Obtain a Work Permit in Spain

Obtain a Work Permit in Spain

Updated on Monday 18th April 2016

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Work permit in SpainCertain categories of foreign citizens need a work permit in order to become employees of a local company in Spain and most of them should settle a job arrangement before applying for a work permit. There is no requirement for a work permit for foreign citizens coming from EU, EEA or Switzerland, except Croatia, whose citizens need a permit until 2020. This document is necessary for most of the foreigners living outside EU, except scientists, university teachers, academics, journalists, volunteers (no matter the field of activity) etc. all around the world who come to Spain in order to work for projects and who can bring also their family members.

Get a job before obtaining a work permit


The foreign citizens who want to obtain a work permit in Spain must first get a job in this country and then, the first step to follow is to request this document. The employer is entitled to do this, if certain conditions are met, such as the advertising of the job in order to find a suitable candidate in Spain or in EU with negative results. The foreigners will also need a residence permit and a visa in order to come to Spain.

The employer must submit an application for the work permit to the local office of the Ministry of Labor on behalf of the future employee. The copy of the application should be sent to the Spanish embassy or consulate for obtaining a residence and work visa. After that, the applicant will have to wait a few months until he obtains a work permit for Spain. The work and residence visa will be issued all together and the work permit will be valid for one year and it can be renewed as long as the foreigners will continue to work in Spain.

EU Blue Card for highly qualified workers

The foreign citizens who are highly qualified (have a bachelor’s degree or other diploma that proves a qualification obtained in minimum three years of study or have worked for minimum five years at a high level) can apply for EU blue card. Other conditions are to have a work contract or a job offer in Spain and a salary of minimum 1.5 times higher than the average wage in Spain. The EU Blue Card is valid for one year and it can be renewed, if you meet the conditions.

For more details about how you can obtain a work permit or a EU Blue Card, you may contact our law firm in Spain.