Are you planning to work remotely from Spain? Then you should understand the key points of the new visa for digital nomads that has been approved and that is intended for foreigners like you who want to telework from Spanish territory.
Concerning the increase in international telecommuting
In a world marked by an increasingly globalized economy and a growing weight of technological companies and international telecommuting, attracting talent and investment through the creation of legal scenarios designed for entrepreneurs and digital nomads is becoming increasingly important.
Taking into account this situation and based on current trends in international worker mobility, a new visa has been created in Spain for job profiles that are increasingly found in our country: digital nomads.
We are talking about a new visa that has been introduced by the so-called “Startups Law” [Ley de Startups] and that since entering into force (December 23, 2022) is regulated within the Entrepreneurs Law [Ley de Emprendedores].
Application for the visa for digital nomads in Spain
Who can apply for this new permit/visa to telework from Spain? All non-EU citizens (from outside the European Union) who are carrying out:
- Either a work activity as an employee being hired by a company.
- Or a self-employed activity.
* Different specificities must be addressed depending on whether it is a work activity or a self-employed activity.
In general, these people must carry out work or self-employed activity through the use of computer, telematic, and telecommunication means and systems for companies that are outside Spain.
1. The teleworker has a contract and carries out a work activity
In the case of carrying out a work activity, the holder of the permit for international telework can only telework for companies that are outside Spain (that is, this person cannot telework for companies that are in our country).
2. The teleworker undertakes self-employed activity
If, on the other hand, the concerned party undertakes self-employed activity, the law allows the holder of the permit for international teleworking to work both for companies located outside Spain and for companies located in Spanish territory. In this latter case, the percentage of work should not exceed 20% of the total of their self-employed activity.
What profile should the applicant for this type of visa have?
Taking into account the different scenarios explained above, it is important to emphasize that the Law indicates that qualified professionals can apply for this visa or permit for teleworking in Spain if they prove that:
- they are graduates or postgraduates of universities, vocational training and business schools
- they have, where appropriate, professional experience of at least three years.
Requirements for applying for the visa for digital nomads in Spain
In addition to the general requirements for stay or residence contained in the Entrepreneurs Law, the following specific requirements must be met in order to apply for the visa for digital nomads in Spain:
- Proof of a real and continuous activity for at least one year in the company or group of companies with which the worker maintains an employment relationship (employed worker) or one year as a self-employed person.
- The concerned party must have the corresponding documentation that certifies that the employment or self-employed relationship can be carried out as teleworking.
Requirements for employed workers
In the case of employed workers, in addition to having to meet all the above requirements, the applicant must:
- prove that the employment relationship between them and the company not located in Spain has existed for at least the last three months prior to the submission of the application;
- compile documentation proving that said company allows the worker to carry out the work activity remotely.
Requirements for self-employed persons
In the case of self-employed persons, in addition to having to meet all the above requirements, the applicant must:
- prove that they have a commercial relationship with one or more companies not located in Spain for at least the last three months;
- collect and deliver documentation proving the terms and conditions in which they will remotely exercise their self-employed activity.
Where do I apply for a visa for working remotely in Spain?
It depends on whether the concerned party is outside or inside Spain at the time of the application: foreign persons not resident in Spain must apply for the visa for international telework, while those foreign persons who are in Spain can apply for the residence permit for international telework.
First scenario: non-resident foreign persons in Spain (visa)
Non-resident foreign persons in Spanish territory who want to reside in Spain with the aim of teleworking for a company not located in Spain must apply for the visa for international telework, which will have a maximum validity of one year (unless the working period is shorter).
With this visa, teleworkers can reside and telework in Spain for at least one year.
What happens to international teleworkers who want to continue residing and teleworking from Spain?
In this case, in the 60 calendar days before the expiration of the visa, those interested in continuing to reside in Spain can apply for a residence permit for international teleworkers (that is as long as the conditions that generated the right are met).
Second scenario: foreign persons who are in Spain (permit)
Foreign persons who are already registered in Spain or who have entered using the visa mentioned above can directly apply for a residence permit in order to telework for a company located abroad.
This permit is valid for a maximum of three years, unless it is requested for a shorter period.
In addition, a renewal can be requested for periods of two years as long as the conditions that originated the right continue to be met.
Tax advantages provided by the digital nomad visa
With regard to tax it is important to highlight that, after the official publication of the Startups Law, digital nomads can benefit from the special tax scheme applicable to immigrants to Spain (popularly known as the “Beckham Law”), undoubtedly an advantageous tax mechanism that allows the optimization and saving of taxes when paying Income Tax for Non-Residents.
We have another post in which we talk extensively about this scheme: Special tax scheme applicable to persons posted in Spanish territory.
Finally, it is important to note that the UGE will issue instructions that will detail and expand information on the visa for digital nomads in Spain, so it will be necessary to pay special attention to what is indicated in them.
Do you want a visa for digital nomads in Spain?
GD Global Mobility has teams of experts in international worker mobility.
Among the services related to the visa for digital nomads, we can help you with matters such as:
- Preparation of the file and support with the drafting of documents.
- Digital Nomad Visa application using electronic submission.
- Help with the different procedures.
- Tax review.
Would you like to receive personalized advice?
Contact our professionals for more information; they will be at your disposal to guide you throughout the process.