How to be a foreigner self-employed in Spain: Definitive guide

If your intention is to acquire a temporal residence in Spain and work on your own, you have reached the right place.
As a general rule, if you don’t have a residence permission that allows you to work, you can’t perform any economic activity in Spain. Become a self-employed if you are a foreigner in Spain is not easy, because you have to present much documentation that you need to understand. In this brief guide we are going to present them in a general perspective.

Requirements to become a foreigner self-employed in Spain

People who want to acquire the residence permission and work by their own, need to accomplish the following requirements:

  • Not being a citizen of a State of the Schengen area.
  • Not being in an irregular situation in Spain.
  • Not having a criminal record in Spain or in the previous countries of residence for crimes regulated in the Spanish legal system.
  • Not to be prohibited from entering Spain or to be within the period of commitment of no return to Spain.
  • Possessing required professional qualification or accredited experience in the activity that will be developed. In some cases, will be necessary to be a collegiate member of a professional association.
  • Prove that the planned investment is sufficient and that employment will be created.
  • Accredit the possession of the economic resources necessary for maintenance and stay in Spain, once deducted those required for the maintenance of the activity.

In any case, not all of these requirements are mandatory for anyone who wants to acquire the residence; it will depend on the assumption chose.

How to apply for authorization to be self-employed in Spain?

The foreigner must present personally the application for temporary residence and work authorisation (EX01) in the Spanish Consular Office corresponding according to his place of residence. Next to it, you will have to bring the following documentation:

  • Copy of passport or valid travel document recognized as valid in Spain and with a minimum validity of four months.
  • Certificate of criminal record issued by the authorities of the countries in which you have resided in the las 5 years.
  • Health certificate to prove that you do not suffer any of the diseases susceptible to quarantine provided in the International Health Regulations.
  • The qualification or accreditation in accordance with the training required for the exercise of the profession.
  • Accreditation of the necessary economic investment. Otherwise, sufficient commitment of support from financial institutions or others.
  • Project of the establishment or activity to be carried out, with an indication of the planned investment, its expected profitability and the jobs anticipated with that creation.
  • Authorizations or licenses those are required for the installation, opening or operation of the projected activity or for the professional exercise, indicating the situation in which the procedures for its achievement are found.

The Consular Office will register your request and resolve it. If it is admitted, you must pick it up personally within a month. During its validity you will have to enter Spain.

Once in Spanish territory, you will be able to start your activity and you must join and pay into Social Security. If passes one month from entering Spain and there is no record of such affiliation and registration, the authorisation to work as self-employed foreigner may be extinguished.

From here there is a series of tax obligations if you are a self-employed: presentation of the declarations of payments on account of Personal Income Tax (130 Form) and VAT (303 Form) and other obligations, if it is the case, such as 369 Form, 111 Form, 115 Form, 123 Form, etc. If this is your case, we can help you through this process of declarations.

We encourage you to contact GM Tax. We are an expert consultancy in advising foreigners and we treat each case with professionalism and proximity.

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