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What are the legal updates in immigration law?

What are the legal updates in immigration law? Publicado: 08-08-2023

What are the legal updates in immigration law? What are the legal updates for foreigners who want to work in Spain? What visa or permit do I need if I want to work in Spain? At Gentile Law, expert lawyers in the processing of visas and residences as well as in immigration law, we tell you the most important legal updates to take into account regarding immigration law.


What has changed in immigration law?

What are the legal updates for foreigners who want to work in Spain? In the last year, Spain has witnessed significant developments in its immigration legislation, with a series of crucial reforms introduced in its immigration law. As the Spanish government endeavors to strike a balance between national security, social integration, and respect for human rights, it has enacted measures that seek to streamline immigration procedures, promote inclusivity, and enhance opportunities afforded to foreign nationals seeking to reside in Spain.

The reforms in Spain`s immigration laws have expanded the eligibility of foreigners in many situations to obtain residency or work permits with a simpler process. This article will analyze the regulations passed in the Royal Degree 629/2022 to highlight the benefits of these updates for foreigners.

The regulations, which became effective August 15, 2022 and have been developed over the past 12 months by the immigration practice, incorporated the following changes. What changes are introduced by the new immigration regulations in Spain? (which will be explained in more detail below):

  1. Facilitate the ability of international students towork in Spain.
  2. Update the measures of "arraigo social," "arraigo laboral," and family reunification, as well as creating a new "arraigo" for the training/studies of foreigners.
  3. Favor the hiring of employees while in their country of origin.
  4. Introduce bureaucratic improvements to the application process.


1) How do the new regulations help international students who want to work in Spain?

Are you a student and would you like to work in Spain? We explain one of the legal updates in immigration. You can also read our article: What is the Internship Visa and how to apply for it in Spain? One of the purposes of the new immigration reform is to facilitate the assimilation of those currently in Spain into the labor market. This is done in part by making it easier for international students who are studying in the country to work. The new regulations improve the situation of international students in several regards:

  1. During their studies, international students are now permitted to work up to 30 hours weekly, provided that the job does not conflict with their school schedule. This is an increase from the 20 hours that were permitted under the previous law.
  2. The student visa will automatically include the aforementioned work permit without the student having to complete additional steps.
  3. Upon concluding their study program, students can transition from a student visa to a work permit without having to have spent three years in Spain, as was previously required. This work permit will be granted for both freelance and employed work.


2) How have the measures of "arraigo social," "arraigo laboral," and family reunification been affected?

What is the residence permit for "arraigo social" in Spain? What does the residence permit for "arraigo familiar" in Spain consist of? What does the Spanish residence permit for "arraigo laboral" consist of? You can find more information in our article: "¿Cómo solicitar el permiso de residencia en España por arraigo?".

This section of the article will discuss the different updates to the various "arraigo" types. "Arraigo" is a legal concept that addresses the condition of people living in Spain in irregular situations.

In the case of "arraigo social," there will no longer be the requirement of a minimum employment contract of one year. Now, the length of the employment contract is not evaluated as long as the salary is greater than the minimum wage (SMI). The applicant is also required to work 30 hours per week unless they are the caregiver of a minor. In this case, the requirement is lowered to 20 hours per week.

With respect to "arraigo laboral," this procedure is directed at those who are currently working irregularly but have worked legally in the past. In order to apply, the applicant will need to prove at least 30 hours of weekly work in an irregular situation for the past six months or 15 hours per week for the past year. They must also demonstrate that they have worked legally during the last two years.

The new regulations, with regard to family reunification, seek to maintain the family unit of Spanish citizens within Spain. The reform introduces more flexible requirements for minors, disabled or vulnerable people and lowers the necessary financial means required to apply. Those who make at least minimum wage will be able to regroup with all of their children. Those making less than minimum wage, but more than the minimum vital income, will be able to reunite with one child and then must prove a fixed amount of additional income for each child after that.

Finally, the recent immigration reform creates a new category of arraigo which applies to foreigners looking to complete training/studies related to employment. This permit will be granted for 12 months to those who can prove that they have been continuously living in Spain for the past two years. The permit will allow for provisional residency in the country but will not grant the right to work until after the training has been successfully completed.


3) How do the new legal updates benefit foreign workers residing in their home countries?

How to work in Spain if you are a foreigner? Under the old version of the law, it was tough to hire foreign talent due to the strong preferential treatment of employing those already legally residing in Spain. Now, the list of jobs that foreigners would be eligible for; namely those on the list of difficult positions to fill (Catálogo de Ocupaciones de Difícil Cobertura), will be expanded much more liberally.

The new regulations require that a company post a job for only eight days before they are allowed to begin a simplified procedure for certifying the job as difficult to fill, thus opening it up to foreign workers.


4) What are the changes to the administrative procedures related to obtaining one of these visas/work permits in immigration law?

What`s new in immigration law? What`s new in the new regulations for foreigners who want to work or live in Spain? Along with the changes mentioned above, the new regulations also address the associated bureaucratic procedures in the following ways:

  1. Creating a new administrative unit (UTEX) to optimize the function of the Foreigner`s Office by reducing the time it takes to process residency permits.
  2. Allowing for online visa applications to the consulate office in the foreigner`s home country.

Both of these measures seek to increase the efficiency of the process by reducing the time it takes to receive an answer regarding the application.


What are the legal updates in immigration law? What visa or permit do I need if I want to work in Spain? Gentile Law, expert lawyers in the processing of visas and residences as well as in immigration law, we understand the complexity of immigration procedures and strive to assist our clients at every step of the process. We understand that these procedures can be especially confusing so we are happy to offer our services of advice and assistance with our professional experts in the field.

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