"Golden Visa" is expected to be enacted soon
27 September 2013
Spain’s new Residency Law has been ratified by the Congress of Deputies following its approval by the Spanish senate. Once the legislation has been signed by the King it will be published in the official state gazette (Boletín Oficial del Estado) and will become law. This could be as soon as next week.
Under the new legislation – which has not been amended from the original draft law – non-EU citizens who invest at least €500,000 (without finance up to that amount) in residential, commercial property or land will be able to live legally in Spain and and can travel within the 26-country Shengen Zone. Applicants are entitled to buy multiple properties to meet the €500,000 qualifying level, and can be either private individuals or corporate entities provided they comply with certain requirements.
There is no requirement that any property has a specific use, allowing owners to rent out their properties for private or commercial use. The first step for investors is to apply for a visa that allows them to live in Spain for one year. There is no obligation to spend a minimum amount of time in Spain during this period as long as they can prove that they have visited Spain at least once.
Once an investment has been made, and before the expiry of the first year’s visa, investors can then apply for a residency permit which entitles them to live in Spain for two years, renewable for another two years after that, as long as the investment threshold of €500,000 is maintained. There is no limit to the amount of times this two-year residency can be renewed.
After 5 years of continuous residence in Spain, applicants can apply for an unlimited residence permit. As is currently the case, after 10 years’ residency in Spain, one can apply for Spanish nationality (provided that all other requirements are complied with, such as being resident in the country for a minimum of 183 days per year).