Ways to obtain Spanish citizenship
Situated on the Mediterranean coast, Spain is associated with an enjoyable and relaxed lifestyle for many immigrants. The country offers sunny beaches, a mild climate and plenty of opportunities to enjoy outdoor activities. However, Spanish citizenship is attractive due to more substantial reasons. This country has a strong economy, high quality of life and great employment, business and educational opportunities.
Most significantly, a Spanish passport offers all the benefits of EU citizenship. That means receiving these benefits after immigrating there:
- Visa-free travel to 159 countries worldwide (as of November 2023);
- Freedom to live, work and study in European Union member states;
- Access to EU market, simplified business registration procedures;
- Social benefits, political and legal protection throughout European countries;
- Diplomatic and consular support around the world.
How to obtain the citizenship of Spain?
Spanish citizenship is obtained through legal immigration programs regulated by national legislation. All 4 ways to acquire a passport of this country are described below.
Naturalization program: a person must have lived in Spain at least 10 years, have no criminal record and pass language and history tests to obtain citizenship. Simplified procedures for getting a passport in 5 years or less are available to refugees, nationals of Ibero-American countries and stateless persons.
Descent program: an individual is eligible for passport application if they have at least one parent who is a Spanish citizen, regardless of their place of birth. Adoption by nationals of this country, or having foreign parents who were born there, also leads to citizenship.
Marriage program: this method requires living in the state with a Spanish national partner for at least one year from the date the residence permit was issued. The application involves proving a stable marriage, completing additional tests and meeting certain immigration requirements.
Option program: this process allows certain people to qualify for Spanish citizenship, such as Sephardic Jews who can prove their ties to the community and pass a language and culture test. Children or grandchildren of a national of that country can also get an ID card through that program.
List of documents for obtaining citizenship in Spain
In order to obtain Spanish citizenship, various documents must be submitted as part of the application process. The specific paperwork required may vary depending on the circumstances, including the basis of immigration (naturalization, marriage etc.). Below are listed the general documents needed to obtain Spanish citizenship:
- Valid passport or national ID card;
- Birth and marriage status certificates;
- Proof of legal residence (TRP, PRP, visa);
- Certificate of no criminal record;
- Bank statements or evidence of financial stability;
- Certificates of passing Spanish language and culture exams;
- Proof of payment of application fee;
- Other supporting documents as specified by the basis of the citizenship application.
With all the benefits of European citizenship and clear routes to gaining a passport, Spain is a popular destination for relocation. However, it is advisable to consult a competent lawyer before moving there. Determining the best immigration plan, assistance in understanding Spanish laws and procedures regarding settling under the chosen program can smooth the immigration process and ensure a successful outcome.