The following are questions frequently asked about the Portuguese
golden visa/citizenship program. If you don't find your answers,
please contact us at your convenience.
Q: What is the "Portugal Golden Residence Permit"?
A: In October of 2012 Portugal introduced a new type of visa and
residence permit for investors known as the "Golden Residence Programme".
The essential purpose of this new law is to facilitate foreign investments
in Portugal made by individuals that are not citizens of the European
Q: What are the benefits of this residence by investment
A: The golden residence visa allows the successful applicant to
travel freely and without restrictions along the “Schengen Area“
of Europe: Spain, France, Germany, Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Estonia,
Finland, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Czech
Republic, Liechtenstein, Luxemburg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway,
Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Slovakia, Sweden and Switzerland. This
makes it a particularly attractive program for business people.
Applicants may file for Portuguese/European citizenship after six
years of residency if desired.
Further, the residence permit grants the holder the right to work
(independently or under working contract), the right to an education,
access to the public health system and access to the courts.
The Portuguese (European) citizenship further offers:
• Visa free travel to over 160 countries, including the USA
• Retirement in a safe country with a warm climate
• A better education for the applicant’s children
• A better quality of life for the family
• Personal security
• Tax advantages
• Freedom associated with having multiple passports
Q: What is the minimum investment required to obtain the
"Golden Residence Permit"?
A: To apply for a Golden Residence Permit, a foreign citizen must
invest for a minimum of six years under one of three investment
A. The acquisition of real estate with a minimum value of EUR
B. The transfer of capital with a minimum value of EUR 1 million;
C. The creation of at least 10 new jobs registered with the social
The applicant must choose one of these three investment options
at the beginning of the application process.
If selecting the real estate option, the investment cannot be financed
through a loan/mortgage - it must be a cash investment. Further,
the investment must have been made after 8/10/2012 which is the
date on which the law became effective. Real estate purchases prior
to this date cannot be applied.
If selecting the capital transfer option, the funds are to
be held in a financial entity authorized to operate in Portugal.
We can assist you with opening the required bank accounts.
Q: What type of real estate can I invest in?
A: Your are free to select whichever property you wish to purchase;
residential, commercial or land. Your investment can be in one property
or a portfolio of multiple properties as long as the minimum investment
is met. The investment may be structured as a rental property, allowing
you to stay the required average of seven days per year in your
property while renting it out and earning income during your absence.
Q: Can you help me find real estate in Portugal?
A: Yes. We are associated with several licensed real estate agencies
in Portugal and would be happy to help you find your ideal property.
Please use our contact
form for a free consultation.
Q: Once I obtain the visa, do I need to travel to Portugal
for a minimum number of days during the year?
A: Yes, the program requires a minimum stay of only seven days per
year, on average. Specifically; the first year minimum stay is seven
days. The minimum stay during the second residency period (Years
2 and 3) is a total of 14 days (consecutive or non-sequential).
The minimum stay during the third residency period (Years 4 and
5) is also a total of 14 days (consecutive or non-sequential).
Q: Once I want to apply for citizenship, do I need to move
to Portugal or live in Portugal for a minimum number of days during
A: No. Once citizenship is granted, there are no residency requirements.
Q: Will the visa also include my family?
A: Yes, your spouse and children under 18 can be added at the same
time as the initial application, or anytime thereafter.
Q: How long does the application process take?
A: The application takes approximately two months to process after
all documentation has been filed and the required investment is
Q: How long can I stay in Portugal with my golden visa?
A: The Golden Residence Permit is valid for a period of one
year after issue and renewable for two subsequent periods of two
years, resulting in a total of five years. There is then an option
of another one year extension, and after residence in Portugal for
six years, it is possible to file for citizenship.
Q: Does the Golden Residence Permit authorize me to work?
A: Yes. The Golden Residence Permit authorizes you to live and work
Q: Can I keep my tax residence outside Portugal?
A: Personal taxation for non-residents on Portuguese-sourced
employment and pension income is charged at a preferential
rate of 25%, although interest and rental income, dividends and
capital gains are taxed at 28%.
Income derived from a foreign source and relating
to employment income, pension income and business and professional
income can be subject to exemption. Portugal does not apply a wealth
tax. There is no tax on gifts or inheritances between parents, children
Q: What is the difference between the EU immigration by
investment program offered by Portugal versus the programs of Bulgaria,
Malta, Cyprus, or Spain?
A: The Portuguese Golden Residence Permit program requires
an investment of EUR 350,000 in real estate, or the transfer of
1 Million Euro, or the creation of 10 new jobs in Portugal. After
six years of Portuguese residency, citizenship can be applied for.
Citizenship by Investment Program of Bulgaria provides the applicant
with several investment options starting at EUR 185,000 for European
citizenship and passport after five years in residency status. The
"fast track option" starts at EUR 270,000 and shortens this period
to only 18 months, which makes this program one of the fastest programs
Individual Investor Program of Malta provides the applicant
with European citizenship in return for a non-refundable donation
to the Maltese government in the amount of EUR 650,000 plus a EUR
150,000 investment in approved securities and an investment in real
estate. The IIP application process can take between six months
and two years to complete.
by Investment Program of Cyprus provides the applicant with
several investment options starting at EUR 2,0 million for immediate
European citizenship and passport. The entire process can be as
fast as three months or less if choosing the real estate investment
Spanish Golden Visa requires a EUR 500,000 minimum investment
in real estate, or a 1 Million Euro asset transfer, or a 2 Million
Euro securities investment, or the creation of a new government-approved
business project in return for Spanish residency. After 10 years
of residency the applicant may file for citizenship.
Citizenship by investment programs outside of the EU include those
offered by Canada, the United States of America as well as the Caribbean
nations of Antigua & Barbuda and St. Kitts & Nevis:
offers several residency by investment options, leading to citizenship
if desired, starting at CAD 200,000.
States EB-5 Program leads to permanent residency status and
citizenship in the United States for a minimum investment of US-Dollar
500,000 in a commercial enterprise in the U.S. that generates at
least 10 jobs for Americans. After six years as a permanent resident
the investor may apply for U.S. citizenship.
Q: What does "Schengen Area" mean?
A: The Portuguese Residency Permit allows you to travel without
restrictions across the "Schengen Area" of the European Union. The
Schengen Area is a group of 26 European countries that have abolished
passport and immigration controls at their common borders. It functions
as a single country for international travel purposes, with a common
visa policy. Source:
Q: After I am granted citizenship and receive a Portuguese
passport, will I be able to travel to the United States with my
A: Yes. The Portuguese passport will allow you to travel to the
U.S. under the visa waiver program which allows citizens of participating
countries to travel to the United States without a visa for stays
of 90 days or less. Source: