Tax residency and the 183-days rule
15 Feb 2018
Anyone staying more than 183 days in a calendar year in Spain is deemed as resident. Sporadic absences are taken into account when determining presence in Spain unless tax residence in another country can be proven. Therefore, someone staying less than 183 days in Spain could be deemed tax resident in case he/she is not resident somewhere else.
The Spanish Supreme Court ruled last November against the Tax Authorities by declaring that spending more than 183 days out of Spain can never be considered as sporadic absence, independently to the intention of the taxpayer.
By definition, a sporadic absence must be occasional and not drawn out over time, and staying more than 183 days abroad cannot be considered ever sporadic. And for this to be an objective criteria and not subjective, the intention of the person is irrelevant but the fact of the number of days spent abroad.