The Spanish Council of Ministers approved the Regulation governing the new procedure for acquiring nationality through residency by means of Spanish Royal Decree 1004/2015, of 6 November. The idea is to establish a process that is purely administrative (not mixed with a judicial part and an administrative part as was the case up until now) based on the electronic processing of all phases which will considerably shorten the resolution periods. The procedure is handled by the General Directorate for Registries and Notaries and resolutions are communicated to interested parties within a maximum of one year following application.
A transitory period has been established until 30 June 2017, during which interested parties may file their application with the Civil Register corresponding to their address. However, the process will be completed via the corresponding electronic application after that date and through authorization agreements to be signed between the Spanish Ministry of Justice and General State Administration organizations and other professional associations.
This Regulation also establishes the payment of fees relating to the nationality application but does not include the price of the objective testing for Spanish foreign language diplomas (DELE, as they are known in Spanish) or Spanish constitutional and cultural knowledge (CCSE, as it is known in Spanish) designed and administered by the Cervantes Institute which is responsible for implementing the objective criteria for both tests. The Directorate General for Registries and Notaries may obtain the results of these tests through a remote query to the Cervantes Institute which releases interested parties from having to submit the corresponding certificates.
Foreigners who are enlisted in the Spanish Armed Forces will have specific rules for acquiring Spanish nationality such as the elimination of swearing or making a solemn oath before the Spanish flag of loyalty to the King and obedience to the Constitution which they would have already done.
The process will continue to include the obligation of obtaining the reports deemed necessary from other Public Administrations such as the Ministry of the Interior or National Intelligence Centre.