One of the ways to become a Spanish citizen is through the acquisition of Spanish Nationality by residence, for which a certain period of time of legal residence in Spain is required. In general the minimum time required is 10 years. Although there are also special cases for which a shorter period is required, i.e.:- ·Five years: people with refugee status ·Two years: for nationals from Iberia-American countries, Andorra, the Philippines, Equatorial Guinea, and Portugal or of people of Sephardic origin. ·One year: in cases where a very close link with Spain can be proved and legally recognized. Who can apply for nationality by residence? The application must be signed and submitted personally by any interested party over 18 years of age. In the case of children under 18 and over 14 years of age, they must be accompanied by their legal representative (parents or legal guardians). For children under 14 years of age their parents or legal guardian should apply on their behalf. Where to apply? The application form together with all of the required documentation should be submitted in person in the Civil Registry Office located in the area where the applicant resides. Required documentation In general the documentation to be provided is as follows: 1.Corresponding application form 2.Foreigner's identity document proving residence in Spain. 3.Full current passport 4.Birth Certificate, translated and legalized (apostilled) 5.Criminal Record Certificate from the applicant's country of origin translated and legalized. (apostilled) 6.Marriage Certificate in case of married applicant. Translated and legalized (apostilled) where applicable. 7.Proof of payment of the fee (currently € 100) 8.Criminal Record Certificate requested in Spain 9.Certificate of registration as a resident in your Borough in Spain, (Empadronamiento) 10.Cervantes Institute Diploma, Comprising of a Spanish constitutional and cultural knowledge test as well as a Spanish language test. In the case of countries where Spanish is the official language, it will not be necessary to provide the language test. There are also special conditions in some cases; i.e.:- children under 14 years of age; those with legal incapacity; refugees; those born in Spanish territory; people married or widowed by Spaniards; Sephardim or descendants of Spaniards. As this is a very long and often complicated process, we advise you to use the services of a professional to avoid problems and perhaps even an unfavorable result. José Manuel Garzón – Senior Partner. Axarquía Solicitors is part of Marbellasolicitors SLP, a group of bilingual lawyers and tax experts that have more than 15 years experience assisting foreign buyers and vendors in Andalucía, both on the coast and inland. Do not hesitate to contact us to advise you on this or any other topic that may interest you, by e-mail: mail@axarquiasolicitors

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