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What should I take into account if my company assigns me to Spain as a worker?

Any international company can assign its workers to Spain within the framework of freedom of enterprise. Of course, before doing so, you must complete all the relevant procedures. A large part of them will be aimed at regularizing the entry and stay of their displaced employees.

The problem is that displaced persons do not always verify that the procedures have been carried out properly or are informed about the new conditions that will apply in the destination State. This task, which can be easily accomplished with a consultation with a Labor Lawyer in the destination country, can avoid unpleasant surprises for displaced people.

Regulations of the State of origin

The first thing to consider in cases of geographical mobility is the regulations of the State of origin. And this because mobility involves economic and temporary expenses, as well as a modification of working conditions (in most cases).

So, we can find two scenarios:

1.- It may be that the mobility is voluntary. For example, that the company signs a service contract with a foreign client or that it is in the process of expansion and offers the possibility of moving its staff. In this case, and as a general rule, displaced persons must be compensated, as we will develop in the section dedicated to the economic aspects of the destination of workers in Spain.

2.- But it may also be imposed by the company. In this case, in addition to the obligation to compensate the costs of the transfer, the national legislation is likely to offer certain measures of guarantee. For example, in Spain the worker is allowed to terminate his employment relationship if geographical mobility is imposed on him.

Regulations of the State of destination: legislation applicable to work in Spain

Moving to Spain will make the national tax and labor regulations applicable in practically all of the cases. Therefore, it is advisable to consult with a lawyer in Spain about the conditions that the performance of the new job here will entail.

Although we will delve into it when talking about the economic aspects to consider during the transfer, it is important to understand that income from work will be subject to personal income tax or IRNR, depending on the case. Likewise, if the displaced person avails himself of the protection of our Social Security System, he must pay the part of the contributions that corresponds to him, as detailed on the organism's website.

At the labor level, we must emphasize that not only the Workers' Statute will be applied, but also the stipulations agreed upon through collective bargaining (Agreements) and individual (contract). This implies that the Collective, Sectorial and Company Agreements will be applicable to displaced persons, which establishes a link of representation between them and the local unions.

Economic aspects of moving to Spain as a working person

Starting from the consideration that the main interested party in the displacement of its workers to Spain is the company, this should cover the travel and room expenses in the destination State. This is stipulated by both national and European regulations, although being an element of International Law, it would be advisable to pay attention to the legislation of the State of origin.

These expenses usually include travel, accommodation and meals in accordance with the rules and customs of the State of origin. It is also common that medical insurance, habitual residence or vehicles are included. And in the event that the trip is family-related, it is usual for the company to pay other expenses, such as compensation to the spouse who abandons their employment or the children's schooling, if applicable. 

Normally compensation must be paid for both travel and distance from the country of origin. And it is also common to pay compensation for the difference in living standards.

As we have already warned, income from work in Spain is generally subject to personal income tax or IRNR and to the Social Security contribution. Therefore, the company should inform its staff of the cost of living in the destination country and the benefits and charges that must be faced, both gross and net.

This breakdown of items will not only help the displaced person to know their real economic expectations, but it will also be useful in the event of any inspections. And it is that, when moving an employee to another State, their labor inspectors will be able to carry out their control and surveillance actions. For example, it is common in the EU that penalties are penalized if the company has computed the supplements for expenses within the concept of remuneration.

Posting of workers from Europe

In the case of intra-community movements, the freedom to provide services is guaranteed to any company legally established in a Member State. Directive 96/71 / EC is applicable to this kind of travel, which harmonizes and facilitates the procedures to be carried out.

For their part, Regulations 83/2004 and 987/2009 on the coordination of Social Security systems establish some requirements for collaboration, although it will be the company who must carry out these procedures. Our labor lawyers in Barcelona will be happy to assist companies and workers who need advice in the case of relocation to Spain.

What if my company sends me to Spain from another Member State, but I am not a European citizen?

People who legally reside and work in any Member State can move to other Member States, regardless of their nationality. In this case, the previous regulations would apply, as if we were dealing with a Union citizen (see CJEU C-43/93, Van der Elst case).

Posting of workers from other States (outside Europe)

In the case of the posting of employees from other States to work in Spain, very similar rules apply to those that apply in the European Union. Therefore, all the precautions and advice offered so far are fully applicable.

In these cases, the specific legal regime to be applied will depend on the relations between the States of origin and destination. Which makes a detailed study essential before knowing what legal and economic implications the displacement will have for the worker.

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