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Embarking on Professional Success in Spain: Your Guide to Highly Qualified Worker Visas

Are you eyeing a career move to Spain? The Highly Qualified Professional Visa, also known as the Spain Skilled Worker Visa, could be your key to legal residence and employment in this vibrant European nation.

Let’s unravel the intricacies of this specialized work permit, designed to welcome non-European Union citizens with exceptional technical or managerial expertise.

Understanding the Spain Skilled Worker Visa: Key Features and Benefits

The visa, created through Law 14/2013, is designed to assist individuals in settling in Spain, providing various advantages. In addition to providing legal residence and work rights in Spain, it enables easy travel within the Schengen Area.

Family reunification is made possible through a joint application, and the years spent under this residency contribute towards eligibility for Spanish nationality.

This visa not only allows you to work in any region of Spain but also offers the convenience of obtaining it within the country, even if you initially enter as a tourist.

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Navigating the Maze: Distinguishing Between Highly Qualified Professional Visa and EU Blue Card

Before you dive in, it’s crucial to differentiate between the Highly Qualified Professional Visa and the EU Blue Card.
While both cater to qualified professionals, the former is exclusive to Spain, providing a specialized Spain Skilled Worker Visa.

On the other hand, the EU Blue Card allows work across EU countries.
Notably, the salary requirements vary significantly, with the Highly Qualified Professional Visa demanding an annual salary exceeding €40,000, while the EU Blue Card necessitates 1 to 1.5 times the average gross annual salary of the relevant EU country.

Visa and Permit: Understanding the Difference

In the realm of immigration, the terms “visa” and “permit” are often used interchangeably, but they carry distinct meanings. A visa is an official authorization that allows you to enter a country, while a permit grants you the right to stay and work within that country.

At, we specialize in demystifying these terms, ensuring our clients understand the nuanced regulations surrounding their stay in Spain.

Embarking on Professional Success: Your Guide to Highly Qualified Worker Visas in Spain

Your journey begins by securing a job offer from a Spanish company. The contracting company or entity must then apply for a permit, allowing you to live and work in Spain.

It’s crucial to note that the law doesn’t explicitly define the term “highly qualified worker.” The determination is based on the criteria of the authority reviewing the application.

Who Does It Apply To?

This visa applies to non-EU individuals with a job offer from a company duly incorporated in Spain, requiring specific skills or qualifications. Qualifications from a university or recognized business school, higher vocational education and training (VET) qualifications, or demonstrable prior experience are acceptable.

Your Current Status Matters: Where and How to Apply

If you are outside Spain, the company wishing to hire you must first apply for the relevant permit online before applying for the national visa in the Embassy to enter Spain. If you are already legally in Spain, the company must directly apply for the relevant permit online.

Requirements for the Visa and Permit: A Dual Perspective

Employee Requirements:

  • You must be legally residing in Spain.
  • You must be at least 18 years old.
  • Clean criminal record in Spain and all the countries you have lived in the previous five years.
  • You must not be banned from entering Spain or listed as inadmissible in countries with visa waiver agreements with Spain.
  • Having a university degree or equivalent or, alternatively, at least three years of comparable professional experience.

Company Requirements:

  • Having a certificate of cover (agreement with the social security system) or health insurance for the employee.
  • Presenting an offer of employment with a description of the position offered, qualifications required, and a salary commensurate with the worker’s level.
  • Paying the fee for processing the permit.

Duration and Family Reunification: A Closer Look

The Highly Qualified Professional residence permit is valid for three years. Family members, including spouses, unmarried partners, children below legal age, and first-degree dependent relatives, can accompany you.

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Navigating the Application Process: Step-by-Step Guide

1 The company applies for the permit:

The employer initiates the process for the residence and work permit for the highly qualified professional at the Large Companies and Strategic Collectives Unit (UGE-CE) in Spain.

2 Receive notification of the decision:

The company is notified of the permit status via the email address provided during the application submission.

3 Apply for the visa:

If you are outside Spain, once your residence permit has been approved, you must apply for a visa at the Spanish embassy or consulate in your place of residence to enter Spain.

4 Entry into Spain:

Upon arrival, additional formalities will be required, such as going to the Spanish police station by previous appointment to register your fingerprints and obtain the residence card (TIE).

Documenting Your Journey: What You Need to Know

Documentation is a critical aspect, and both employees and companies need to provide specific documents to ensure a smooth process.

Certain documents must first be legalised through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the country issuing the document or by means of the Hague Apostille stamp.

All documents must subsequently be translated into Spanish by a sworn translator recognised by the Spanish Government.

Cost and Timeline: Managing Expectations

The visa fee is subject to variations depending on the Spanish Consulate or Embassy you attend, and the application permit fee is 73.26 euros.

The decision on the permit takes a maximum of twenty working days and, once obtained, the visa is issued within ten working days.


Your Dedicated Resources: Spanish Government and Expert Guidance

The responsible bodies for these processes are the Spanish Ministry of Foreign Affairs (for the visa) and the Large Companies and Strategic Groups Unit (UGE-CE) for the permit.

For more information, refer to the Government of Spain’s Immigration Portal, the Invest in Spain website, and the information sheet on highly qualified professionals in Spain.

In conclusion, is your dedicated ally, committed to ensuring a smooth and successful journey through the intricacies of the Visa for Highly Qualified Workers in Spain. Contact us today to embark on a path that goes beyond legal residency, guiding you toward a thriving professional future in Spain. Your success is our priority, and we are here to support you every step of the way.

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