Residence & Citizenship

Portugal

Portugal’s “Golden Visa” is the perfect route to Portugal’s golden shores. Due to its flexibility and numerous benefits, this programme is proving to be one of the most popular programmes in Europe.

On top of that, Portugal also offers a Non-Habitual Residents Programme to individuals who become tax resident in Portugal. This allows them to enjoy a special personal tax exemption on almost all foreign source income, over a 10 year period.

Portugal detail

Portuguese Programmes

Please click into the relevant programme(s) below to view the benefits of each, the financial obligations and other criteria that might apply:

Programmes – Benefits & Criteria

Portugal

Portugal Golden Visa

The Portugal Non-Habitual Residents Regime

  • Benefits
  • Financial/Other Obligations
  • Additional Criteria

Portugal Golden Visa

The Portuguese Golden Visa enables non-EU residents not only to be resident in Portugal, but also to move freely within the Schengen Zone.

Individuals who have been resident in Portugal for 5 years can apply for permanent residence. This is usually granted, if they can demonstrate that they have held a residence visa for the last 5 years. At the end of the 5th year of being classified as resident in Portugal an individual can apply for Portuguese nationality and therefore a Portuguese passport.

Further benefits include:

  • Settlement in the EU.
  • Visa-free travel to approximately 170 countries, including free movement within the Schengen Zone (26 European countries).
  • Minimal residence requirements of only seven days in the first year and fourteen days in the subsequent two year periods. It is therefore possible to benefit from the Golden Visa programme without becoming tax resident.
  • Individuals that choose to become tax resident in Portugal can benefit from the Non-Habitual Residents Programme (it is possible for non-EU individuals to apply to the two schemes simultaneously).

Portugal Golden Visa

In order to qualify for a Golden Visa an individual must meet and maintain, for at least 5 years, one of the following investment options:

    • Investment of at least €1.5 million in Portugal (deposit in a bank account, or shares or quotas in a company).
      OR
    • A minimum €250,000 investment in an artistic production or in support of the arts.
      OR
    • A minimum €500,000 investment in scientific research activities.
      OR
    • A minimum €500,000 investment in the units of investment funds or venture capital funds which provide capital to companies. The investment must be made for a minimum of 5 years and 60% of the investment must be placed in commercial companies where the head office is located in Portugal.
      OR
    • Acquisition of real estate with a value of at least €500,000 or €350,000 in a property that is at least 30 years old which will be refurbished or located in urban rehabilitation area, for properties licenced for commercial or services.
      OR
    • Acquisition of real estate with a value of at least €400,000 or €280,000 in a property that is at least 30 years old which will be refurbished or located in urban rehabilitation area for properties located in a low-density area.
      OR
    • The creation of at least 10 jobs (temporary work contracts are eligible and the worker does not have to live in Portugal as long as social security is paid there
      OR
    • €500,000 investment in the incorporation of a new Portuguese company, creating a minimum of 5 permanent jobs.
      OR
    • €350,000 additional share capital investment in an existing Portuguese
      OR
    • €200,000 investment in a Portuguese company, with an Economic Recovery Plan in place.
      OR
    • €350,000 investment in funds to provide additional capital to a Portuguese company, with an Economic Recovery Plan in place.

Portugal Golden Visa

Minimum Stay Requirements in Portugal:

  • 7 days in the first year.
  • 14 days in the subsequent periods of two years (i.e. years 2-3 and 4-5).

In order to obtain Portuguese nationality an individual must provide the following:

  • A copy of an existing Portuguese Residency Card.
  • A declaration issued by the Portuguese authorities stating that an individual has been resident in Portugal for the past 6 years.
  • A Portuguese Criminal Record Check.
  • A Criminal Record Check from the individual’s country of origin, duly translated and certified by the Portuguese Consulate and Apostilled.
  • Proof that the individual has taken the official Portuguese language test for foreigners.
  • Benefits
  • Financial/Other Obligations
  • Additional Criteria

The Portugal Non-Habitual Residents Regime

The Non-Habitual Residents Programme is available to EU and non-EU individuals who become resident for tax purposes in Portugal, provided they have not been resident in Portugal for the previous five years.

Benefits:

  • Individuals can enjoy non-habitual status for a ten year period.
  • There are tax exemptions on foreign-source income when certain conditions are met (this includes income from pensions, dividends, work and provision of services, and royalties and interest, for ten consecutive years).
  • Pensions will be taxed at the rate of 10%.
  • Income derived from employment or independent personal services in Portugal is taxed at a special flat rate of 20% for ten consecutive years, as above.
  • 28% flat rate of withholding tax on interest, dividends and/or capital gains relating to Portuguese source income.
  • No capital gains on the sale of a permanent residence in Portugal as long as the gains are re-invested in another permanent residence in Portugal or another EU or EEA country.

The Portugal Non-Habitual Residents Regime

Portuguese employment income must be derived from high value-added activities of a scientific, artistic or technical nature.

The Portugal Non-Habitual Residents Regime

Individuals can enjoy non-habitual status for a ten year period, after which they will be taxed under the standard personal income tax rules in Portugal.

Download Full List of Programmes – Benefits & Criteria (PDF)


Living in Portugal

Located in the south west of mainland Europe, Portugal is easily accessible in terms of travel to and from the rest of the world. The two islands of the Azores and Madeira are also autonomous regions of Portugal and, like the mainland, offers fantastic weather, a relaxed lifestyle, cosmopolitan cities and stunning coastlines.

The Golden Visa and the Non-Habitual Residents Programme (NHR)

If you are interested in Portugal’s Golden Visa, there are plenty of choices of investment routes to meet the obligations, from direct investment into property, to investing in a Portuguese Venture Capital Fund.

The main investment routes to qualify for a Golden Visa are:

Investment of at least €1 million in Portugal (deposit in a bank account, or shares, or quotas in a company or companies); OR

Acquisition of real estate with a value of at least €500,000; OR

The creation of at least 10 jobs (temporary work contracts are eligible and the worker does not have to live in Portugal as long as social security is paid there).

Investing in a Venture Capital Fund requires an investment of at least €350,000 with the objective of providing capital for companies in Portugal.

The capital must be retained for a minimum of 5 years and at least 60% of the investment must be made in commercial properties, with a head office in Portugal. The good news is this is a lower investment in terms of the amount required and it could offer a higher return on the investment long-term.

There are a number of other benefits available under this route and more information can be found here: Obtaining a Golden Visa by Investing in a Portuguese Venture Capital Fund

At the same time as applying for a Golden Visa, you can simultaneously apply for the Non-Habitual Residents Programme, to enjoy the benefits of both.

The Non-Habituals Residents Programme is available to EU and non-EU citizens who become tax resident in Portugal, provided they have not been resident in Portugal for the previous 5 years. They can enjoy non-habitual status for 10 years, whereby income derived from employment or independent personal services (from a domestic source) is taxed at a special flat rate of 20%, provided the income is from high value-added activities or a scientific, artistic or technical nature. A tax exemption may apply to income derived from a foreign source.

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