The long-term residence permit in Spain allows the applicant to reside and work in Spain indefinitely under the same conditions as Spaniards. To obtain it, the foreigner must be legally and continuously resident in the country for a total of five years.

In addition to this option for residence in Spain, there is another type of authorization, EU long-term residence, whose main advantage is having the possibility of moving to another European country and being able to obtain a residence permit there in a much simpler way.

Given these two different types of residence, the following question arises: how can I obtain a long-term residence permit in Spain if I already have an EU long-term residence in another European state? We are talking about the case of a foreigner who wants to come to Spain and already holds an EU long-term residence permit (issued by another European country, not by Spain).

In this post, a specialist in international mobility, Celeste Mercado of Adlanter, answers the question of how to obtain long-term residence in Spain if you are already an EU long-term resident in another member state of the European Union.

What are the requirements?

1 – Not be a citizen of a State of the European Union, the European Economic Area or Switzerland, or a relative of citizens of these countries to which the Union citizenship regime applies.

2 – Not be prohibited from entering Spain.

3 – The applicant must hold an EU long-term residence authorization in another Member State.

4 – The applicant who wishes to obtain long-term residence in Spain must have financial means available:

  1. If they are not going to carry out paid activities: 400% of IPREM (Multiple Effect Public Income Indicator) + Medical insurance arranged with an entity authorized to operate in Spain with coverage equivalent to that of Spanish healthcare.
  2. If they are going to work as an employee: They must submit the same documentation for the worker and the company that needs to be submitted to process an Initial Work Authorization for an Employee.
  3. If they are going to work for themselves: They must submit the same documentation that needs to be submitted to process an Initial Work Authorization for the Self-Employed.

When should the application be submitted?

The application may be submitted at any time before entry into Spain and at the latest within three months of entering.

Where should it be submitted?

If the applicant is in Spain:

  1. If they are going to work, at the Immigration Office corresponding to the domicile where they will do their job.
  2. If they are not going to work, at the Immigration Office where they are going to establish their domicile.

If they are not in Spain: at the Consular Office.

Deadline for deciding on the application

45 days from the day following the date on which they were entered in the register of the competent body that will process them.

If the stated period elapses without the Administration having given any notification then the application is understood to have been accepted.

Once the authorization has been granted, the applicant must enter Spain within a maximum period of three months from the notification of the resolution, if they are not already in Spain.

The authorization comes into effect:

1 – If they are going to carry out work, from the moment of registration in the corresponding Social Security regime.

2 – In the event that they will not work:

  • If they are in Spain, from the notification of the decision.
  • If they are not in Spain, from the moment of entry into the national territory.

The authorization will be valid for five years and can be extended for successive periods of five years.

Can family members apply?

Yes. Members of the family of a foreigner holding an EU long-term residence permit issued by another Member State of the European Union may apply to reside in Spain if they form part of the family unit set up in the previous Member State of residence.

Which family members are included?

1 – The spouse or person with whom a similar relationship is maintained.

2 – Children who are minors.

3 – Older disabled children who are not objectively able to provide for their own needs due to the state of their health, when the EU long-term resident is their legal representative.

4 – First-degree ascendant (parents of the regrouping foreigner, or of their spouse or partner), when these are in their care, are over 65 years of age, and there are reasons that justify the need to authorize their residence in Spain. Exceptionally, when there are humanitarian reasons for doing so, an ascendant under the age of 65 may be regrouped.

How can Adlanter help you?

Adlanter are specialists in the process of obtaining residence permits in Spain for foreigners. We have more than 15 years of experience.

If you need help in processing and obtaining a Spanish long-term residence permit or an EU long-term residence permit, you can contact our experts: Residence and Work Permits.