Spanish nationality

Spanish Nationality

The current Spanish legislation recognizes de right of those descendants of Spanish nationals, whether they were born inside or outside Spanish territory, and those who were born in the country, as well as those individuals who due to certain circumstances may opt for this citizenship to gain or retrieve their Spanish nationality, with all their rights and duties.

In our Law Firm, our specialized group of attorneys knows very well the Immigration Laws and the application of the articles in the Civil Code rulling the Spanish Nationality matters; therefore, they can help you presenting your case before the corresponding Spanish Civil Registry or Consulate to acquire your Spanish citizenship.

In order to retrieve or gain Spanish citizenship for you or an individual related to you, you must be able to provide the corresponding supporting documentation given any of the following conditions established in the Law to acquire the Nationality:

Spaniards by Origin

The Law establishes that individuals of Spanish origin are:

  • Those born to a Spanish father or mother.

  • Those born in Spain to foreign parents, if at least one parent was born in Spain (with the exception of the children of diplomats).

  • Those born in Spain to foreign parents, if both parents have no nationality (i.e. are stateless), or if the legislation of neither parents grants their children nationality.

  • Children born in Spain whose parents’ identity is unknown.

  • Minors under 18 adopted by a Spaniard are also of Spanish origin.

Spanish citizenship by option

This is a benefit offered by Spanish legislation to the following individuals provided certain conditions:

  • Persons who are over 18, whether adoptees or whose parentage is determined, may opt for Spanish nationality within two years after the formalization of the adoption or the parentage or birth has been determined.

  • Persons whose legal guardianship have been granted to a Spaniard.

  • Persons whose father or mother was Spanish and was born in Spain.

Nationality via Residence

If you have been legally and continuously residing in Spain for a period of 10 years, you may acquire the Nationality. According to Spanish Authorities you must prove as well good citizenship and a sufficient degree of integration in Spanish society in order to get the citizenship.

There are certain cases where you may acquire your nationality before the said time:

  • Five years of Residence

  • For people who have obtained refugee status.

  • Two years of Residence

  • For nationals of Ibero-American countries, Andorra, the Philippines, Equatorial Guinea, and Portugal, and persons of Sephardic origin.

  • One year of Residence for:

  • People who were born on Spanish territory.

  • People pending for duly exercising their right to acquire Spanish nationality by option.

  • People who have been legally subject to legal guardianship or foster care (when there is a resolution by a public office to protect minors and a judicially recognized foster care) by a Spanish citizen or institution for two consecutive years.

  • Persons who, at the moment of application, have been married to a Spaniard for a year and are not legally separated.

  • Widowers or widows of Spaniards, if they were not legally separated at the time of the spouse’s death.

  • People born outside Spanish territory to parents (also born outside Spain) and grandparents provided that they were originally Spanish.

Please note that this application to acquire Nationality can only be issued in Spanish Territory.

Nationality by Naturalization

This proceeding is ex gratia and not governed by the general rules of administrative procedure. Naturalization shall be granted by the Government through Royal Decree after examining certain exceptional circumstances.

For each of the aforesaid cases, you must submit different documents. Our legal staff can review all the corresponding documentation in order to avoid delays in such proceeding. Please remember as well that all documents must be duly legalized and translated into Spanish by a certified public interpreter.

If you wish to have a legal consultation or be assessed on this matter, you can contact us, and one of our attorneys will guide your application.

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