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Tips to get a work permit in Spain

Spain has become the top priority for many foreigners who are looking to start their new life abroad. The country offers the perfect set of conditions that make it the ideal spot to set up your new company, retire or finish your studies.

Among the most common reasons that motivate those foreigners to embark on this new journey, finding a job and starting to work is perhaps the main one.

And that, of course, requires obtaining a valid work permit not only to live in the country for the desired duration of their new life chapter, but also to legally work.

Many doubts and headaches are generated when willing to apply for a work visa in Spain, but the following tips will really help you navigate this process easily. 

First: understand your options 

There are many ways to obtain the legal right to work in Spain.

That is, the Spanish immigration law offers several residencies for foreigners (each with its own peculiarities), and according to your personal situation and plans in the country you will choose or another.

That is why understanding your options is key.

Which are the residence permits that allow you to work in Spain?

  • First of all, we find a regular work permit. This is perhaps the most complicated path to legally working in Spain as the national situation of unemployment must be respected before granting any application.
  • Then, there is the work permit as a highly skilled professional. If you work as a director or managing people and earn over 50.000€ per year, this is for sure your go-to option.
  • If you are willing to create your own company, you consider your project to be really innovative and it involves many technological procedures, then the entrepreneur visa would be the ideal option.
  • If you will provide your services as a freelancer, then the “autónomo visa” or work permit as an employee is the right choice, even though it requires a business plan.
  • But there are other residencies that indirectly also allow you to work in the country, like the golden visa or the visa as a family member of an EU citizen

As you can see, there are many options, and it may be complicated to fully understand which one is best for your particular situation. That is why the next tip will really help you out.

Seek expert assistance before starting your application

Hiring an immigration lawyer to help you out throughout the whole process really pays off.

And you don’t even need to hire them to manage the whole application (which in fact would save you time and guarantee a successful result), but just a 30 or 60 minute consultation in which you can explain your situation and let them define the best path for you to follow can help more than what you think.

Otherwise, you incur the risk of wasting time preparing documents that will end up getting rejected, and many times money along the way.

Be careful with travelling to Spain before submitting your file

Many foreigners decide to first travel to Spain to then get their legal situation sorted out there.

This may be a really expensive mistake, especially because the vast majority of residence permits (and hence working visas) can’t be applied while being a tourist: you must submit your application from your country of origin.

That is true except those visas under the entrepreneur’s law: like the highly qualified visa, the entrepreneur visa or even the internship residency.

Finding a job is first

Without a job, there is no legal procedure possible.

That is why perhaps one of the most complicated parts of the process will be finding a company willing to hire you.

Nevertheless, luckily nowadays the internet makes it pretty easy to encounter new opportunities.

There are many online platforms that include job postings for foreigners, like Linkedin, Indeed or Glassdor.

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