Why living in Spain has just got a whole lot easier

As British citizens are well aware, moving to Spain post-Brexit has required a visa, whose conditions are often expensive or challenging to fulfil. However, the recent approval of the Spanish startup law has transformed the scenario with the introduction of the Digital Nomad Visa (DNV). As a result, British citizens now find themselves in front of an open door to easier living in Spain. 

“We believe this new option included in the startup law is a real game-changer,” says Soukaina Dlaima at Del Canto Chambers. “Not only do third-country nationals such as the British and Americans have access to an easy visa, but they can also benefit from substantial tax benefits. 

Key points about the Digital Nomad Visa in Spain 

As its name implies, the DNV is intended for remote workers. In this case, those who work for companies mostly outside Spain. Its main characteristics are as follows: 

Length of visa and residence permit

  • The visa gives the applicant access to a residence permit for one year, followed by two-year extensions, up to five years in total. 
  • The applicant’s family (spouse, dependent children and dependent parents) may also live in Spain. 
  • Once five years have passed, both the applicant and family may apply for a long-term residence permit to live and work in Spain. 

Type of remote work 

  • At least 80% of your remote work must be for companies outside Spain. 
  • You must have been working for the company for at least three months before your visa application. 
  • Your contract with the company must include agreed remote working terms and conditions. 
  • The company must have been trading for at least one year before you move to Spain. 

Key tax benefits from the Digital Nomad Visa 

As well as allowing third-country nationals to live in Spain while they work remotely, the DNV also comes with substantial tax benefits. In a nutshell, it permits the visa holder to take advantage of the so-called Beckham Rule. Specifically, beneficiaries of the digital nomad visa have the following tax perks: 

  • Income tax has a fixed rate of 24% on annual earnings up to €600,000 a year. Tax on income in excess is levied at 47%. 
  • Expats enjoy a status similar to the non-dom in the UK, whereby all their worldwide income and assets are excluded from Spanish tax obligations for six years. 

“We believe the digital nomad visa is an excellent option for a remote worker earning €20,000 to €600,000 a year in Spain,” says Dlaima. She adds that it’s also an excellent option for anyone with employment income between €20,000 and €600,000 in Spain, coupled with substantial assets and income outside of Spain

Final thoughts 

The new visa option undoubtedly opens the door to British nationals looking to move to Spain, but, before you rush to fill in your application, we’d advise careful consideration of the following: 

  • Anglo-Spanish tax implications for your fiscal situation now and in the future. 
  • Inheritance tax obligations because IHT is levied on Spanish-based assets and paid by Spanish tax residents. 

We would advise legal counsel on the above to ensure your financial interests are protected at all times. 

And last but not least, while moving to Spain is a dream for many, a relocation has significant implications. Don’t forget to consider health insurance, schools, language and lifestyle factors, plus of course, where you might want to buy a property to live in Spain. 

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