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Highly Qualified Professionals in Spain

Highly qualified professionals Spain

Did you know that there is a work permit for highly qualified professionals? This is an authorization that allows non-European Union workers to reside and work in Spain for an initial period of two years (with the possibility of an extension).

Of course, for the permit application to be approved, both the worker and the company must meet a series of requirements.

In this post we will focus on the nature and concept of "Highly Qualified Professional", a migratory legal figure that appears in Law 14/2013, of September 27, to support entrepreneurs and their internationalization.

What is a Highly Qualified Professional?

In general, a highly qualified professional is:

  • that worker who performs their work activity in a qualified/technical position that requires advanced knowledge;
  • an executive or a manager in charge of a team of workers.

To be considered a highly qualified professional, the worker must have very specific training and have previous work experience according to their job position.

However, it is also possible to be considered as such if you do not have a university degree as long as you can prove extensive work experience in the sector carrying out tasks similar to those that will be carried out in the hiring company.

In other words, in order to be considered a highly qualified professional, both training and worker experience are taken into account, and it always depends on the job position, either as a technician or as a manager.

Company profile

As established by the Entrepreneurs Law, companies that require the incorporation of this type of profile in Spanish territory can request residence authorization for highly qualified professionals. Of course, the employment or professional relationship must be one of these cases:

1 – Management or highly qualified professional*, when the company or group of companies meets any of the following characteristics:

  • Average workforce during the three months immediately prior to submitting the application greater than 250 workers in Spain.
  • Volume of annual net turnover of more than €50 million in Spain.
  • Average annual gross investment, from abroad, not less than €1 million in the three years immediately prior to submitting the application.
  • Companies with a value of investment stock or position according to the latest data from the Foreign Investment Registry of the Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness greater than €3 million.
  • In the case of small and medium-sized companies established in Spain, if they belong to a sector considered strategic (renewable energy, technology, etc.). This membership of said strategic sector must be accredited by the General Directorate of International Trade and Investments.

* Being a director or manager is not an essential requirement for being considered a highly qualified professional. Professionals who perform highly skilled, specific, technical, or specialized tasks could also be considered highly qualified professionals.

2 – In addition, managerial or highly qualified professionals who form part of a business project of general interest also fall within this situation. This implies that the entity permanently generates employment, that its activity helps the technological and innovative development of the country, or that it makes a relevant contribution to scientific innovation, etc.

3 – Graduates and postgraduates from prestigious universities and business schools.

As we have seen throughout the post, the legal figure of the highly qualified worker is not governed by a common rule, but the consideration as such depends on each job and the professional situation of each worker (training, experience, characteristics of the new job, salary that the worker will receive, etc.).

For this reason, it is advisable to analyze each specific case and take into account the situation of both the professional and the company if we want the Large Companies Unit (the entity that processes work permits for highly qualified professionals) to approve the application for the work permit for this legal figure.

Our GD Global Mobility team can help you with the management of this permit. Visit this page for more information: Highly Qualified Professionals

Highly Qualified Professionals in Spain

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