The conveyancing process is very different in Spain from the system that you may be used to in your home country. Passports and visas – EU passport holders visiting Spain for business or pleasure for up to 90 days do not need a visa.
(Notary or public official): Their mission is to make sure that certain matters are officially noted and registered, such as wills, purchase agreements and various other sorts of contracts. The notario receives fees for these services, but you cannot instruct them to act for you in the same manner as a lawyer or accountant. These fees are fixed by law and vary depending on the service required.
Taxes are inevitable and inevitably confusing, especially in a foreign country. Here is a potted guide to how to cope with Spain’s fiscal system.
The tax regime has changed dramatically in Spain in the past decade. It is far harder now to avoid paying tax and the penalties are high. Income tax in particular has risen considerably, although it remains lower than the EU average.
But it is still very difficult to get consistent advice on what you should and shouldn’t be paying. The rules keep changing, the system is complicated and you may receive different advice from different tax advisers.
Foreign residents would be wise to find yourself an English-speaking adviser to explain the intricacies of your tax situation as it will depend upon numerous complicating factors such as where you live in Spain, whether you are resident or nonresident, the source of your income and your assets.
The Spanish tax year runs from 1 January to 31 December and taxes are levied by governments at three levels: centrally, regional and locally. There are assessment and tax collection centres in all provincial capital towns whose information section (oficina de información al contribuyente) will offer free advice and help you fill in your tax declaration, though they won’t do it for you.