Solicitor Raymond Nesbitt gives us an overview of the advantages offered by Spain’s Golden Visa scheme to UK nationals.
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By Raymundo Larraín Nesbitt
Director of Larraín Nesbitt Lawyers
21st of January 2021
The Spanish Golden Visa has become the gateway to Europe for thousands of applicants pursuing the European dream. They have collectively invested over 2 billion euros since its inception in 2013. Although Spain’s visa programme was initially a flop, as it fell well below expectations, and was marred with teething issues, an ambitious overhaul in 2015 made it extremely competitive compared with similar schemes offered by fellow EU countries. So much so, that this massive tweak enabled Spain to confidently overtake Portugal, becoming Europe´s leading Golden Visa supplier.
Although this procedure was originally devised to cater to affluent Russian, Chinese, and Iranian nationals, in a post-Brexit world, UK nationals now have a golden opportunity (excuse the pun) to benefit from the wide array of advantages offered by Spain’s Golden Visa scheme.
With the European Union’s Parliament official confirmation from last week that it will ratify belatedly the Withdrawal Agreement in February 2021, Brexit is now truly done and dusted. This opens the doors for Britons to apply for a GV application. Although Brexit has been a protracted procedure, as a positive note, it has allowed the prospect of Golden Visas for British nationals.
UK nationals may now enjoy - for the first time ever - the slew of advantages that were until now reserved only to a select minority of wealthy non-EUs. The main advantage is that it allows British nationals - that lack a EU passport - to enter and move visa-free through the Schengen Area, skipping pesky passport controls on an equal footing to EU nationals. Much like before the UK voted to break away from the Union.
If you fancy an in-depth take into this subject, you can take a peek at our 2013 article: Investor Guide to Spain’s Golden Visa Law.
Spain’s Golden Visa programme allows affluent non-EU applicants, and their dependants, unfettered access across Europe´s Schengen Area. Travel unmolested through all of Europe.
A Golden Visa enables you, and your family, to live and work in Spain (Europe). This visa guarantees Spanish residency, which eventually leads to Spanish citizenship (optional). Live the dream, apply now!
Thousands of non-EU nationals have already secured their families’ future and well-being on benefiting from this special arrangement that rolls out the red carpet cutting through all the red tape. Spain’s Golden Visa is a success story, be a part of it!
At Larrain Nesbitt Abogados, we have assisted hundreds of investors, and their families, to attain a GV since its inception in 2013. We can put you in touch with the most reputable real estate agencies across Spain to make your dreams come true. Apply for the keys to your Golden Visa through Larraín Nesbitt Abogados: Golden Visa Service. Your family’s success is only one call away: (+34) 952 19 22 88.
Applicants pursuing investor visas must comply with the following general requirements:
Qualified residency permits to non-EU residents will be offered in return for any of the following:
1. Can I request a mortgage on investing €500,000 in Spanish real estate?
Only on the excess above €500,000. The law requires that the first €500,000 is unencumbered – meaning the equity threshold must be free. The excess can indeed be financed through a mortgage loan if necessary. Notwithstanding the above, you may also finance the 500k using a lender, as long as he is located outside of the Union, although this may prove challenging in practice.
2. I have read that I need to spend over six months in Spain to qualify for residency. Is this true?
No. A GV neatly overrides this requirement. This law specifically targets affluent individuals who will normally be residing and working elsewhere. That doesn’t preclude the investor’s spouse and children from living and studying (or even working) in Spain (Europe). In other words, you are free to come and go as you please without needing to stay in Spain a minimum period of time every year.
3. I don’t fancy paying taxes in Spain, I already pay enough in my home country. Will I become a Spanish tax resident if I apply for a GV?
No, you won’t. A GV application is unrelated to your tax residency. Only if you spend more than 183 days a year in Spanish territory would you become a Spanish tax resident. Ideal for those who want their families to enjoy a European lifestyle whilst the main investor commutes to work in other countries and has his/her main business outside of Europe.
4. How long does it take to attain a GV application?
Under two months, on average.
5. Can I work in Spain?
Yes. Following a change in the GV law in 2015, the main investor may now work in Spain.
6. Can I make use of the public healthcare system?
No. This blue-ribbon visa targets wealthy non-residents who must hire their own private insurance. We can also assist you with this: Hiring private health insurance.
7. Does a GV include also the investor’s family?
Yes, even extended family. The term ‘family’ must be understood broadly. A married couple and their children under 18 are included under the same application as a family unit. Same-sex partners qualify as a married couple. In some cases, children over 18 y.o. are also included as long as they are financially dependent. Also, dependant parents, even if under 65 y.o.
8. How long does the Golden Visa last for?
Two years, and you may renew it for a further 5 years.
9. Do holders of the so-called Golden Visa have unrestricted access to move within the European Union?
In a nutshell, yes. Holders of a Spanish Golden Visa do not require a visa to enter Europe’s Schengen Area. They can transit and enjoy free movement within the Schengen Area visa-free for a maximum period of three months (90 days) in every rolling six-month period from the date of first entry. You will have unfettered access to move within the Union.
10. Can I invest in real estate through a company?
Yes, but certain criteria apply to qualify - talk to us. The bottom line is that you can indeed buy real estate through companies and still qualify to attain a GV in Spain.
Interested? Come and speak to Larraín Nesbitt Abogados friendly staff who will be pleased to guide you through Spain’s Golden Visa programme. Your family’s success is only one call away: (+34) 952 19 22 88.
“Democracy owes its existence to Christianity.” – Robert Schuman
Jean-Baptiste Nicolas Robert Schuman (1886 – 1963). Was a French statesman. Schuman was a Christian Democrat (Popular Republican Movement) political thinker and activist. Twice Prime Minister of France, a reformist Minister of Finance and a Foreign Minister, he was instrumental in building postwar European and trans-Atlantic institutions and was one of eleven Founding Fathers of the European Union, the Council of Europe, and NATO.
In fact, all Founding Fathers of the Union were Christian, which explains the thoughtful choice of Rome - Christianity's bedrock - to sign in 1957 the EEC’s foundational treaty, a forerunner of what in time would be known to us as the European Union, or Union. I’m guessing Pericles would like to have a word or two on this quote.
Larraín Nesbitt Lawyers, small on fees, big on service.
Larraín Nesbitt Lawyers is a law firm specialized in conveyancing, residency, inheritance, taxation and litigation. You can contact us by e-mail at email@example.com, by completing our contact form or by telephone on (+34) 952 19 22 88.
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Article originally published at Spanish Property Insight: Spanish Golden Visa for British investors after Brexit
Please note the information provided in this article is of general interest only and is not to be construed or intended as substitute for professional legal advice. This article may be posted freely in websites or other social media so long as the author is duly credited. Plagiarizing, whether in whole or in part, this article without crediting the author may result in criminal prosecution. Voluntas omnia vincit.
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