Increase in Golden Visa applications for British investors

The Golden Visa is one of the biggest incentives for British investments currently. Brexit and the COVID-19 pandemic have been the two crucial factors in explaining the increase in investor visa applications and their expected growth.

Up until now, British citizens did not need to conduct any special formalities to move within the Schengen area. The EU membership facilitated their mobility, as well as the provision of services from third countries. Nevertheless, since Brexit, British citizens have lost this advantage. An advantage that many of them have been able to regain through an investor visa.

What is the Golden Visa and why are British investors interested in it?

About the Golden Visa or the investor’s visa, there is an article in our blog where it is explained more in depth. As been mentioned on previous occasions, the visa lightens the paperwork the investor need to fulfill when obtaining a residence and work permit in Spain.

This measure is used in many countries to incentivize the attraction of capital. Until now, Chinese, Russian and American citizens were the main beneficiaries of this privileged procedure.

However, Brexit has led to a reversal of the trend. With British nationals benefiting from the procedures to be followed by citizens of third countries in their relations with the European Union, many have found a way to ease the bureaucratic burden.

Some advantages of the Golden Visa for British nationals

In addition, other factors make the Golden Visa the ideal option for the British citizen:

  1. On the one hand, the pandemic has contributed to the offshoring and teleworking. Therefore, many people who were providing services in person or managed their companies in-person, have become accustomed to using digital means, which allow them to attend to their business from abroad.
  2. On the other hand, people from Great Britain continue to be the Europeans who invest the most in Real Estate in Spain. Many factors contribute to this, such as geographical proximity, the pleasant climate, the price of land and an interest for the Iberian culture.
  3. Moreover, many British companies have subsidiaries in Spain. In addition, Spain is one of the preferred places to retire after a long working or business career.

Ultimately, Spain has been, is and continues to be one of the preferred destinations for British citizens. Therefore, it is no surprise this growing trend in visa applications for investors.

Other general Golden Visa advantages

It is worth mentioning some of the other main advantages of the Golden Visa, which apply equally to Great Britain nationals and from any other country:

  1. Firstly, the investor visa is subjected to fewer requirements and shorter time limits than other residence permits. Additionally, it includes authorization to work, which is not necessarily linked to other residence permits.
  2. Secondly, this authorization allows mobility within the Schengen area. Therefore, the British citizen could regain their facility to move within the European Union.
  3. Thirdly, the visa can cover, within the same investment, all the components of the family unit. Consequently, no further formalities will be necessary nor the separation of the family to facilitate travelling.
  4. Furthermore, maintaining the Golden Visa does not require residency in Spain. It is true that it demands an annually displacement to conduct the maintenance and renewal procedures, but it will not be necessary for the investor to establish their residence here.

How is the visa obtained and what rights does it give?

The key to the Golden Visa relies on the investment required for its application. This is usually done buying real estate; it is sufficient to purchase real estate with a value equal to or greater than 500.000€.

It is also possible to make investments equal to or greater than:

  • 1.000.000 € in shares of Spanish capital companies, investment funds, venture capital or bank deposits in Spanish financial institutions.
  • 2.000.000 € in Spanish public debt.

Therefore, the investor visa is the preferred option within the luxury or financial investment sectors. However, it can also be granted under business criteria. This requires starting or importing a business project to be developed in Spain and which is considered and accredited as being of general interest.

This option may be more difficult to prove, and requires the creation of work positions, relevant investments with socio-economic impact in the target geographical area or an important contribution to scientific-technical innovation.

Once the visa is obtained, the applicant and his family can reside and work in Spain for two years. If they maintain their investment, they can renew the visa for another five-year period.

As it has been mentioned, the permit will also facilitate travel within the Schengen area. In addition, it will make immigration procedures more flexible: from obtaining permits in other European Union countries to applying for Spanish nationality if desired, once the residency requirements have been met.

I am a British citizen and I would like the Golden Visa: what should I do?

Although the application procedures for investor visas are simpler and faster than other immigration procedures, it is still subjected to the formalities of administrative procedures. Therefore, it is advisable to get the assistance of a legal advisor specialized in the matter.

The lawyer can also help when it comes to making the investment: detection of opportunities, review of contracts, control of legality, tax advice, business start-up, validation of educational qualifications and other public documents…

Our advice, therefore, is that if you are a British national and want to use the Golden Visa to obtain your residence and work permit, please contact us. We will handle all the formalities to facilitate your travel to Spain.