Many of you are considering or will soon be submitting an application for Spanish nationality. In order to obtain a resolution as soon as possible, it is crucial that your application is made accurately, as it is probably the most important step you will take in Spain as a foreigner.

The political and legal ties that bind an individual to a nation-state are expressed in his or her nationality. Therefore, it grants a series of rights, but also imposes a series of responsibilities or obligations.

By making this change, you will cease to be considered a foreigner by the Spanish Government and will be considered a national of Spain.

It is clear that the Passport provides several advantages, not only in Spain, but also throughout Europe and the rest of the world.

Therefore, in this article we will tell you 9 key aspects about Spanish nationality that you should know so that you are not denied it. Let's get started now!

What do you need to know?

  1. First of all, make sure that you meet the requirements to obtain Spanish nationality, especially in terms of legal and continuous residence, before considering the procedure.
  2. Please note that the minimum period of legal and continuous residence in Spain required to apply for Spanish nationality by residence is 10 years for most applicants, 5 years for refugees and 2 years for nationals of Latin American countries, Andorra, Philippines, Equatorial Guinea, Portugal or descendants of Sephardic people. These periods are considerably reduced when the person who wishes to apply for Spanish nationality is the spouse of a Spaniard.
  3. After making sure that you have been residing legally in Spain for the necessary time, that you do not have a criminal or police record and that you have passed the corresponding exams, you should start thinking about the necessary procedures to apply for Spanish nationality.
  4. In addition to the mandatory documentation, in our office we recommend submitting certain optional but useful documentation to complete the file and ensure that everything is correct and sufficient.
  5. Remember: do not send anything whose expiration date has passed, as this may create delays in the whole procedure.
  6. To be recognized in Spain, any document issued abroad must first be validated or apostilled, and then translated into Spanish if necessary.
  7. One of the most frequently asked questions by the clients for whom we process the Spanish nationality is the following: Do I have to renounce my nationality if I want to move to Spain? The answer is no, as established in Article 23 of the Spanish Civil Code, there is no obligation to renounce your previous nationality in order to acquire Spanish nationality, as long as you come from one of the countries with which Spain has signed a dual nationality agreement.
  8. If you have Spanish nationality, you can live and work freely in other EU countries after completing the necessary procedures to establish your residence. And you will be able to do so under the same conditions as the citizens of the country.
  9. With the help of bilateral agreements, Spain makes it easier for its citizens from non-EU countries to establish residency with relatively simple procedures. Countries such as the USA, Panama and Canada are some examples.


Data from the National Statistics Institute (INE) for October 2023 show that there are more than 5 million foreigners living in Spain on a permanent basis. This does not include the number of tourists who do not plan to stay more than 90 days.

Applying for Spanish nationality is the last and most important step you will take in Spain as a foreigner. From our office, where we are experts in foreigners and Spanish nationality, we recommend that you seek legal help and advice to be able to properly submit your application for Spanish nationality.

Do not hesitate to contact us if you want us to know your specific case and check if you meet all the requirements to be able to acquire the Spanish nationality. We will be happy to help you in this process.

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