Residence permit


Country Report: Residence permit Last updated: 30/11/20


Both refugees and beneficiaries of subsidiary protection benefit from a residence permit of 5 years once they are granted status.[1] The responsible authority for issuing the residence permit is the Police of Aliens’ Law and Documentation.

There are no difficulties systematically encountered in the issuance and renewal of those residence permits in practice.

The issuance of residence permits for humanitarian reasons is foreseen under the Aliens Act. This residence permit has a one-year duration.

The law foresees the possibility to request this kind of permit under the following conditions:[2]

  • Being a victim of any of the offences collected under Articles 311 to 315, 511.1 and 512 of the Criminal Code, concerning offences against the rights of workers;
  • Being the victim of crimes based on racist, anti-Semitic or other kind of discrimination relating to ideology, religion or beliefs of the victim, the ethnic group, race or nation to which they belong, their sex or sexual orientation, or disease or disability;
  • Being a victim of crime by domestic violence, provided that a judicial decision has established the status of victim; or
  • Having a severe disease requiring health care specialist, not accessible in the country of origin, where the interruption of treatment would pose a serious risk to the health or life.

Some problems in the issuance of such permits to Venezuelan nationals have been registered in 2019 in some provinces, as they were denied in cases where passports were not presented. In March 2019 the Director-General for Migration and the Police Commissioner for Aliens and Borders adopted a joint instruction establishing that Venezuelan nationals can submit an expired passport when applying for any authorisation and permit foreseen by the Alien Act.[3] The instruction has been adopted following UNHCR guidance’s of March 2018 on the flows of Venezuelans,[4] and following the decision issued by the National Court (Audiencia Nacional) on 26 June 2018 in order to resolve issue faced by Venezuelans in practice.[5]

[1] Article 34(3) Aliens Regulation.

[2] Article 126 Aliens Regulation.

[3] ‘Instrucción Conjunta del Director General de Migraciones y del Comisario General de Extranjería y Fronteras por la que se determina el criterio a tener en cuenta respecto a los procedimientos de extranjería impulsados o tramitados a favor de nacionales venezolanos en España’, adopted on 15 March 2019, available in Spanish at:

[4] UNHCR, ‘Nota de orientación sobre el flujo de venezolanos’, March 2018, available in Spanish at:

[5] Audiencia Nacional, Decision SAN 2522/2018, 26 June 2018, available in Spanish at:


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