Portugal Golden Visa news – you are still in time to apply!
The draft law anticipating the end of the Golden Visa programme has finally become available and brings a reasonable and balanced approach that protects investors.
According to our interpretation of it, applications under the current Golden Visa programme will be accepted until the final Law enters into force; renewals will be converted into residence permits for entrepreneurs but keeping the current rules for minimum permanence in Portugal (7 days/year); and Golden Visa holders are entitled to apply for permanent residency after the 5-year GV program period.
Is Portugal ending the Golden Visa?
We outline below the main points of attention:
- The Golden Visa programme is being terminated, but with effects only as from the day following the publication of the law in the Official Gazette (and not as from 16 February 2023, as previously rumoured). Taking into consideration the usual timeline for Parliamentary discussions, the publication of the law should still take 45 to 60 days, but further delays may occur due to the complexity of the legislation;
- The granting and renewal of Golden Visa applications submitted but still pending at the date of entry into force of the new law, will be processed as residence permit for entrepreneurs but with a minimum required permanence period in Portugal of 7 days/year;
- The termination of the Golden Visa programme will not affect the rights of applicants (and their families) who have already obtained the respective residence permits and the current rules in terms of minimum permanence in Portugal will continue to apply;
- Family reunification requests should continue to be processed even if they are submitted after the date of termination of the programme;
- For the avoidance of doubt, the draft law does not contain any retroactivity effect to applications submitted as of 16 February 2023 - this was a concern triggered by public statements from the Portuguese Prime Minister, but this scenario is now fully discarded;
- New applications for residence permit relating to investments or support for artistic production, recovery or maintenance of cultural heritage will be admitted – the exact terms and conditions are expected to be further detailed in the context of the parliamentary discussions, but this opens a door to further investments and residence permits in this context.
Portugal Golden Visa – what happens now?
The draft law is subject to amendments during the parliamentary discussions and may still foresee slightly different conditions, such as grandfathering rules for certain areas that have shown interest in keeping the Golden Visa program (which is the case of Madeira Island, for example). Nevertheless, this specific part remains uncertain.
In the end, we may say that the news about the death of the Golden Visa were greatly exaggerated, but mainly because of public statements that were not accurate and that are now completely discarded.
The window of opportunity to obtain a Golden Visa in Portugal is closing. Contact us today!
We also remind our clients whose dream is to live in Portugal, that the Golden Visa is far from being the only option: there are other visas (for example, the D1, the D2, the D7, the tech visa or the digital nomad visa), which allow this goal to be achieved. Portugal wants to continue fostering immigration and investment.
Our team is monitoring the parliamentary discussions and will update this article accordingly.
If you are applying for a Golden Visa in Portugal, this is your last chance. If you go ahead today, you can count on our experience and know-how. Contact us!