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Lawyer for GOLDEN VISA PROGRAM

PORTUGUESE RESIDENCE FOR INVESTMENT ACTIVITY

The Golden Visa program allows citizens from outside the European Union to
invest in Portuguese Territory and consequently obtaining a temporary residence
permit.

Golden visa: Whats is it?

Portugal has, since October 2021, a VISA reserved for non-European Union citizens willing to invest in the local economy. The main goal is to attract foreign investors/capital into the Portuguese Economy.

This VISA program – called Golden Visa (or Golden Residence) – benefits from the fact that its holders have the right to apply – after 5 years – to become a Portuguese Citizen and/or a permanent Portuguese resident.

main benefits

Minimum stay of 7 days/year in Portugal to be eligible for the renewals of the initial validity of 2 years.

Eligibility for the Portuguese citizenship in five years.

Freedom of movements inside the Schengen Area (under certain conditions);

Eligibility for the NHR (Non-Habitual Resident Tax scheme).

MINIMUM INVESTMENT BY TYPE:

USD 282.000 (EURO 250.000€) in Portuguese arts, culture, and heritage;

USD 316.000 (EURO 280.000€) in real estate purchase located in low density and urban regeneration areas;

USD 395.000 (EURO 350.000€) in real estate purchase located in urban regeneration areas;

USD 450.000 (EURO 400.000€) in real estate purchase located in low density areas;

USD 565.000 (EURO 500.000€) in R&D projects, Portuguese companies, Investment Funds for corporate capitalization and real estate purchase;

USD 1.700.000 (EURO 1.500.000) simple capital transfer to a bank located in Portugal;

Creation of, at least, 10 permanent jobs (or 8, if in a low density area);

TRAVEL AND VISA-FREE COUNTRIES

The Golden Visa holder is allowed to freely travel within Europe and, once he/she gets the Portuguese citizenship, becomes holder of the 4th strongest passport in the world.

RIGHTS OF A GOLDEN VISA HOLDER

The Portuguese Golden Visa holder is allowed to work, live, study or simply enjoy our beautiful Portugal.

Maybe you don’t know but, in Portugal, there is free universal healthcare and education. That’s right. If, by any misfortune, you suffer an injury or disease, the National Healthcare will take care of you, free of costs (or charging as low as US$ 18,00).

On the other hand, the public schools and Universities grant all the residents (including the Golden Visa holders) the privilege of developing 15 years of learning (elementary, high school and college), FREE OF CHARGE.

However, and if you prefer, there are several private schools and colleges, with monthly fees as low as USD$ 400,00.

Regarding work, you will be able to work in a Portuguese or foreign company (either presential or remote work), by yourself (entrepreneurship) or start your own company (LLC or Inc.).

FAMILY (RE)UNIFICATION

The main applicant may include all his/her family members, as long as they are financially dependents from him/her. This extension can be done either simultaneously or later. However, you have to bear in mind that the 5 years for the citizenship start counting when the applicant has the visa issued. So, the longer your family members take to start the process, the longer it will take for them to become Portuguese.

The family members eligible to join the main applicant are his/her spouse, children under 18 years old, children between 18 and 26 years old, if unmarried and financially dependent and parents over 65 years old, if financially dependents.

PORTUGUESE PASSPORT

Both the main applicant and his/her dependents may apply for the Portuguese citizenship once they hold the Golden Visa for over 5 years.
Additional requirements are:

  • No outstanding tax payments in Portugal;
  • Clean criminal records from Portugal and from your country of origin (misdemeanors don’t count);
  • Approval in a basic Portuguese language test.

TAX BENEFITS

If you don’t spend more than 183 days per year in Portugal, you will not be considered as a tax resident in Portugal.  However, if you become a tax-resident in Portugal, you will be eligible for the non-habitual residency (NHR) program, according to which you may benefit from the following tax rates for the following 10 years:

  • 0% on crypto, dividends, wealth and most income;
  • 10% on pensions;
  • 20% on freelancing income.

WHAT NATIONALITIES CAN APPLY?

US Citizens shall be aware that:

You may qualify to exclude your foreign earnings from income up to $112,000/year, if you comply with the IRS exceptions.

Any non-European Union/Iceland/Liechtenstein/Norway/Swiss national is eligible for the Golden Visa.

PRE-REQUISITES

  • Minimum 18 years old;
  • Clean criminal record from from Portugal and from your country of origin (misdemeanors don’t count);
  • Eligible investment must be funded by foreign sources.

WHO ARE WE?

We are a Portuguese Law Firm focused on foreign clients and investment attraction to Portugal. Our immigration department is led by a Lawyer enrolled in the Portuguese Bar Association for over 20 years and our team is composed by lawyers, solicitors and paralegals, responsible for several hundreds of Portuguese Visa and citizenship applications.

And, because we are lawyers, we are forbidden, by the Portuguese Bar Association Statutory regulations, to partner and/or to receive any kind of payment/compensation/commission from any funds. This way, you can be sure that we will always and solely defend your own interests, instead of leading you into a specific product, fund or company investment.

Many companies advertise Golden Visa advisory, making you believe that their business is the Golden Visa application assistance. Unfortunately, that is not true. Their main goal is to lead you to invest in a specific investment product/fund, that will be paying a commission/referral.

Some investment funds – mostly linked to the Real Estate business – will offer you, free of charge, the legal assistance on the Golden Visa application. However, you will be assisted by professionals paid the own investment fund. And, let’s say, their exemption and independence is, at least, at risk. The professional paid by the fund will be the professional assisting you in, for instance, due diligence and/or compliance acts. So, the said professional/expert in Golden Visa applications will be performing acts of due diligence, in your name, about a fund that is paying for their services. At least, there is a conflict of interests.

That is why we strongly recommend that you hire a Portuguese Lawyer or Solicitor. These are the only professionals that are legally bound to defend the interests of the person that hires them (and is paying for their work).

That is why you should always suspect of someone that is offering a “visa-in-hand” solution, because, in our opinion, there is a incompatibility between defending your interests and offering a solution that has a product/property involved.

Portuguese Lawyers or Solicitors are legally forbidden to advise/recommend any kind of product/investment.

Did you know that there are renowned Real Estate Agencies that advertise the same property – at different prices – in their US and Portuguese listings? The price at the US website is 30% higher than in the Portuguese listing.

That is why we also help in the negotiations. We can present ourselves before the seller/agent and not reveal the identity/nationality of the potential buyer. This way the foreign citizen will be safe from potential speculation in price due to their country of origin. Also, if both the seller and the agent aren’t aware of the primary goal of the acquisition (eligibility for Golden Visa), they will ignore the financial availability of the potential buyer, making it easier to bargain the asked price.

That is why we cover the following services:

Real Estate Investments:

 

  • Our paralegals will visit the properties at different hours and, if desired, make a videoconference with you from the property;
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  • Perform acts of due diligence to ensure the property is in conditions of being sold/bought, free of onus or pending costs.
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  • Assistance in the negotiations until signing the first commitment agreement and/or the promissory sale and purchase agreement;
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  • Analysis of all documentation pertaining to the property, and accessing of all relevant entries in the Land Registry, Tax Authority and/or the local municipal council;
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  • Receipt and holding of funds in the law firm clients/escrow account (if required);
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  • Drafting (or reviewing) of the promissory purchase and sale agreement;
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  • Drafting (or reviewing) of the final purchase and sale deed;
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  • Registration of acquisition of the property title deed at the Land Registry Office and at the local Tax Office;
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  • Acting on behalf of the owner, with the various utility companies —electricity, gas, water, telephone, cable, etc.;
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  • Acting as depository of all the documents regarding the property own by the client;
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  • Due-diligence on investment funds linked to real estate:Fund solvability in the present
    • Fund solvability in the present
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    • Analysis of the contracts;
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    • Verification of both the surface right and of the binding clause to the entity chosen to explore the property;
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    • Review of the mandatory buyback clause;
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    • Analysis of the fund future solvability to comply with the buyback clause;
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    • General acts of compliance.

 

Contact us to learn more about the services we can provide.

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