The application request must be filed online. The Serviço de Fronteiras e Estrangeiros (SEF) will approve your request and invite you for an interview.
Usually, the application is filed by a lawyer. It can take up to 5 months for approval.
Theoretically, you can do your application on your one but I don’t recommend that if you are not familiar with the Portuguese language. The legal fees are not insignificant but much cheaper than making some formal errors, wrong investments and having the risk of being rejected. Expect to pay around 30’000 EUR all-in legal expenses to a large international law firm for all the Golden Visa Portugal family members. With us, the legal fees are included in our all-inclusive pricing. We work and cooperate with the leader of the industry.
A good alternative is hiring an independent English speaking lawyer specialized in Portugal immigration law, real estate and Golden Visa. If you need help with a fair, competent and independent Portuguese lawyer, I am delighted to refer you to a specialist. The price will likely be more competitive and you can expect a better and more personal support.
After the approval, you have to pay an approval fee of 5’274.40 EUR (each applicant) and within 20 days you will receive Residency Card valid for 1 year.
The Residency Card gives you visa-free access to the Schengen countries. You have to spend at least 7 days during the first year in Portugal. One month before your Residency Card will expire; you need to pass a Renewal Process. The renewal process is consisting of retaking biometric data and paying a fee of 2637.20 EUR for each applicant, plus minor bureaucratic fees.
Year 2 – 3
The new Residency Card is valid for 2 years. During this period, you need to be in Portugal for 14 days. Before the end of the 3 years period, there is a renewal process.
Year 4 – 5
You will become a new Residency Card valid for 2 years. Again, you have to stay in Portugal for at least 14 days, consecutive or interrupted.
After the end of the fifth year, you can apply for permanent residency followed by Citizenship.
Let me give you an important Update.
According to the recent new law entered into force a few months ago in Portugal, you receive Citizenship after 5 years only (not 6 years at it was before).
After 5 years, you are entitled to the Portuguese Citizenship with European Union Passport.