December 18, 2020 - Comments Off on Portuguese Nationality

Portuguese Nationality

The amendments to the Law of Nationality have now been formally approved by Parliament and ratified by the President and are effective since 11 th November 2020.

One of the main changes is related to nationality for children born in Portugal. In accordance with the new terms of the law, Portuguese nationality by origin is obtained by children born in Portugal provided that at least one of the parents is a legal resident of Portugal for at least one year. This change is a reduction of the minimum residency of parents from two years to just one year.

In addition, the amendments also establish the possibility of obtaining Portuguese citizenship to any foreign citizens who have a Portuguese second degree ancestor (i.e. grandparent) via declaration attesting such intention and proving the effective connection to the Portuguese community. This connection is confirmed simply by showing sufficient knowledge of the Portuguese language and absence of criminal activities or conviction.

It should also be noted that the Public Authorities are no longer able to oppose to the application for nationality on the grounds of absence of the effective connection to Portugal for cases of marriage or common law partnership that has lasted for more than 6 years or if the couple has common children of Portuguese nationality.

Edge International Lawyers
December 2020

December 18, 2020 - Comments Off on The new powers of judges to establish the alternate residency of the child with both parents in case of divorce, judicial separation of people and assets or invalidity of marriage

The new powers of judges to establish the alternate residency of the child with both parents in case of divorce, judicial separation of people and assets or invalidity of marriage

In an attempt to better lay in writing what was already the practice of some Family Courts in Portugal, the law has been expressly changed to foresee the cases where judges can now decree the alternate residency of the child with both parents.

Up until now, when decreeing the child’s residency and visitation rights, the court should decide in accordance with the former’s superior interest, but also take into account all relevant circumstances of the case, such as the possible existence of an agreement between the parents and the availability showed by them to promote frequent relations of the child with the other parent.

Now, the court can determine the alternate residency of the child with both parents, even if the same do not agree to this, should the court decide that it is in the child’s superior interest. It is also clarified that the alternate residency of the child with both parents does not prevent the possibility of one of the parents having to pay maintenance to the other. This will be more evident when there is a substantial difference between the income of each parent, with payment of maintenance being a way to ensure that the child maintains his/her standard of living up until now. It is also expressly mentioned that the court must hear the child before making a decision on any matters regarding parental responsibilities,
something which was not a mandatory requirement up until now.

Edge International Lawyers
December 2020

October 19, 2020 - Comments Off on Residency for holders of Passive Income

Residency for holders of Passive Income

For many years now that Portugal has implemented friendly immigration policies, granting residency rights to Non-Eu/ EEA/Swiss citizens who wish to study, work, trade, invest or enjoy retirement in Portugal.

On this topic, one option for Non-Eu/ EEA/Swiss citizens who wish to relocate into Portugal is to show sufficient and regular net passive income (pension, rental, interest, dividend or intellectual property income). This way of residency is commonly referred to as “D7 Visa” or “Passive Income Visa”.

Unlike the other ways of residency referred above, this is the only option in which the Applicant does not have to create, beforehand and within Portugal, the necessary conditions for the residency permit to be granted – it does not require a prior enrolment, employment, company incorporation or capital/property investment. The fact that the
Applicant holds in his country regular passive income of a certain amount is sufficient
to entitle him/her to residency in Portugal.

The application for this way of residency starts with an application at the Embassy/Consulate where the Applicant has residency, which will result in a residency
visa. Under this visa, the Applicant will then have to come to Portugal to switch his/her
visa for a Residency Permit, which will initially be granted for 2 years, with the
possibility of renewal within the same passive income requirements.

The “Passive Income Visa” offers the same social and professional benefits to its
holders as the Portuguese citizens enjoy, such as family reunion, visa-free entry and
circulation within the Schengen Area, free healthcare and education, the freedom to
study and work in Portugal, protection in unemployment and applying for the Non-
Habitual Resident tax benefits regime.

October 2020

October 19, 2020 - Comments Off on Reorganization of work after 6 th October

Reorganization of work after 6 th October

After several months of pandemic and with the return of part of the population to presencial work, it seemed inevitable the adoption of measures to prevent, contain and mitigate the transmission of the virus at work.

As a result, DL no. 79-A/2020 of 1st October came into force on the 6th October 2020 and applies to companies in which workplaces 50 or more employees work.
The logic is that in the private sector, as is already the case in the Public Administration, the employer organizes working time at off-peak times for employees at the workplace, in order to avoid the concentration of people, not only at peak hours, but throughout
presencial work.

Thus, it has been established that the time-lag intervals should be set at a minimum of 30 minutes and maximum of one hour. In order to implement the time-lag organization, the employer can now unilaterally change working hours up to a maximum of one hour, unless the employee can claim serious damage.

However, the emphasis is on stable working hours, the employer being limited to one possible change per week, not exceeding the maximum number of working hours or changing the working type.

Certain categories of employees, due to their greater vulnerability, are exempted from this regime and do not have to invoke serious damage. This group of employees includes pregnant women, women who have recently given birth or are breastfeeding, minors, employees with reduced working capacity, handicap/chronic illness and employees who are in charge of children under 12 years of age or with handicap/chronic illness.
It is also envisaged that the employer should set up stable teams so that the same employees have contact with each other in kind of "bubbles" and establishing breaks for rest and alternate meals in the workplace.
In any case and regardless of the schemes described, preference should be given to teleworking whenever the nature of the activity allows for it (as so far).

To the extent that physical distance is impossible, the employer should promote the use of appropriate health and safety equipment.
With regard to temporary work and the provision of services, it is also the responsibility of the user enterprise or the enterprise receiving the services provided to adopt the measures of time-lags and changes in schedules.
These measures shall remain in force at least until 31 March 2021, depending on the evolution of the pandemic.

Employment Department
2nd October 2020

October 19, 2020 - Comments Off on Brelcome to Portugal: Brexit and the NHR Programme

Brelcome to Portugal: Brexit and the NHR Programme

In the context of the global pandemic, lifestyle has increasingly come into the focus. For many, Portugal has a triple A+ lifestyle rating, as well as being the 7th most democratic country in the world for 2020 (in 200 countries) and 3 rd most secure country according to the Global Peace Index. As a result, people from all around the world feel safe to move to
Portugal, in pursuit of a higher quality of life, with an added benefit of securing tax efficiency through the Non Habitual Residency Programme (NHR).

Qualifying as a NHR and maintaining this status for 10 years is relatively straight forward by way of registration as a Portuguese tax resident, not having been a tax resident in the previous 5 years. However, becoming a Portuguese NHR does not necessarily grant a complete tax exemption and therefore specific tax advice should be sought before applying.

The NHR programme is not country-specific, in the sense that it relies on the extensive
network of Double Taxation Agreements which Portugal has signed with the UK and other countries. As a result, British Citizens will continue to benefit from the programme after the end of the transition period in the same way that other third country nationals currently benefit.

However, as negotiations evolve, the possibility of a no deal Brexit comes sharper into
focus, and certain practical issues, such as the provision of banking services by UK
licensed banks start to become a reality. According to The Sunday Times, Lloyds, Barclays
and Coutts have already informed their clients of the situation, saying their accounts will be
closed at 11pm on December 31 st . Lloyds bank was the first to confirm that they will be
withdrawing their service from Holland, Slovakia, Germany, Ireland, Italy and Portugal,
affecting more than 13,000 British Citizens living in these countries. For the time being, two
other major UK banks, NatWest and Santander, have not yet decided to close customers’
accounts, but are however considering their options.

Nonetheless and facing Brexit, a growing number of British Nationals are choosing to
become NHR as Portugal becomes more than ever a country with growing opportunities for
successful investments. Existing NHRs are securing new banking solutions.

For instance, two Portuguese cities are ranked by Forbes Magazine, for the second consecutive year, Best European cities to invest in for 2019 and 2020, with areas of growth potential and gains, especially in the Real Estate sector. Last year’s list had Lisbon as a
great city to invest in a second home, however this year’s best city is Porto, where prices are 30% lower than Lisbon, with an average sales price in August 2020 of €306,060.

EDGE continues to provide substantially more legal assistance than simply making the
NHR application on the client’s behalf. Our experienced team assists the client each step of
the way, also providing Brexit solutions, including the establishment of residency rights prior to the end of the transition period. EDGE can provide full assistance to British nationals
concerned about Brexit, whether in relation to British nationals living in Portugal, British
nationals considering moving to Portugal pre-Brexit and British nationals moving after

Edge International Lawyers
October 2020

July 31, 2020 - Comments Off on EDGE WEBINAR | Applying for the Non-Habitual Residency programme in Portugal’s Clean&Safe environment

EDGE WEBINAR | Applying for the Non-Habitual Residency programme in Portugal’s Clean&Safe environment

Tuesday 4 th August 2020, 11am

After a series of successful Webinars, we are very pleased to announce the next in our Webinar series: “Applying for the Non-Habitual Residency programme in Portugal’s Clean&Safe environment”, in partnership with the Portuguese Chamber of Commerce in UK, which will take place on Tuesday 4th August 2020, at 11am (UK Time), via Zoom.

Are you wondering how to plan your move to Portugal and what you need to plan for? This webinar will contain all the answers you need on the Non-Habitual Residency Programme (NHR), one of the most efficient tax programmes available, and how Portugal’s lifestyle has attracted a diversity of individuals to Portugal. Forbes puts Portugal at the top of the list of countries to live and retire overseas post COVID-19, especially due to important factors like the country’s healthcare system, healthy living, language, long-lasting sunshine and safety, being ranked by Global Peace Index as one of the top 3 safest countries in the world for 2020.

If you wish to find out more about why Portugal continues trending as a Clean&Safe country to live and invest, especially through NHR and Golden Visa Programmes, and what might or might not change after Brexit, don’t miss this opportunity. Join us and hear all about real-life experiences regarding NHR Programmes and application process, and how Portugal continues to be a highly attractive country with government services that adapt as quickly and innovatively as possible to this #PostCovidWorld, with measures like the Clean&Safe campaign, and the Portuguese Health Passport.

Register here, and take the chance to hear from one of our Senior Partners, Geoffrey Graham, introduced by Christina Hippisley, General Manager at the Portuguese Chamber of Commerce in the UK.

We also encourage participants to send their questions prior to the webinar to

Further information will be available on and

SAVE THE DATE: Tuesday, 4th August 2020, 11am (UK Time)

July 30, 2020 - Comments Off on Changes to the law of nationality

Changes to the law of nationality

The Portuguese parliament has approved on 23 rd July the amendments to the Law of
Nationality - Law 37/81 of 3 rd October. These amendments simplify the process for
obtaining Portuguese nationality by children of holders of residency permits,
grandchildren and for spouses of Portuguese citizens.

One of the main changes to the law is the one that applies to children born in Portugal
from parents that hold residency permits. In this respect, it has now been established
that it is sufficient for children born in Portugal to obtain direct Portuguese citizenship if
just one of the parents holds a residency permit for one year only.

Another changes that has been approved is related to spouses of Portuguese citizens.
Previously, the law established that a spouse could apply for Portuguese citizenship
after 3 years or marriage or civil union and if there was an effective connection to the
country. With the amendments that have now been approved, the minimum period of 3
years is waived in case the couple has common children of Portuguese nationality.

In addition, the Public Prosecutor’s office can no longer oppose to the application for
nationality on the grounds of absence of the effective connection to the country in case
the marriage has lasted for more than 6 years or in case the couple has common
children of Portuguese nationality.

Finally, regarding grandchildren, ie the second-degree descendants in straight line, the need
to show an effective connection to Portugal is now simply proven through sufficient
knowledge of the Portuguese language. This means that it is no longer necessary to provide
evidence of relevant ties to Portugal and existence of regular contacts with the country.

Edge International Lawyers
July 2020

July 29, 2020 - Comments Off on Flights to Portugal – New Measures

Flights to Portugal – New Measures

The Portuguese government has just released an update to the regulations and restrictions applicable for flights to and from Portugal. This update follows the recommendations for the EU on flights and travel.

The new measures are divided between three main groups of travelers:
The first group includes all countries of the EU and some non-EU countries, including
Australia, Canada, China and a few others. For this first group access to Portugal is totally free and passengers can enter Portugal without any restrictions.

The second group includes travelers from all other countries. For these, it is mandatory to
have a negative Covid-19 test result done within a maximum of 72 hours before the date of
departure. In addition, travelling is limited to essential reasons (professional, study, family
reunion, health or humanitarian reasons) and for the return of citizens or residents of Portugal.

The last group applies to flights for the return of Portuguese citizens or flights from Portuguese peaking African countries where it is hard to secure tests before departure. In these cases, passengers will have to carry out a test on arrival, either at the airport or in a facility indicated by the authorities.

Edge International Lawyers
July 2020

July 7, 2020 - Comments Off on Travel Restrictions Updated in Portugal and Europe

Travel Restrictions Updated in Portugal and Europe

In the midst of the COVID-19 global pandemic and the consequent travel restrictions measures implemented worldwide, the European Commission has issued on 30th June 2020 recommendations to the member states of the European States with regards to air travelling within the European Union/Schengen Area and with third country states, in the direction of lifting the existing restrictions of travelling within member states as well as easing the existing restrictions to selected non-EU countries.

Consequently, the Portuguese Government has issued Decree 3427-A/2020, in which the recommendations of the European Commission for air travel within the European Union/Schengen Area and the United Kingdom have been fully adopted. Additionally, the Decree has also removed the existing air travel restrictions to the following countries: Argelia, Canada, South Korea, Morocco, Tunisia and China, subject, however, to the reciprocity of these countries with flights from Portugal.

The Portuguese Government has also created exceptions for flights coming from Portuguese speaking countries as well as from the United States of America.  Passengers from these countries will be allowed in case of essential trips, which include, travellers that are European Union nationals or holders of Residency Permits in Portugal, or the ones for professional, studies, family reunion, health and humanitarian related reasons.

In this respect, such travellers will have to show a negative Covid-19 test carried out in the last 72 hours before departure. Those travelling who are Portuguese Citizens or holders of Residency Permits in Portugal and that did not5 present such test on departure shall be submitted to a Covid-19 test upon arrival and at their own expense.

The policies set forth in the Decree 3427-A/2020 will be in force from 1st to 15th July and will be monitored closely and adapted in accordance to the evaluation of the epidemiologic situation.

Edge International Lawyers
July 2020

July 7, 2020 - Comments Off on Chinese National security law sparks even more demand in Hong Kong for Golden Visa

Chinese National security law sparks even more demand in Hong Kong for Golden Visa

The national security law for Hong Kong was passed last Tuesday by the Chinese Authorities amid international criticism and global concern. Such law prohibits acts of secession, subversion, terrorism and collusion with foreign forces and establishes severe penalties for those found guilty of breaking the law.

The passing of such law comes at a time when the interest from Hong Kong residents in the Portuguese Golden Visa programme has been increasing significantly.  Recently, the General Consulate of Portugal in Macau registered a very relevant increase in the number of requests from HK residents that are looking to invest and even move to Portugal.

The Portuguese Consul Paulo Cunha-Alves mentioned that the growth has already taken place "for a long time, basically since June last year", as Hong Kong recorded major pro-democracy demonstrations, which were violent and with great social, financial and economic impact.

The significant rise of interest in Portugal by HK residents has also been noticed and mentioned by multiple people from different sectors in Portugal, from developers and real estate agents, to lawyers, people in banking and many others.

In fact, despite the pandemic, according to the official statistics of the Portuguese Immigration Office, in May the investment through the Golden Visa almost tripled (192%) in comparison to the same month of the previous year, to € 146 million. In addition, May has recorded the highest monthly amount of investment raised since March 2017.

The Portuguese Golden Visa has always been looked at by HK residents as an extremely attractive residency by investment option and the instability in HK has made the interest increase even more.  In addition, Portugal is globally been considered as one of the best positioned countries for the “post-Covid-19 world”.

It must also be pointed out that not only the Hong Kong residents are interested in investing in Portugal but also many British expatriates living in Hong Kong are concerned about the instability in HK and also the consequences of Brexit and see Portugal as a safe and peaceful option.

Edge International Lawyers
July 2020