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Residency and/or empadronamiento before/instead of visa?

Discussion forum for expats moving to or living in Spain.
Subforums: Property for Sale/Rent

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Residency and/or empadronamiento before/instead of visa?

Post Posted: Wed Jul 19, 2017 12:33 am

Bill Dieterich has a long page with tons of links and quotes about Spain. One of them, from Reddit, says

In your home country you applied for residency and the Secretary of State of Public Administrations' government delegation in the province that you requested to live in made a decision as to allow you or not based on your application as presented in one of the consulates. From that point on, their decision to allow you or not into their province became an official decision to grant or not grant residency. If you were granted residency by them, the decision was then sent to your local consulate where they, noting that you had been granted residency, processed the additional paperwork to also grant you a visa. A visa in Spain is merely a sticker attached to your passport that is needed to enter the country from abroad. It grants no rights of residency, but rather is freely given when you have already previously acquired the right of residency associated with the visa type (as you already had by that point in the process).

This suggests that it may be possible to get residency approved by going direct to the “ Secretary of State of Public Administrations” (what is the official Spanish name?). Obviously a reddit post that I can’t even locate is no proof of anything! But srticle 23.2 of Ley Orgánica 4/2000 de 11 de enero implies something similar:

Salvo en los casos en que se establezca lo contrario en los convenios internacionales suscritos por España será preciso, además, un visado. No será exigible el visado cuando el extranjero sea titular de una autorización de residencia en España o documento análogo que le permita la entrada en territorio español.

In other words, if you have an authorization of residency, you don't need a visa. And why would they bother to print this if it isn't possible to get residency without a visa?

Furthermore, although I’ve been informed by several sources, one of them a lawyer, that one cannot apply for a visa in Spain, I haven't seen that in an actual law. Moreover, one person on Facebook claims to have actually applied for and received a visa in Madrid after being advised by a lawyer to apply there.

Anyone who has done it or knows someone who has, can you describe the method you/they followed?


Wes Groleau
Happy Hobo


Regular Poster
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