I am irregularly in Spain: What residence permits can I apply for?

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Uncomfortable situation: You want to reside long-term in Spain, but you are currently there irregularly. While it’s true that this situation significantly limits your options, as it reduces the range of available residence permits, let us tell you that not all is lost. In this blog, we want to inform you about the residence permits still available to you.

At Nodisea, we are lawyers specializing in Immigration Law, so we are very familiar with the applicable regulations and can accompany you throughout the application process. We have extensive experience assisting foreign nationals who are irregularly in Spain.

What residence permits can I apply for?

  • Arraigo Laboral: here, it is necessary to prove a minimum stay of 2 years in Spain and the existence of employment relationships lasting no less than six months. This permit is currently processed, as a general rule, much faster than the following ones.
  • Arraigo Social: the most characteristic elements of this permit require 3 years of proven stay in Spain, a demonstrated integration into Spanish society, and proof of economic sufficiency.
  • Arraigo Familiar: certain relatives of a Spanish citizen will have access to this excellent residence authorization. It is granted for 5 years and allows working both as an employee and self-employed.
  • EU Family Member Card: this permit is almost identical to the family-based residency, with the difference that the family connection can be proven with any citizen of an EU member country.
  • Residency Permits for Humanitarian Reasons: These permits are reserved for foreigners who are victims of certain crimes defined in the Spanish legal system; victims of severe diseases that have occurred and must be treated in Spain due to certain circumstances; and foreigners who can prove that traveling back to their country of origin or from which they come, in order to apply for the corresponding visa, implies a risk to their safety or that of their family, and who meet the other requirements to obtain a temporary residency or residency and work permit.
  • Authorization for Foreign Women Victims of Gender Violence: Finally, we want to highlight the temporary residence and work permit for exceptional circumstances for women victims of gender violence. You can apply for this authorization once you have a protection order or a report from the Public Prosecutor’s Office.


As you can see, being irregularly in Spain does not necessarily mean the impossibility of obtaining a residence permit in our country. The Spanish legal system provides several mechanisms to become a legal resident in Spain.

You can schedule a free consultation with us so that we can provide more information about the available ways to regularize your administrative situation in Spain. We also invite you to read our blogs where you can find valuable information on many relevant aspects when starting your migration journey to Spain.


Welcome to NODISEA Blog, where expertise meets diversity. We are seasoned immigration lawyers based in Spain, fluent in English, Spanish, German, and Arabic. Let us guide you through the intricacies of Spanish immigration law.


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