the art of being legal

How to hire employees in Spain

Josep Conesa. abogado laboralista (Barcelona)


Written by Josep Conesa

Labor and bankruptcy lawyer




Hiring employees in Spain without having a permanent establishment, location or workplace is possible within Europe. In Spain these are the first steps you will have to complete:

1st.- The first thing a foreign company must do is to obtain a NIF (Tax Identification Number). This is compulsory as it is the way in which the Tax Authority will identify your company and it will be necessary for all of the following steps.

We will need the following information in order to obtain the NIF for you:

  • Official company name
  • Tax ID from the country of residence
  • Date of incorporation or registration
  • Address for tax purposes in the residence country

2nd.- Once the NIF is obtained, the company needs to open a bank account in Spain.

3rd.-  In order to hire the employee, the equivalent national Social Security System of the company has to certify to the Spanish Social Security System that the CEO of the company is enrolled in the equivalent social security regime to the one which is required here, which in Spain is the “autonomous social security regime”.

4th.- Finally, the company has to provide the Spanish Tax Authority and Social Security with a Spanish address for notification purposes. The address could be a co-working centre or it could be the address of the employee, but trust and dependability will be vital here because all of the company's tax and social security notifications will be directed to that address provided.

In order to prepare the employment contract and hire the employee we will need:

1.- To know in more detail the activity of the company, so that we can advise on which collective agreement would most suit the company (in Spain the collective agreement sets the minimum employee wages and rights within the sector).

2.- The salary that the company will pay to the employee.

3.- The hours and timetable that the company wants him/her to do.

4.- The duration of the employment contract (temporary or indefinite).

5.- The kind of work that the employee will perform.

6.- If there are any special clauses (like non post-contractual clauses).

6.- The number of the bank account from which the Social Security will charge the company and the employee’s contribution.

Contact our lawyer in Barcelona:

josep conesa abogado Barcelona


There are so many obligations to bear in mind when setting up a company in Spain. We therefore recommend hiring a company lawyer who can help you to save time and avoid stress when setting up and meeting legal obligations.

Check out our Practical Guide of Legal Company Obligations in Spain for more information.

Publication date: 9 December 2019

Last updated: 28 March 2024