Spain Work Visa Explained

For many reasons, Spain is a country that receives a great number of immigrants per year, due to the great offer in work, quality of life, tourism and its relevant location in the Iberian Peninsula and great closeness to different countries of Western Europe, and the European Union as a whole.

That is why; it is not surprising that thousands of people from many different countries overseas come to Spain to look for a better living and an opportunity to work. However, in order to do so they need a corresponding Visa to have a legal job, with many different types depending on the conditions of the applicant and process to obtain it.

So, do you need a visa to work? Keep on reading, since we will be including valuable information about this topic, which can be relevant at the moment of applying for this requirement to work legally on Spanish soil.

Different Ways to Get the Work Permit

A work visa is a document that allow non-Spanish and non-EU residents to work legally in Spain, as an instrument that helps the country to regulate the migratory status and study cases of new residents arriving to Spanish soil.

Now, there are many different types of work permits to apply for, and they depend on different conditions and situations in which the applicant is in at the moment of requesting it.

In most cases, asking for a work permit in Spain requires the applicant individual to go to the embassy or consulate they correspond to and start the process, which can be different in terms of requirements from one type of work visa to the other. In the next section, we will be addressing the most common types of work visa in Spain.

  • Social Integration (“Arraigo Social”)

The Social Integration or “Arraigo Social” visa is one of the most required in Spain, and it is focused for those citizens living in the country for quite a while and want to regularize their migration status.

In details, among the requirements to apply for this type of permit are: the applicant must have lived in Spain for at least a period of three years in a row and not leaving the country for more than 120 days, outstanding fluency in Spanish language and proof that they are completely integrated into Spanish society.

Regarding job requirements, applicants must have a job offer that includes at least 30 hours per week, or in case of freelancers they must deliver business plans and contract that are equal or surpass the one-year minimum wage, which is 6.400 Euros,

Finally, at the moment of applying for this temporary residency that lasts 1 year only and renewable.

  • Student Visa Modification

A Student visa is a migratory document that allows people to live and study in Spain, but while individuals have this permit they simply cannot work. Nevertheless, for those who have studied in the country for at least three years or now graduated, they can ask for a Student Visa Modification and change their status in the country that will allow them to have a job.

For individuals who have the purpose of changing from Student to Labour Visa, certain requirements must be met. First of all, a job offer from a company or enterprise must exist that involves at least 30 hours of working time per week, or applicants can be freelancers that must deliver business plans and contracts covering at least one-year minimum wage.

So, can you have a job on a Student Permit? The answer is not, and that is why this modification is possible to be performed, by meeting the described requirements.

  • High Skilled Workers

Those professionals who graduated from college can apply for a Highly Skilled Workers permit and start working in Spain in their area of expertise. In fact, when applicants attend and graduate from a prestigious university worldwide or have a job offer from a big relevant enterprise, there are a lot more possibilities that the visa will be provided to the applicant.

The main requisite as mentioned previously is that applicants must be college graduates and also have a job offer that matches with their career path. In the same way, as a rule of thumb and something that practically guarantees the approval of the visa is that the applicant would earn 25.000 Euros a year, respecting the job offer they have.

Unfortunately, since this is a visa that must be approved by the Ministry of Labour and introduced by the employer, it can take up to 8 months to be processed. This is a temporary labor residency visa that is valid for two years.  If you are seeking advice regarding your High Skilled Worker visa, MySpanishResidency can help.

  • Tech Entrepreneurship

The Tech Entrepreneurship residency permit is one special type of migratory document that is provided to those that are able to prove to have a high-tech business idea to pull it off, by showing the applicants that count with technical knowledge and resources to carry out the idea and establish a profitable and functional business.

For this visa to be given, the applicants must show a business and financial plan that actually must be reviewed by the Ministry of Economy. Also, the individual asking for the migratory document must be legally established in Spain, at least with a tourist permit, or ask for it from outside the country through an individual´s corresponding consulate.

Similar to the previous examples, the Tech Entrepreneurship is a temporary status as a document that lasts for two years, with a renewal option after this time period.

Get the permit by obtaining the residency

With the Social Integration, Student Residence Permit Modification, High Skilled Workers and Tech Entrepreneurship, among other types of residencies to live legally in the country, at the moment that is obtained the applicants automatically get the permit and are allowed to work within Spanish soil, by following the characteristics of the permit that was provided and under the legal estimated time.

Most of the temporary types of visas in the country involve labor permits since it means that the individuals are planning to stay in the country at least 1 or 2 years. On the other hand, for short-term visas is not common to have a permit, since this type of migratory document is focused on people who will visit Spain for days or weeks tops, with no lucrative or economic activity whatsoever.

  • Self Employed Residency Permit

For those who want to start their own business in Spain or labor as a freelancer online, they can apply for the Self Employed permit, with a process that they can start from Spain or from outside via the consulate.

Among the requirements, the applicant must have less than three years living in Spain and also prove with a business plan or contract that they will be able to earn at least 6.400 Euros a year with their labor, being the minimum-wage figure for that time period. It is valid for one year only.

  • Wrapping Up…

There are many different types of permits in Spain, and every one of them has to do with a specific situation that must be studied by the applicant, in order to meet the requirements more easily.

For more information about Spanish visa, please contact the Spanish Embassy. You can find the location of the embassy in your town from here: