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Working in Spain

Updated: Nov 8, 2023

Ayşe İkbal Aytin, author of the article with title "Working in Spain "

Author: Ayşe İkbal Aytin

Date of Publication: 14/10/2022

From its delicious food and beautiful nature to its diverse culture, Spain holds many features that attracts thousands of people from around the World. Not only is it one of the most visited countries, but it has also become a first option for living. If you are one of those people who fell in love with the country and wants to live in Spain, then you’re in the right place. This guide will give you an insight about Spain’s labor laws and help you know about your rights as a foreign worker in Spain.

Labor Law in Spain

Men shaking hands - Working in Spain

Like in any other European country, labor law in Spain is very comprehensive and consists of different statutes, decisions and practices. Recent reforms and legislation address important issues such as good working conditions, gender equality, fair wage, social security. So apart from its sunshine and fascinating culture Spain’s strong labor laws also attract people.

Foreign Workers’ Right to Work In Spain

Approximately 10% of the people living and working in Spain are foreigners. Depending on their country of origin citizens need to apply for a visa in order to work in Spain as a foreigner. Yet there are different types of work permits for different types of jobs and each has different requirements. In any case it’s crucial to know the details about the requirements when applying.

Types of Work Visas

Spanish passport - Working in Spain

1. Employee Visa

In order to get this kind of visa, a person needs to have a job offer. Following the offer, employers can apply for a work permit to the Ministry of Labor on behalf of the worker.

Employee visa can be provided to the person if the job is identified as Shortage Occupation. This means there is no other suitable candidate from the EU and in this case the person needs to be a highly-skilled employee. In addition, applications must be made in the country of origin except for some types of visas for which the employer makes the initial


2. Seasonal Work Visas

The seasonal work visa application process is similar to the process of obtaining an employee visa except this kind of visa requires the worker to state that he will be back to his country of origin once the contract has finished. Also employers must provide an appropriate accommodation and cover the travel expenses.

3. EU Blue Card

People who have completed a higher education for at least three years, can work as a professional. Another alternative is that they have at least five years of experience at a professional level and can apply for the EU Blue Card.

Building - Working in Spain

4. Au Pairs Visa

Au pairs can apply for this kind of visa if they meet the conditions listed above:

  • To be between 17 and 30 years old.

  • Having an agreement with the host family in which the salary and conditions are stated.

  • Having proof that shows you are able to support yourself financially and have medical insurance.

5. Freelance Visa

To apply for a freelance or self-employed visa there are few conditions to meet:

  • To be older than 18 years old.

  • Showing a proof of sufficient finances to support yourself and also to conduct your business.

  • Having professional skills and experience related to the business.

  • Providing the document of no criminal record taken from the country you’ve spent your last five years in.


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