Spanish Nationality

Spanish Nationality

Foreign citizens can obtain a Spanish citizen's passport on the basis of a residence permit.

This method of acquisition of nationality requires continued legal residence in Spain for 10 years immediately prior to the application.


Documents have to be provided with the application

  1. Full and valid passport from the country of origin;
  2. Foreign Identity Card. Family card of citizen of the European Union or Certificate of Foreign Registration or Central Registry of citizen of the Union;
  3. Birth certificate of the interested party, duly translated and authenticated;
  4. Criminal record of his country of origin, translated and authenticated in accordance with existing international agreements or conduct consular certificate issued on the basis of consultation with the competent authorities of the country of origin;
  5. Marriage certificate if the applicant is married;
  6. Certificate of registration. It can be replaced with the authorization of the Ministry of Justice consultation contained in the application form;
  7. Proof of payment of the fee;
  8. Diploma of the Cervantes Institute the test constitutional and sociocultural knowledge (CCSE);
  9. Diploma of the Cervantes Institute the test of knowledge of Spanish (DELE). It can be replaced with the authorization of the Ministry of Justice consultation contained in the application form.


In the case of nationals of a country where the official language is Castilian, exempt from the exam DELE under Regulation residence nationality, passport or certificate of nationality proving the exemption.


There are cases in which the period of residence required can be reduced. These are:

  • 5 years: for the granting of Spanish nationality to those persons who have obtained refugee status
  • 2 years: for nationals of Ibero-American countries, Andorra, the Philippines, Equatorial Guinea, Portugal or persons of Sephardic origin.
  • 1 year:
    • Persons born in Spanish territory.
    • Persons who have not exercised their right to Spanish nationality by option.
    • o Persons who have been legally subject to the guardianship (in the care of a guardian) or foster care (foster care allowing for the reduction of the legal residency period to one year is that in which there is a resolution issued by the public body responsible for the protection of minors in the relevant territory or judicially recognized foster care) of a Spanish citizen or institution for two consecutive years, including where they remain in this situation at the time of application.
    • o Persons who, at the time of the application, have been married for one year to a Spanish national and are not legally separated and have not had a common-law separation.
    • o The widower or widow of a Spanish national, if, at the time of the death of the spouse, they were not separated in fact or legally.
      o Those born outside Spain to a Spanish father or mother (also born outside Spain), grandfather or grandmother, provided that all were originally Spanish.


The legislation also provides for other ways to obtain Spanish citizenship:

  1. Nationality by naturalisation;
  2. Nationality for those of Spanish origin;
  3. Nationality by possession of status;
  4. Nationality by option.

In each case, may be requested additional documents.