Special procedural guarantees


Country Report: Special procedural guarantees Last updated: 22/05/23


The law does not foresee specific procedural guarantees for vulnerable asylum seekers, except for the special rule on unaccompanied asylum-seeking children who are entitled to have their application examined through an urgent procedure, which halves the duration of the whole process. As explained in Regular Procedure: Fast-Track Processing, the urgent procedure reduces time limits for the whole asylum process from 6 months to 3. Beyond this, the existing protocols on unaccompanied children and victims of trafficking do not imply special guarantees.

The OAR states that its staff is trained on EUAA training modules, but that there are no specialised units dealing with cases from vulnerable groups.[1] The OAR did not have any caseworkers specialised in gender violence as of the start of 2022, as far as the author is aware.

A report published by Accem in 2019 on LGTBI+ asylum seekers investigates how their credibility is assessed during the international protection procedure. The publication underlines that the adoption of guidelines on the criteria to follow while assessing credibility during the asylum procedure represents an important measure in order to reduce and avoid discriminatory, unequal or prejudicial elements during such an assessment,[2] but no common guidance was provided as of 2022.

Several concerns regarding the measures and provisions regarding identification, age assessment and protection of unaccompanied children are discussed in Identification. In October 2022, UNHCR and Universidad Pontificia Comillas published guidelines addressed to professionals dealing with separated and unaccompanied migrant children.[3]

Although the Asylum Act does not foresee the exemption of persons with special needs from the Border Procedure, in practice the OAR makes exceptions for applicants such as pregnant women or persons requiring medical assistance, presumed trafficking victims, who are admitted to the territory.[4]




[1] Information provided by OAR, 20 August 2017.

[2] Accem, ‘Condiciones sociales y legales de las personas solicitantes de protección internacional y refugiadas LGTBI en España’, December 2019, available in Spanish at: https://cutt.ly/OtUGbah.

[3] ACNUR, Universidad Pontificia Comillas, ‘Guía para profesionales que trabajan con niños y niñas refugiados no acompañados’, October 2022, available at: https://bit.ly/3JfJc3J.

[4] Information provided by Accem’s legal service in April 2023.

Table of contents

  • Statistics
  • Overview of the legal framework
  • Overview of the main changes since the previous report update
  • Asylum Procedure
  • Reception Conditions
  • Detention of Asylum Seekers
  • Content of International Protection
  • ANNEX I – Transposition of the CEAS in national legislation