, before its existence, it was almost impossible to obtain a long-term work visa since it was necessary to prove the absence of a similar Spanish specialist in Spain from the 5 million registered citizens, because this country has one of the highest levels of unemployment in Europe. Therefore, only engineers in the space industry or sea captains could count on success.

– Secondly, despite the fact that the type of residence permit is called ” Highly Qualified Professionals “, this does not mean that you must have a higher education to obtain it. It makes sense in this paragraph to do the HQP abbreviation. They can be considered as a specialist with a university degree or education in a business school, or a specialist without a higher education, but with a certain job profile and an interested employer.

– Thirdly, to receive the residence of the HQP, the applicant can be located both in Spain with a travel visa or a student card, and abroad.

– Fourth, not only spouses and minor children can accompany HQP, but also parents and, most importantly, adult children with a dependency.

Among other things, the decision on this type of residence is officially reviewed and takes 20 working days, while documents for other types of residence permits are up to three months.

What are the requirements for companies and applicants?

• The basic conditions can be divided into two blocks: either you have an invitation or offer to work in Spain and at the same time you graduate (or graduated) from a university, business school, that is to say you are now considered a highly qualified specialist.
• Or, by not having a higher education, you are invited by a company that has various criteria, namely:
• The company has more than 250 employees;
• The annual turnover is 50 million euros or the availability of own funds for the amount of 43 million euros;
• In the last three years, the company has received foreign investment to an amount of 1 million euros;
• The amount of foreign investment of at least 3 million euros;
• If the company is small or medium, the state of its belonging to the strategic sector of the economy must be confirmed officially;
Either the company develops a significant business project, in which one of the following conditions is expected to officially confirm plans for an increase in jobs; investment in the region of the country; or contributes to the interests of Spain in politics, economics and scientific progress.

An indisputable condition is the salary of a foreign specialist, which is designated according to the position and profile of the employee.
An employee can be invited to work if they meet the HQP criteria, regardless of the size, the time of set up (i.e. a young company that has not yet worked during the first reporting period) and the specialization may even be an individual entrepreneur.
The first card is issued with a maximum period of 2 years (in the case that the employment contract is issued for 2 years or indefinitely) or a residence permit is issued for the termination of the employment contract.
To submit an application, the inviting company must submit documents about the employee’s higher education or confirm that it is a large company or that it operates in a strategic area (according to the list of the General Directorate of Trade and Investment of the Spanish Ministry of Economy) or involve a specialist to develop a meaningful project. (According to the conclusion of the General Directorate of the Ministry of Trade and Investment and Economy of Spain.

As already mentioned, the applicant can be at the moment of requesting a permit both outside of Spain and within the country, which makes it possible, for example, to apply for a residence permit for the applicant who is in Spain with a Schengen visa type or change the residence permit, even if it is a different type (for example, from a student card to can a HQP residence permit). More importantly, if you apply for a residence permit for an applicant situated in Spain, then they must be legally in the Spanish Kingdom (before your student card or residence permit expires or, in the case of a C visa, within the 90 days of legal residence every 6 months in the EU).

If the applicant is in their country of residence, the application is sent first to the Spanish administrative authorities and, after receiving a positive response, they can safely go to the Spanish Consulate in the country of residence to receive a D visa and enter the country to receive the card. As for the extension of the residence of the HQP, this has the same conditions 60 days before its end or 90 days later.

Another important characteristic of the HQP residence is the possibility of getting a residence permit for accompanying family members. In fact, within the framework of the residence permit, close relatives of dependents also have the right to apply for a residence permit. The concept of close relatives includes legal spouses or even common law, minor children or adult children economically dependent on HQP, relatives in a direct ascending line for dependents. What is interesting is that all of them not only have the opportunity to live in Spain, but also have the right to work if their age is approved by labor legislation. The employment quota does not apply to these people.

The deadline for receiving documents:
• Residence permit – up to 20 business days
• Visa – up to 10 business days (depending on the consulate).

In addition, the applicant has the right to be in the country from the moment the application is sent until the completion of the documentation process.

Right now, obtaining a residence permit for a highly qualified specialist in Spain is one of the main services provided by us here at Pro Spain Consulting. We will help you immediately to prepare not only a folder of documents that meet the criteria of the Ministry of Employment and Social Protection of Spain, but also to choose the optimal strategy so that moving to sunny Spain with your loved ones is quick, easy and achievable.

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