Application for residence and work as an employee in Spain

portada solicitud residencia trabajo por cuenta ajena en españa

Residence and work visas The holder is entitled to reside and work in Spain. There are different types of residence and work visas, but today we are going to analyze the residence and work visa for employees, which can allow you (if you are over 16 years old) to reside temporarily in Spain for a period of more than 90 days and to exercise a lucrative activity, work or professional, on behalf of others. #1

The employer must have previously obtained a residence and work permit from the competent Government Delegation/Subdelegation or, if applicable, from the competent body. #2

What are the requirements?

  1. Not be a citizen of a European Union state, nor of the European Economic Area or Switzerland, or a family member of citizens of these countries to which the Union citizen regime applies.
  2. Not to be irregularly in Spanish territory.
  3. Not have a criminal record in Spain and in their previous countries of residence for offenses under Spanish criminal law.
  4. Not to be prohibited from entering Spain.
  5. Not being, if applicable, within the period of commitment not to return to Spain that has been assumed when returning voluntarily to their country of origin.
  6. Pay the fees for the processing of the residence and employment authorization. (which are around 200 euros, but this value varies according to the specific case).
  7. That the national employment situation allows for recruitment. It allows it if any of the following are met:
    1. The occupation to be performed by the worker in the company is included in the catalog of difficult to fill occupations published quarterly by the State Public Employment Service.
    2. The competent Aliens Office considers that it has not been possible to fill the job on the basis of the certificate issued by the Public Employment Service on the management of the job offer.
    3. The authorization is intended for nationals of States with which Spain has signed international agreements.
    4. When you are in any of the cases of non-consideration of the national employment situation, included in Article 40 of the Law on the rights and freedoms of foreigners in Spain and their social integration, Organic Law 4/2000(#3), these cases are:
  • Regrouped family members of working age, or the child or spouse of a foreigner residing in Spain, as well as the children of a nationalized Spaniard or of citizens of other member states of the European Union and other states that are part of the European Economic Area, only when they have at least one year of legal residence in Spain and the child does not fall under the Community regime (This consists of a specific immigration regime and, therefore, also of visas, which is more beneficial than the ordinary one).
  • Holders of a previous work authorization who are seeking renewal.
  • Workers required for the renovation of a facility or production equipment.
  • Those who have enjoyed refugee status during the year following the cessation of the application of the Geneva Convention of 28 July 1951.
  • Those recognized as stateless
  • Foreigners who have dependent ascendants or descendants who are Spanish nationals.
  • Foreigners born and residing in Spain.
  • Children or grandchildren of native Spaniards.
  • Foreign minors between 16 and 18 years of age with a residence permit who are under the guardianship of the competent entity for the protection of minors and once the impossibility of returning to their family or to their country of origin has been accredited.
  • Foreigners who obtain a residence permit for exceptional circumstances in the cases determined by regulations and, in any case, when they are victims of gender violence or human trafficking.
  • Foreigners who have had work authorizations for seasonal activities for two years and have returned to their country.
  • Foreigners who have renounced their residence and work authorization under a voluntary return program.
  • It is for positions of trust and company executives.
  • Highly qualified professionals, such as technicians or scientists hired by public entities and universities.
  • Employees of a company in another country who seek to work for the same company in Spain.
  • Artists #4
  1. Present a contract signed by the employer and worker that guarantees the work while holding the work and residence permit.
  2. The conditions set forth in the contract must be in accordance with Spanish law.
  3. The applicant employer must be registered in the Social Security system.
  4. The employer must have sufficient financial means to meet its obligations to the employee.
  5. Possess the training and education required for the practice of the profession.

What documents do I need?

  • First, the completed application form, duplicated and signed by the company.

Worker’s documentation: (initial documentation required)

  • Copy of passport.
  • Copy of the documentation proving the legally required training for the work to be performed (e.g. university diploma, high school diploma).

Company documentation (except for domestic service) or documentation identifying the company requesting authorization:

  • In the case of an entrepreneur who is a natural person: copy of the NIF (Tax ID number) or
  • In the case of a legal entity
    • Copy of the company’s Tax ID number and copy of the duly registered articles of incorporation.
    • Copy of the public document certifying that the person signing is the legal representative of the company.
    • Copy of the NIF or NIE or consent to verify the identity data through the Identity and Residence Data Verification System of the signatory of the application.
  • Signed employment contract (original and copy). The copy will be stamped by the Aliens Office and returned for subsequent presentation by the foreigner together with the application for a residence and work visa.
  • Documentation evidencing that you fall within the national employment status disregards discussed above. (in case of alleging such assumptions).
  • Accreditation that the company can guarantee the necessary solvency, through: copy of the IRPF, or VAT, or Corporate Tax return or the company’s work life report (VILE), referring to the last three years. In addition to a description of the tasks to be performed by the employee.

How is the procedure performed?

  1. The person who initiates the process is the employer or entrepreneur personally, or through the legal representative of the company.
  2. This procedure must be submitted to the immigration office of the province where the work is to be performed. If the company has work centers in more than one province and more than 500 workers, it is carried out at the Large Companies Unit of the General Directorate of Immigration.
  3. The following are the residence and work fees, which must be paid within ten working days from the moment the application is admitted for processing. (see rates in the following link and remember that these rates increase according to the year).
  4. The deadline for resolving the application is 3 months. Once this period has elapsed without a response from the Administration, the same shall be understood as denied.
  5. In case the application is resolved favorably, the worker has one month from the notification to the employer, to apply personally for the visa in the diplomatic mission or consular office (it will resolve the application within a period of one month) in whose demarcation he/she resides, this application requires:
  • Passport with a minimum validity of four months.
  • Criminal record certificate issued by the authorities of the country of origin or the country in which he/she has resided during the last five years.
  • Medical certificate.
  • Copy of the contract presented and stamped by the Immigration Office.
  • Proof of payment of the visa fee, which amounts to 60 euros.
  1. once the visa has been granted, the worker must receive it within one month of being notified.
  2. The worker must enter Spain during the three months of validity of the visa, which entitles him/her to enter and remain in Spain for the duration of the stay while he/she is affiliated to the corresponding social security system.
  3. You must then apply in person for the Alien’s Identity Card at the Alien’s Office or Police Station in the province where the authorization has been processed. To see where to go, the hours and if you have to make an appointment, you will be able to consult:
  • At the time of the imprinting process, the applicant shall show his/her passport or travel document and shall provide:
    • Proof of payment of the card fee.
    • Proof of affiliation and/or registration with the Social Security.
    • Three recent color photographs, white background, passport size.

For this application it is advisable to seek proper advice from a lawyer with knowledge of immigration law and Spanish.



#1. Colombian Immigrant’s Guide to Madrid:

#2. Immigration portal in Spain:

#3. Organic Law 4/2000, of January 11, 2000, on the Rights and Freedoms of Foreigners in Spain and their Social Integration (Articles 36, 38 and 40). Link:

#4. Regulation of Organic Law 4/2000, approved by Royal Decree 557/2011, of April 20 (articles 62 to 70). Link: