10 FAQs about submitting your tax return in Portugal

Over the course of our more than 30 years in business, we've dealt with all kinds of situations relating to the submission of the PIT return. So, we thought it would be helpful to compile ten frequently asked questions about submitting a tax return so that you can better understand this tax obligation in Portugal.

What is the PIT?

Personal Income Tax (PIT) is levied on the global income of all tax residents in Portugal. There are six categories of PIT, according to the type of income (labour income, pensions, capital income, among others).  The PIT is a progressive tax, as the tax rates increase as the level of income increases.

1. What are the deadlines for submitting the PIT return?

The PIT tax return must be submitted on any day between 1 April and 30 June of the year following that in which the income is reported.  Thus, the 2024 tax return for 2023 income must be submitted by 30 June 2024.

2. Who may be obliged to submit a personal income tax return?

The following may be obliged to submit an annual personal income tax return:

  • Residents in Portugal, including all their income, including income not obtained in Portugal
  • Non-residents in Portugal, if they have obtained income in Portugal that is not subject to the applicable rates (e.g. property gains)

Non-residents who have only earned income in Portugal subject to withholding tax at the applicable rates (e.g. income from capital) do not need to submit a personal income tax return.

3. How can I submit my personal income tax return?

The tax return is submitted online via the “Portal das Finanças” (the Portuguese online Tax website).

The PIT return can be filled in manually by completing the annexes corresponding to the types of income.

4. What happens if I don't submit my tax return?

If you don't submit your personal income tax return by the deadline, you will be notified by registered letter to submit it within 30 days. After 30 days, the Portuguese Tax Authority (AT) will analyse your tax situation using the information available to it (e.g., receipt invoices issued). After this analysis, an assessment will be issued, which will determine whether tax is payable.

Delays in submitting the tax return are subject to fines that vary according to the delay in meeting the legal deadline. Typically, the fine is greatly reduced if the declaration is submitted within the first 30 days after the deadline.

5. What kind of expenses can be deducted?

The PIT code allows you to deduct expenses for health, education, property costs, homes, general family expenses, and VAT paid in specific sectors, among others.

It is important to keep supporting documentation for all declared expenses. Invoices can be validated online (via the e-fatura website) until 25 February.

6. What is joint taxation and who can benefit from it?

Married taxpayers or those in a non-marital partnership can file a joint personal income tax return, which must include the income of all household members.

This option is not permanent, so you can choose whether to file your tax return individually or jointly every year.

7. What is the deadline for paying the tax due?

If tax is due after your return has been submitted and validated, it can be paid up to 31 August of the year the tax return was submitted.

8 What should I do if I make a mistake after submitting my tax return?

If you discover an error after submitting your tax return, you can submit a replacement return via the Portal das Finanças before the legal deadline.

After the legal deadline, the possibility and deadlines for submitting a substitute tax return must be analysed case-by-case.

9. How can I check the status of my tax return?

You can check the status of your personal income tax return on the online Portal das Finanças in the "Tax Services" section by choosing the "Consult Declaration" option.

10. When can I expect to receive my PIT refund?

Refunds can take a few weeks to be processed, depending on the complexity of the tax return. However, there has been an effort to shorten the deadline for payment of the refund, which is currently 3 to 6 weeks after submitting the tax return.

Do you have any doubts about submitting your PIT return?

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