Minimum Vital Income

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Languages available: Castellano

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Languages available: Castellano

5. What if I forgot to send any necessary documents with my application?

From the Spanish National Social Security Institute (INSS) we will contact you to indicate the necessary documentation to resolve your application and give you a deadline to submit it.

In order to speed up the process, it is very important that you indicate a telephone number or e-mail address in your application so that we can contact you, in addition to your habitual home address.


7. What is a household unit?

A household unit consists of all persons living in the same home, united by marriage or registered as domestic partners, and their family members up to the second degree by consanguinity,  affinity or adoption, or other persons living in the home under adoption or permanent foster care.

A victim of gender-based violence who has left their family home accompanied by their children or minors under adoption or permanent foster care and their family members up to the second degree by consanguinity or affinity are also considered a household unit; as is   the unit formed by a person who has initiated separation or divorce proceeding and their children or minors, and family members up to the second degree by consanguinity,  affinity or adoption.

Finally, units formed by two or more people over 23 years of age or under 65 who live in the same home without any of the relationships indicated above are considered household units provided that have lived independently for at least 3 years prior to the application, unless they have left their habitual residence as victims of gender-based violence, they have initiated separation or divorce proceedings or other circumstances as may be determined. These household units may share a home with another household units made up of family members or with a similar relationship.

When they are members of a household unit, beneficiaries must be at least 23 years of age, or be an adult or an emancipated minor if they have children or minors under adoption or permanent foster care.

8. What requirements must I meet to qualify for the minimum living allowance?

The basic requirements are:

  • To have legal and effective residence in Spain on a continuous basis during the immediately preceding year.
  • To be in a situation of economic vulnerability, which is accredited by taking into consideration your wealth and your level of income and earnings.
  • To have applied for the current pensions and benefits to which you may be entitled, under the terms to be fixed by regulation. Social wages, minimum insertion income or similar social assistance aid granted by the Autonomous Communities are excluded.
  • That the cohabitation unit has been formed for at least a year.
  • Be registered as job seekers, in the case of adults or emancipated minors, who are not working.
  • In addition to these general requirements, you must meet a number of conditions relating to your personal circumstances and/or those of your cohabitation unit.


9. I live alone and there are no people who depend on me. Can I be entitled to the benefit?

Yes, you must be between 23 and 65 years old and not married (unless you are in the process of separation or divorce) or  in a domestic partnership.

You must also have lived independently for at least three years and have paid social security contributions for at least one year, in order to prove your financial independence. The requirement to live independently and pay social security contributions is not necessary if you have left your habitual residence as a victim of gender-based violence or have initiated separation or divorce proceedings.

Permanent users of a social, health or public health residential service benefit financed with public funds are not entitled to the benefit, except in the case of women victims of gender-based violence or victims of human trafficking and sexual exploitation.

Women of legal age who are victims of gender-based violence or victims of human trafficking and sexual exploitation may also be entitled.


11. Must all members of the cohabitation unit have legal residence in Spain?

Yes, whether it is an individual beneficiary or the members of a cohabitation unit, all must prove legal and effective residence in Spain continuously and uninterruptedly for at least the year prior to submitting the application, with the exception of:

  • Minors incorporated into the cohabitation unit by birth, adoption, foster care or permanent family placement.
  • Women victims of gender-based violence.

12. Do I lose my resident status in Spain if I travel abroad?

Habitual residence in Spain is maintained even if you take trips abroad that do not exceed a total of 90 days in each calendar year or are due to justified causes of illness.

The departure and stay abroad of any member of the cohabitation unit must be communicated in advance to the Spanish National Social Security Institute (INSS), indicating the duration of the stay.

Non-compliance with the obligation to notify the INSS of absences or trips  of more than three months will result in the suspension of payment of the benefit, without prejudice to the fact that this will entail the appropriate sanctions and the obligation to reimburse the benefits received.

13. How is the benefit paid?

The benefit will be paid monthly and is made by bank transfer to an account of the holder of the benefit.

The minimum living allowance is non-transferable. It may not be offered as a guarantee of obligations, nor be the object of total or partial assignment, compensation or discount, retention or seizure, except for the compensation that may be made in payments by the INSS in the event of having received amounts greater than those corresponding to the criteria and requirements for setting the amounts to be received.

14. What obligations do I assume as a recipient of the minimum living allowance?

The obligations assumed by the recipients of the benefit are:

a) Provide accurate documentation and information for the accreditation of requirements and the maintenance of the service, as well as to ensure the receipt of notifications and communications

b) Communicate any change or situation that could lead to the modification, suspension or extinction of the service, within thirty calendar days from the date of its occurrence.

c) Reimburse the amount of benefits unduly received.

d) Inform the INSS beforehand of any departure abroad by both the holder and the members of the cohabitation unit, stating the foreseeable duration of such departure.

e) Present an annual personal income tax return.

f) If they are not working and are able to carry out a work activity, be registered as job seekers.


15. Can I get child benefits and the minimum living allowance?

The two benefits are incompatible.

From the entry into force of the Royal Decree-Law establishing the minimum living allowance, no new applications may be submitted for child or dependent minor benefits under the Social Security system, which will be done away with. However, if you were unable to submit your application for a child or dependent minor benefit during the period of the state of alarm, you may submit it within 30 calendar days of the entry into force of the minimum living allowance, provided that you expressly indicate the date on which you intend to submit it.

If you are currently receiving this allowance, the INSS may inform you of the conversion of this benefit to the minimum living allowance during the second half of June. This conversion will be carried out provided that, according to the data that the Management Entity has on its family unit, the amount of the minimum living allowance is equal to or more favourable. However, you may choose to keep the benefit, informing the INSS of your decision, once you receive the communication of conversion between benefits sent to your home.


16. If I am a beneficiary of the minimum living allowance, do I have to pay the contribution for medicines?

No, the beneficiaries of the minimum living allowance are exempt from the user’s contribution to the outpatient pharmaceutical benefit.


17. What income and earnings are taken into account for the recognition of the benefit?

The situation of economic vulnerability is determined by taking into account the average monthly income and computable annual earnings of the previous year.

Exceptionally, and when they are not beneficiaries of unemployment benefits or subsidies, and for the exclusive purpose of calculating income, applications may be submitted until 31 December 2020 in cases of economic vulnerability that have occurred during 2020.

In these cases, in order to provisionally prove compliance with the income requirement, the proportional part of the income that the cohabitation unit has had during the time that has elapsed in the year 2020 shall be considered, provided that in the previous financial year it does not exceed half of the equity limits generally established for the aforementioned cohabitation units and whose income does not exceed by more than 50 percent the limits established for the entire cohabitation unit in the financial year 2019.

In any case, in 2021, the amounts paid will be regularised in relation to the monthly average data of the total income and computable annual income of the individual beneficiary or of all the members of the cohabitation unit, corresponding to the financial year 2020, giving rise, if applicable, to the reimbursement of the benefit.


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