How to Be a Spanish Citizen: A Step-by-Step Guide

Learn how to become a Spanish citizen! Spain is one of Europe’s leading countries and offers great living standards and high quality of life. If you are interested in becoming a citizen, follow our step-by-step guide on how to become one. Click here to read more!

How to Be a Spanish Citizen: A Step-by-Step Guide

If you’re eligible to become a Spanish citizen, you should definitely take the plunge. Not only will you get to live in the beautiful country of Spain, but you’ll also have all the rights that come with being a Spanish citizen. In order to become a Spanish citizen, you must be able to prove your connection to Spain and meet certain residency requirements by submitting an application package that includes the required documents, some of which are listed below.

Should you choose permanent residency or citizenship?

Holding an EU long-term permanent residence permit allows you to stay on as a resident in Spain while retaining your own nationality and passport. As a Spanish permanent resident, you can enjoy most of the same benefits as Spanish citizens. You must, however, be able to fulfill certain conditions. This includes being able to support yourself financially. You can move around the EU for limited periods and longer with permission.

If you become a Spanish citizen, however, you will need to give up your original nationality and passport, unless you qualify for an exemption (see below). You will enjoy all the same rights as other Spanish citizens. In addition, you will become a citizen of the EU, meaning you are free to move around within it. You can also vote in European elections

The following are the basic steps to step you can take in other to become a Spain citizen. we have made some research and also based on personal experience I was able to the steps you can follow to achieve your aim to become a citizen of this country. However, you can read below for all you need to know able the programs.

(Step one)  Requirements and types of Visa 

In this post, we are going to discuss the major types of visas for those who wish to get a Spanish Visa, Meanwhile, there are two main citizenship programs for Spanish citizens.

The first one is called Spanish Citizenship by Descent, which you will qualify for if your parent or grandparent was born in Spain before 2005.

The second way is by Residence and Marriage, where you can apply if you have been married to a Spanish citizen for at least three years. In both cases, there are requirements that need to be met and steps that need to be followed in order to get citizenship. We’ll go over these requirements and the steps below. If you have any questions about citizenship programs for Spanish.

Now that we know what it takes to become a Spanish citizen, let’s start talking about each of these steps in detail. Below we’ve divided them into 5 different sections: 1) Requirements; 2) Documents; 3) Time Frame; 4) Fees; 5) Interview Process
To keep things simple, we broke down each step into individual subsections so you can easily follow along as we walk through all of them together.
You will find below some general information about citizenship programs for Spanish, followed by a more detailed explanation of each subsection mentioned above. We’ll start with requirements and move on to documents (i.e., paperwork), time frame (i.e., how long it takes), fees (how much it costs), and the final interview process (the last step before receiving your certificate).
However, there are still other ways one can also get a Spanish visa which is by investment is also known as 

Spain Golden Visa – Invest in Spain and Get the Residence Permit

The Golden Visa for Spain is a residence visa issued to a non-EU national who intends to make a significant investment in the Spanish economy. The visa offers the holder and their family members residency in Spain and visa-free access to the Schengen Zone.

In most cases, Spain's Golden Visas are issued to someone who purchases real estate. However, they are also available to businessmen who invest in a Spanish company, which is why they are referred to as Spain Investor Visas as well.

Who can get a Golden Visa for Span?

To be eligible for a Spanish Golden Visa, you must make one of the following investments:

Purchase real estate in Spain worth at least €500,000. The real estate can be one single unit or several, with an overall worth of no less than €500,000.
Make an investment in the Spanish public debt of at least €2,000,000.

Buy shares in a company or make a deposit in a Spanish bank of at least €1,000,000.
Invest in a new business that will offer employment opportunities, contribute to scientific and/or technological innovation and have a relevant socio-economic impact in the area where the business will be undertaken.
In addition to the investment, you must also fulfill the following requirements:

  • You must be of legal age (+18 years old).
  • You must have no history of criminal records.
  • You must not have been refused a Schengen Visa in the past.
  • You must have health insurance in Spain.

Because the investment is so substantial and risky, most potential applicants consult with professionals in the field of investment immigration to determine eligibility. La Vida is a consultancy and assistance company, experienced in immigration law, real estate, and international investment. Their range of experts can guide you through your options and even help you apply for the Spanish Golden Visa.

Another type of Visa is on can apply for is the Origin or Birth Spanish Citizenship, this is one of the best ways to become a Spanish citizen.

Origin of birth Spanish citizenship

You are Spanish by origin and can apply for Spanish citizenship by ‘Option’ (where you do not require a residency period) if you were:

  • Born to a Spanish mother or father.
  • Born in Spain to foreign parents.

If at least one parent was also born in Spain. The exception is children of diplomats and consuls accredited in Spain;
Were adopted by a Spaniard and are under 18, or are over 18 and were adopted within the last two years;
Were born in Spain to foreign parents whose identity is unknown or their country of origin is undetermined (stateless or refugee status). This also applies if neither parents’ nationality could be legally passed on to you.

There are also other situations to qualify for Spanish citizenship, where residency is required for one year. This applies to those born outside Spain to parents (also born outside Spain) and grandparents, who were originally Spanish.

It also applies to those with a Spanish guardian or foster parent. Those who did not duly exercise their right to acquire Spanish nationality by option are also required to have a year.

(Step Two) Documentation.

Before applying for citizenship, you’ll need documents to prove your residency and identity. In some cases, foreign residents also need documents that confirm their good character. You’ll want to start gathering these documents as soon as possible.

Most countries ask for different types of documentation depending on whether you are married or unmarried and whether you have children. Check with your country’s consulate or embassy website to see what is required in your case.

(Step Three) Procedure 

Once you've become a resident of Spain, you'll need to do several things in order to be eligible for citizenship. First, you'll need to request an NIE, or number of identification. Second, you must formally apply for residence at your local court; in many cases, this requires an interview and several other legal procedures. Finally, once these steps have been completed and your residency has passed two years (with no violations), it is time for naturalization.

(Step Four) The NIE Number

In order to apply for citizenship, you must have your NIE (Número de Identificación de Extranjero) number. The easiest way is to go online and make an appointment in one of their offices. If you choose not to do it online and want a physical copy, you can go directly to their office. It’s important that your application has all of your documents included in it so it doesn’t get rejected in any way when going through review.

(Step Five) Completing The Application

You’ll apply for citizenship by filling out an application form and filing it with Spain’s central authority. The process generally takes six months, though any major changes in your life moving, getting married, or having children can alter that timeline. Unlike some other countries, Spain doesn’t require you to renounce your citizenship of origin, but if you want dual citizenship you must follow special procedures.

If you have questions about how to be a Spanish citizen, ask them ahead of time so you can plan accordingly. And don’t forget to check whether there are any fees associated with becoming a citizen.

(Step Six) Documents required (including birth certificate, police record, proof of residence, etc.)

In order to be recognized as an official citizen of Spain, you must provide your original birth certificate. If you are married, you will also need your marriage certificate.

Furthermore, you must provide proof of residence in Spain for three years prior to application. For example, if you purchased your home six years ago but have rented it out during that time, then submitted proof of rent payments will satisfy that requirement. You may also submit utility bills and other forms of payment as evidence. All documents must be translated into Spanish by a certified translator.

If you were born outside of Spain, your original birth certificate will suffice. Otherwise, you’ll need to obtain a certificado de Nacimiento from your country’s consulate in Madrid. This document is valid for one year only and must be renewed annually thereafter.

 Final Steps for Your La Tarjeta de Identidad de Extranjero (TIE)

Your TIE is your basic identification card. You’ll need it when you open a bank account, register at your local town hall (to pay taxes), buy property, and do all sorts of other things that require proof of identity.

In other words, it’s absolutely essential in Spain. To get one, visit your nearest police station with two forms of ID (one with a photo) and €50. If you don’t have an address yet, take along an official letter from your landlord or landlady as proof of residence.

The whole process takes about 10 minutes and can be done in English if necessary. Once you have your TIE, keep it somewhere safe you don’t want to lose it.

Final Thought

With over 100 million inhabitants, Spain is Europe’s second-most populous country, after Russia. Although most of Spain’s residents are ethnically diverse, around 68% of Spaniards identify as ethnic Spanish.

This makes Spain one of Europe’s most culturally homogeneous countries and largely explains why people who aren’t ethnically Spanish find it so difficult to become Spanish citizens. But don’t worry there are still ways for you to become a citizen