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SPAIN – Higher Risk of Denial of Residence Authorisation Application

, 20/02/2017

The Spanish authorities are currently adopting much more restrictive criteria to decide applications for residence permits for Highly Qualified Employees under the “Entrepreneurs’ Act” (Ley 14/2013).

Strict Qualifying Criteria

There is at present a higher risk of denial of such applications if the following qualifying criteria are not fully met:

  • The job position offered must require high qualifications – the position listed in the employment contract must correspond with a position listed in Spain's "Catalogo Nacional de Ocupaciones" (CNO) group 1 or 2;
  • The gross annual salary must be at least €30,000;
  • The employee must be highly qualified in an occupation relevant to the job position – a graduate or postgraduate or, exceptionally, someone with a similar background acquired through experience.

Action Items

  • Employers hiring highly skilled foreign nationals in Spain under the Entrepreneurs’ Act should ensure the employee and the job position fully meet the criteria for “highly qualified” residence authorisation.