Our website uses  cookies for statistical purposes.

  • Calle Villalar, 7, Bajo Izquierda, Madrid, Spain
  • clients(at)lawyersspain.eu
  • +34 938 07 40 56
Our Articles

Accounting Services in Spain

Accounting Services in Spain

Our team of accountants in Spain will guide you step by step through the stages linked to tax registration and will also inform you about the accounting requirements. All Spanish companies are subject to Commercial Law which also imposes accounting standardsSpanish companies must also submit annual balance sheets and other relevant accounting documents with the Trade Register

 Quick Facts  
Who requires accounting services in Spain

Spanish companies or foreign entities incorporated in Spain, in respect to the Commercial Law and accounting requirements

Applicable accounting legislation in Spain

– Spanish Accounting Standards,

– IFRS (International Financial Reporting Standards)

Types of accounting services we offer

– bookkeeping and payroll for companies and freelancers,

– preparation and submission of annual financial statements,

– financial analysis and reports,

– fiscal and tax advice 

Tax advice and compliance 

– tax legislation updates for companies,

– tax-saving options,

– assistance in terms of tax payments,

– best practices for tax planning in firms

We offer support for tax registration 

– collaboration with the Spanish tax authorities,

– draftting and submitting the company documents for tax registration

Financial planning for company owners in Spain

We understand the financial needs of business owners and we can propose specific risk-free investment plans, alongside tax-efficient solutions.

 Risk assessment and evaluation 

Financial measures can be offered to reduce the business risks for the company’s activities.

Types of audit services

– external and financial audits,

– internal control audits,

– regulatory audits,

– financial statements audits,

– compliance audits,

– operational audits

Tax minimization methods available

– loan advance payments,

– retirement plans,

– travel deductions,

– office supply deductions 

Personalized financial consultancy services

Clients can benefit from services involving pensions and retirement advice, estate planning, forecast for future finances.

 Investment consultancy for high-net-worth individuals

Wealth management and dedicated plans for a proper administration of assets

Financial and analysis reports for companies

They can reveal the business direction of a firm and help entrepreneurs with future strategies for development.

Human resources services available 

We can manage employment contracts, recruite staff for companies, handle administrative procedures etc.

Expertise provided by certified accountants (YES/NO)


Fiscal year in Spain

From January 1st to 31 of December

Accounting services available in Spain

Our team of accountants in Spain offers a wide range of accounting services among which we mention the following: tax registration, VAT registrationpayrollaudit services, the preparation of the annual financial statements, and tax minimization solutions. Our specialists can also provide assistance on the tax compliance procedures available here. 

The following video offers a short presentation on the accounting services available in Spain

Our team of accountants in Spain will help your company grow, by providing personalized accounting services, which will be delivered in accordance with the provisions of the applicable rules of law. Investors can request information on the manner in which Spanish companies have to submit VAT returns to the local tax authorities.

We can also inform businessmen about the types of accounting documents that have to be prepared on a yearly basis. In case you need other types of services in this country, for example, assistance with making a will in Spainour lawyers can help you.

What are the basic accounting requirements in Spain? 

Once the procedure of company formation in Spain is completed and the legal entity is ready to start its business activities, the Commercial Code and the Companies Law stipulate that the company is also legally required to record all of its transactions in specific types of accounting documents

The official accounting body in Spain is represented by the Instituto de Auditores-Censores Jurados de Cuentas de Espana, which is responsible with verifying the manner in which commercial entities in this country apply the accounting procedures available here. The accounting system in Spain was modified in 2005, when the country adopted the International Accounting Standards, which became applicable, starting with that year, to listed companies operating in this country. 

The International Accounting Standards (IAS) were implemented in Spain for the purpose of getting in line with the European Union’s directive on how accounting procedures have to be completed at an EU level. The IAS is created and regulated by the International Standard Accounting Board.

Our team of accountants in Spain can advise on the main accounting procedures deriving for the IAS, depending on the type of company investors want to set up here. When opening a company in Spain, from an accounting viewpoint, the legal entity is obliged to perform the following: 

  • obtain accounting books, prior to engaging in any commercial activities;
  • the accounting books have to be brought at a local Mercantile Registry with the purpose of being stamped by the institution;
  • the company must also have a minutes book, but the accounting documents can vary based on the type of company that is registered in Spain;
  • the company should also have a personnel registration book, in which all the company’s employees are registered;
  • the latter document provides a proof on the fact that the employees were registered with the local tax authorities. 

These are the basic accounting documents that have to be obtained prior to engaging in commercial activities in Spain, but once the company starts its operations, additional accounting procedures have to be followed. For example, it is necessary to submit an annual self-assessment tax return, which has to be deposited in specific periods during the financial year. 

As a commercial entity in Spain, it is also legally required to submit corporate tax returns, financial statements (which are comprised of several types of documents that have to be submitted based on the company’s legal entity and annual turnover) and inventories. These documents have to be submitted to the Mercantile Registry and our team of consultants in Spanish company formation can provide personalized advice on this matter.  

Accounting in Spain is organized based on the calendar year, which is the same as the tax year as a general rule. This means that the accounting period must have 12 months and it generally is the same with the calendar year. Still, businesses also have the possibility of opting for a different scheme with regard to their tax base year. Here is an infographic about the accounting services we offer in Spain:

Tax reliefs in Spain

Residents and non-residents in Spain as well as companies registered in this country can benefit from varied tax reliefs. Here are some of them, noting that you can always call our CPA in Spain:

  • Residents in Spain do not pay income tax on revenues from abroad.
  • Specific expenses linked to residency can be deducted.
  • Marital status and number of children are the basis for tax deductions of up to 14%.
  • There is no capital gains tax for the sale of an apartment (especially the home) if they have lived here for at least 2 years out of the last 5.
  • Deducting the costs of interest payments on a mortgage is another valid option.
  • The cost of social security payments can also be deducted.
  • There is no inheritance tax on properties in Spain, owned by foreigners.
  • Gifts valued at more than EUR 6,000 are not levied in Spain.
  • The corporate tax rate can be reduced to 15%, depending on the business sector in which the company in question operates.
  • It is possible to claim a tax credit of up to EUR 5,000 for each employee if it is about creating new jobs in the firm.
  • Reduced VAT applies in Spain (IVA reducido) under certain conditions.

Which businesses benefit from tax relief in Spain?

Sole proprietors and companies with operations in the manufacturing or trading sector can benefit from the tax reliefs mentioned above. It is also valid for residents who receive income from Spanish sources.

What other types of accounting documents should a Spanish company have? 

Besides the types of documents we have presented above, investors have to make sure that they have all the accounting forms that are requested under the applicable legislation. For this purpose, Spanish companies must have a daily book, which records the daily economic activity of a company (this document is provided in a standardized format). 

Other relevant documents are the following: annual accountsbalance sheet, the profit and loss account, and the quarterly balance. It is necessary to know that the company must present these documents in specific formats. More importantly, companies have to keep specific accounting documents for a period ranging from 4 to 6 six years.  

How these documents have to be submitted to the local institutions varies based on the size of the company and its revenues. For this purpose, the procedures for accounting in Spain are simpler in the case of small and medium-sized companies, as they can opt for summary annual accounts. This rule applies to micro-enterprises as well. 

Depending on these coordinates – the revenues of the company and the number of employees, a company will be required to perform an audit, which must always be done by a team of specialists who have obtained a qualification in this profession. The exemption from audit applies if, for a period of two consecutive years, the company has had annual assets with a value of less than EUR 2.85 million and an annual turnover of less than EUR 5.7 million and if it employs less than 50 employees.  

Other than this, all commercial companies must appoint an auditor, and this obligation is also applicable to all listed companies, insurance companies, credit institutions and others; our team of accountants in Spain can provide more details on other entities that need to audit their financial activity.  

Submitting VAT returns in Spain 

As we mentioned at the beginning of the article, one of the accounting requirements in Spain refers to submitting VAT returns. Companies are obliged to obtain a VAT number in certain conditions and when this happens, they must also prepare VAT returns, as per the local law. Our team of accountants in Spain can assist investors with advice on the accounting procedure available in this case; some of the important aspects are presented below: 

  • a Spanish company must submit quarterly VAT returns if its total sales in the previous financial year were of a maximum EUR 6 million;
  • it is compulsory to submit monthly VAT returns if the sales were above EUR 6 million;
  • non-compliance can lead to fines imposed at rates ranging from 20% to 200%;
  • non-compliance can also be imposed with interest fines applicable at the rate of 5%;
  • interest fines can increase up to 20% when the VAT returns are delayed for a period of 1 year. 

Our accountants in Spain can offer more information about VAT returns. 

Customized bookkeeping services in Spain

Accounting and bookkeeping are vital components of the day-to-day management of a Spanish company, which is why you can request the services of our accountants when it comes to preparing monthly, quarterly and annual financial statements. They will also draft any other requested or necessary accounting documents so your company will always be up to date with all the reporting requirements as established by the legislation.

Another important role in the accounting department of a Spanish company is  the human resources – HR and payroll. Many companies hire outsourcing companies to handle payroll and accounting reports from this department. Our agents in Spain can provide you with complete management accounting services related to payroll.

Spanish companies are also required to appoint independent auditors to have their financial records monitored and verified. Our Spanish agents will offer you tailored audit services based on the International Standards on Auditing and on the specific legal requirements for each type of company. For personalized services and prices, you can contact our accountants in Spain.

Forensic accounting in Spain

Investors who want or need to perform in-depth financial auditing of their company’s documents may opt for forensic accounting, which is a procedure that combines the knowledge of several disciplines. Forensic accounting in Spain is performed by specialists who have extensive knowledge in the field of business, accounting and auditing.

Their mission is to combine the techniques used in these domains to provide reliable results which can also be used in the court, in the situation in which an investor is required to provide detailed information on the company’s financial statementsOur team of Spanish lawyers can offer assistance to businessmen who need to start the forensic accounting procedure

The responsibilities of a forensic accountant in Spain 

Forensic accounting is a procedure that is correlated with legal actions regarding fraud or embezzlement, in litigation cases. Investors have to start the forensic accounting procedure when they are requested to provide further details on the company’s financial documents, which may hide various legal or financial issues. 

A forensic accountant will be responsible to analyze the documents of a company, to provide a clear and understandable image of the financial situation the way the financial aspects of the company were carried out by those in charge (if they have followed the applicable legislation); our team of Spanish attorneys can offer more details on this matter. 

The accountant will have to perform the following actions: analyze the financial documents and gather information, create financial applications, useful during the auditing procedure and for the required presentations, establish reports, which will be used in the court, assist in the court and testifying in the court on the results of the audit

Forensic accounting services in Spain 

A financial specialist will keep close contact with the entrepreneurs’ lawyers, to whom he or she can offer detailed information on such important aspects of the company. The forensic accounting procedure can start in the pre-trial stage, in which the accountant will offer an overall image of the current situation. 

What is the legal framework for accounting in Spain? 

In the case of those who want to open a company in Spain as a publicly traded entity, it is necessary to know that, starting with 2005, such companies must prepare consolidated financial statements, as per Regulation (EC) No 1606/2002. Royal Decree 1159/2010 and Royal Decree 1514/2007 also apply the accounting procedures applicable in Spain

Another Decree, the Royal Decree 1515/2007, approved procedures for accounting in Spain under the Spanish GAAP for small and medium-sized companies and micro-companies. All these legal acts were later amended, to introduce new regulations with regards to audit procedures in Spain. This was done under the Royal Decree 602/2016, which implemented the EU Audit Directive 2013/34.

According to the law on accounting in Spain, the obligation to submit financial statements can be completed in the form of simplified financial statements or full annual reports. We have presented in this article some of the entities that are allowed to file simplified forms. 

Those who want to open a company in Spain have to be aware that, in the case in which they have to file the full annual report, such report will contain the following types of documents: general information on the company, the company’s investment report, the director’s report, the resolution of the shareholders meeting, the auditor’s report and the financial statements, which include documents such as the balance sheet, the profit, and loss report or the cash flow statement

In the situation in which the company needs to be audited, the legislation on accounting in Spain stipulates that this activity has to be done only by persons who have obtained a license in this profession (it can be done by a natural person who acts as an auditor or by an auditing firm). 

Spanish Accounting Standards (SAS) and implications in the business climate

The Spanish Accounting Standards or SAS were introduced in 1989, followed by various amendments. The main objective of SAS is to guarantee correct and precise financial position aligning accounts with those of companies in other states. Even though each country has its accounting standards, there are general rules that apply to all companies, regardless of the state where they operate. SAS is considered to be complex because it uses an accrual accounting system instead of a cash accounting system. We advise you to learn more about accounting and bookkeeping in Spain from one of our specialists. We can help you set up a company in Spain and correctly implement all the accounting matters. Our accountant in Barcelona can explain everything you need to know.

Differences between SAS and IFRS

Although SAS aligns with IFRS, there are some significant differences. For example, in Spain, fair value measurements for specific financial tools are used, while IFRS does not accept this. Different depreciation strategies for tangible and intangible assets are used, while IFRS allows the use of the same depreciation for both kinds of assets. Deferred tax assets and liabilities grounded on estimated future taxable profits are allowed in Spain through SAS, while IFRS requires companies to identify deferred tax assets based on actual future taxable profits. We invite you to talk to our accountants in Malaga for more information about the differences between SAS and IFRS, as well as the applicability of the formalities. Our accountant in Marbella will also be at your disposal.

Why ask for our accountants in Spain?

You can contact our English-speaking accountants in Barcelona if you want to develop your business in this city. Our accountant in Barcelona can help you with everything related to accounting, right from the beginning of your business. You can also opt for the experience and professionalism of our accountants in Malaga if your operations take place here. In addition, you have at hand the complete services offered by our accountant in Marbella whenever you intend to develop your business in this city.

Please note that auditors who have gained their experience in the field in other EU countries (or member states of the European Economic Area) are entitled to perform this profession in Spain, only as long as they pass a test on the Spanish audit procedures. Besides accounting services, you can discuss with us about company incorporation in Spain. We invite you to contact our team of accountants in Spain.