Retiring in Spain

1. If you are an European Community citizen

If you are an European Community citizen, you don’t need to get the permanent residence permit anymore; but if you wish to do so, you can obtain one issued for 5 years and automatically renewable. In order to obtain such card, you also need to prove your financial means, if you are not working in Spain, and a health insurance.

European Union pensioners may transfer their rights to medical care to the Spanish Social Security medical system. If you do not have any medical insurance in your home country, you should contract a private health insurance in Spain.

When one spouse is financially dependent on the other, you must show your marriage certificate.

2. If you are from a non-European country

You should request a residence visa from the consulate in your country of origin. It is also required that you get the permanent residence permit at the Police Station of the Spanish city where you are going to reside. They will ask you a number of documentats such as the following:

  • Your passport.
  • Your residence visa.
  • A certificate which proves that you have no criminal record in your home country.
  • Current health certificate that you can obtain from a Spanish doctor.
  • Health insurance.
  • Proof that you have means of income.
  • Your marriage certificate, together with its official translation.

When children under 18 are included in the residence application, their birth certificates are needed. The fees you must pay depend on where you come from. Spain has bilateral agreements with some countries.

3. Other requirements

Whether you are European citizen or not, be aware that you will need to make some arrangements to transfer your income to Spain. You shall open a bank account in Spain. Also you will need your tax identification number NIE (Número de identificación de Extranjero) for tax purposes.

Perhaps you want to import your furniture into Spain. If you are a European Union citizen you do not have to pay any custom duty, as the European Union assures the free circulation of goods within the European Union. If you are a non-European union citizen you can import your personal possessions free of customs duty. You will have to show your residence permit and make a prior deposit, which will be later returned to you.

4. Getting legal help

We can take care of all this paperwork for you. Purchase a pre-packaged legal service delivered by our team of Spanish lawyers for a fixed one-off price:

» Applying for or renewing a Spanish residence or work permit, € 550.

» Applying for Spanish NIE number, € 145.


Need any help?