Steps to register as a freelancer


In the case that some lucrative economic activity is usually carried out directly and personally, It will be necessary for the person responsible to register in the Special Regime for Self-Employed Workers (RETA).

Likewise and subsequently it is required to disclose the variations of your data in the cases that occur, communicating the withdrawal if it is decided to terminate the activity.

The registration will be unique and it does not matter that more than one work related to the RETA is carried out.

We explain in this article the steps or procedures, plus some documentation to handle to develop the self-employment registration process.

High in the Treasury

The primary procedure that must be carried out is to register with the Treasury before starting the activity. For this, the census declaration (models 036 and 037) must be presented, in which the personal data, the activity to which the person will be engaged, the location of the business plus taxes that will have to be paid, will be notified.

On each occasion that these data are changed, the model 036 or 037 with said modifications.

Model 037 It will be a reduced version of the 036 that may be being used by almost all the self-employed. Except for example those that have special VAT regimes or appear in the register of intra-community operations, because they can be presented by all natural persons with an NIF assignment and in which their fiscal address coincides with that of administrative management, provided that they do not are included in the special VAT regimes.

This except the simplified, livestock, agriculture, fishing or equivalence surcharge, nor are they in the monthly refund register (REDEME), that of large companies, or intra-community operators.

At the time of declaring the activity, you will have to choose one of the sections of the (IAE) Economic Activities Tax , which are regulated in Royal Legislative Decree 1175/1990, where extensive lists of both professional and business activities appear.

The normal thing will be that one is free from paying the IAE, it should only be paying in the case of carrying out a billing above one million euros per year. If you are not excluded, you will have to present the model 840/848.

High social security

In 60 days prior to the start of the activity, you must register in the Special Regime for Self-Employed Workers (RETA) of the Social Security. Before 2018, the Security criterion was different: the person had 30 calendar days to make the registration with the RETA viable after being registered with the Treasury.


For this, the TA0521 form will be presented in the Social Security administration with ID "Photocopy" or its equivalent and a photocopy of registration with the Treasury.

For a community of property, you must have a copy of the contract signed between the community partners, and if you are registered as a partner in a society, its constitution document (original and copy).

For this, form TA0521 will have to be presented in one of the Social Security administrations together with a photocopy of the DNI or equivalent and a photocopy of the registration with the Treasury.

When a person is registered, their contribution base and coverage will be defined by what they will do.

Considering the new regulations on self-employment unemployment, it could be possible to contribute for contingencies of work accidents and occupational diseases, also for unemployment, although this would be 2,2% more than the contribution.

In higher risk activities, for example, the construction sector, it will be mandatory to pay for contingencies of work accidents, also for occupational diseases.

Registration with the Town Hall

There will be a permit from the City Council to be able to proceed with the opening of a premises in which an economic activity will be carried out. The opening license is this authorization. In general, the interested party will have to be sent to develop the management to the urban planning department or area.

The cost of this license will be calculated specifically for a local taking into account three factors: Size of the premises in question, type of activity to be developed and the commercial relevance of the street.

In many city councils, due to the delay that the approval of licenses can present, it usually begins to work once the application has been submitted. Having primarily ensured the interested party that he meets all the necessary requirements for the activity in question to be carried out, otherwise the person will be forced to close, or correct the deficiencies that are detected, with the possibility of receiving some type of fine.

To be able to develop refurbishment works or improve a premises, a Works License will be necessary, which is a municipal permit. Usually it will be processed before the urban planning department

Registration with the Labor Organizations


You will have the obligation to notify the competent labor authority, whether the opening, installation, transfer or expansion of work centers; usually to the labor department of the Ministry of Employment or Labor of the Autonomous Community in question.

This obligation will extend to the resumption of activity after relevant alterations, extensions or transformations. There will be a term of 30 days for this, being necessary to present data and information related to the work center and business staff.

The Visiting Book was eliminated from September - 2016, which existed and was replaced by written procedures and notifications, preferably by electronic means, which labor inspectors can carry out when visiting companies.

Since July - 2015 this procedure was no longer valid for new self-employed, the same for companies.

Registration in Self-Employed with Flat Rate

It is possible to request from the beginning of 2018 the new flat rate for freelancers, this of 50 euros for 12 months, unlike the previous 6 months, with new conditions to request it.

This rate is a discount on the fee that the self-employed person will have to pay in their first years of activity. Instead of the 275 euros minimum fee, with the Flat Rate you will be paying only 12 euros during the first 50 months.  

The worker in this way may be saving more than 2.500 euros in Social Security contributions, considering himself and having the assistance and guarantees as if he were quoting with the normal rate.

This registration process at this rate will have two parts: Registration with the Tax Agency and then with the General Treasury of the Social Security.

Procedures at the hacienda

This type of procedure will be carried out at the offices of the Tax Agency or from the internet (with digital certificate or electronic DNI).

Using the "census registration", the Tax Agency will be notified that the professional activity in question will be starting.

It will be a statement where particular data of the company or the self-employed will be reflected, specifying the activity to be carried out, specificities regarding the location of the business, professional activity, plus the tax regime that is aspired, whether general or simplified.

There will be two options based on whether the activity will be carried out as a self-employed person, that is, a natural person or as a legal person, based on this, the appropriate census declaration will be presented.  

Procedures "Social Security"


These procedures will be carried out before the (TGSS), General Treasury of the Social Security.

When both the census certificate and the registration in the Economic Activities Tax have been obtained, the affiliation and registration in the (RETA) Special Regime for Self-Employed Workers will proceed.

This procedure will be carried out at the General Treasury of Social Security or via the Internet (digital certificate or electronic DNI required)

The model TA 0521, which exists with different specifications depending on the specific conditions of the autonomous.

There are limitations to access this flat rate,  It is necessary to understand that not all those registered with the RETA will be able to benefit from it.

When you proceed to register, documents will be presented, both photocopies and originals with which the veracity of the same will be verified.


  • Registration in the Economic Activities Tax, model 840
  • DNI or NIE
  • Registration in the professional census, model 037

If you have been working for someone else before, you must also present the Social Security membership card.

Those people who must be registered to carry out the activity, will have to present the Certificate of the professional association.

The term to be requesting registration in the RETA will be 30 days from the communication regarding the start of the activity to the Tax Agency, by means of registration in the professional census.  The payment of the self-employed fee will be monthly through direct debit.

Register Online

The PAE (Points of Attention to the Entrepreneur), certified by the Ministry of Economy and Industry They are capable of processing via the internet the registration of a self-employed person through the DUE (Unique Electronic Document), which will simplify the management, being able to present the registration online at the same time in the Treasury and Social Security.



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