Drafted for Found Valencia Property S.L.U by Sr Ignacio Aparicio, Managing Partner of the Valencia Office of Olleros Abogados, a Spanish Law Firm with a team of more than 80 professionals in its offices of Valencia and Madrid.
Contact details at bottom of article.
OBTAINING SPANISH RESIDENCE VISA THROUGH REAL ESTATE ACQUISITION
On September 28th, 2013, the Law 14/2013, of September 27th, to Support Entrepreneurs and their Internationalization (hereinafter, the “Law 14/2013”) was published in the Official State Gazette (“BOE”).
The Law 14/2013 creates a new visa for investors establishing several events which allow any non-resident to apply for a visa or residence authorization in Spain. In time, one of the most usual ways to obtain these authorizations will, in all probability be by acquiring a Spanish real estate.
The gradual implementation of Law 14/2013 in matters of residence authorization through real estate acquisition has arisen some questions among interested investors. This article is precisely intended to answer some of those questions:
Which are the benefits of the Law 14/2013?
Any non-resident who acquires a Spanish real estate, whose net value (not considering the encumbrances over the real estate) is higher than €500,000, shall be entitled to apply for:
– a stance visa: which allows non-residents to stay in Spain for a maximum term of 3 months —USA citizens do not require any visa for less than 3 months stays, according to the European Law—;
– a residence visa: which allows non-residents to stay in Spain for a term of 1 year maximum; and
– a residence authorization: which allows non-residents to be in Spain for 2 years maximum (however, obtaining this authorization requires that: (i) the non-resident has a prior residence visa in force or, that has not been expired for a term longer than 90 natural days; and (ii) the non-resident has travelled to Spain at least once during the term authorized to reside in Spain).
Who is the recipient of the above mentioned benefits?
These visas/authorizations shall only be granted in favour of the acquirer of the real estate property in Spain, his/her spouse and, if any, their minor children or their adult children that are not able to maintain themselves for health reasons.
What is application the process?
According to the Spanish Law, the application process should be carried out by the interested individual before the Spanish Consulate placed in his/her country. Therefore, this process shall be developed out of Spain.
Spanish Law provides that Spanish Consulates shall require the applicants to vouch for: (i) the net amount of the investment, which can be proved through the public deed of the real estate’s purchase; (ii) the ownership and encumbrances over the Spanish real estate, that can be confirmed with the corresponding certificate of ownership and encumbrances; (iii) the non-resident has sufficient means of subsistence during his/her stay or residence in Spain; and (iv) the non-resident is not a person for whom an alert has been issued in the Schengen Information System for the purposes of refusing entry.
The requirements described under (iii) and (iv) may be necessary for different documents depending on the Spanish Consulate that processes the application.
Additionally, other documents may be required by the Spanish Consulate that processes the application.
According to the Spanish Law, the resolution approving or denying the applied Visa shall be issued within a term of 10 working days (for visas) or 20 working days (for authorizations) since the date the application was filed before the Spanish Consulate. Notwithstanding, this deadline is generally not attended by the workers of the Consulate, so it is likely that the resolution will take longer.
Is the Foreign Identification Number (“FIN”) required?
In order to acquire a Spanish real estate, a FIN must be applied before a Spanish National Police Station. For that purpose the following documents are required:
An attestation before a Spanish Public Notary of all pages of the non-resident’s passport.
This application can be carried out by a representative on behalf of the non-resident. In this case, a PoA granted in favour of the representative, which shall include the Hague Apostille, must be granted by the non-resident.
How can you acquire a real estate in Spain?
Spanish real estate must only be acquired granting a public deed before a Spanish Notary by the seller and the purchaser, establishing the terms and conditions of the referred transaction.
After the above mentioned public deed has been granted, it must be filed before the corresponding Real Estate Registry. Once it has been filed, a certificate of ownership and encumbrances of the acquired real estate may be issued by the Registry.
How can you pay the real estate property’s price?
The payment of the real estate property’s price shall be carried out by check, bank transfer or any other way (except in cash). However, it should be taken into account that a prior Foreign Investment Declaration before the Spanish authorities shall be done before the purchase of the Spanish real estate property has been paid.
Notwithstanding the above, we must wait for the effective implementation of the Law 14/2013 in order to be able to provide in-depth answers to many other questions, as, for example, the specific documents/information required by the majority of the Spanish Consulates in order to grant the mentioned visa/authorization to reside or stay in Spain.
This article is purely informative and does not substitute an individual advice regarding the acquisition of any visa/authorization to reside or stay in Spain, as the personal circumstances of the applicant shall always be previously considered in order to apply for any of them.
Ignacio Aparicio Ramos
Ignacio Aparicio holds a Law Degree from the University of Valencia. Member of the Valencian Bar Association, he is currently Managing Partner of the Valencia Office of Olleros Abogados, a Spanish Law Firm with a team of more than 80 professionals in its offices of Valencia and Madrid. He is specialized in Commercial Law, in the area of national and international transactions. He is a professor at the Catholic University of Valencia and teaches several Master degrees at different universities and schools such as CEF – UDIMA, Fundación de Estudios Bursátiles y Financieros of Valencia, or the UPV (Cátedra Cultura Empresarial para Emprendedores).