Residence Permit


The aim of your first visit to SEF (immigration authority) is to convert your work visa into a residence permit. The Residence Permit allows you to stay in Portugal as a resident and thus secure rights such as:

  • Education and training,
  • Pursuit of a subordinate professional activity,
  • Professional guidance, training, further training and retraining,
  • Access to healthcare,
  • Access to law and the courts.

Without prejudice to the applicable special conditions, in order to be granted a residence permit the following requirements must be met:


  1. Hold a valid residence visa, granted for one of the purposes provided for in the law for issuing a residence permit.
  2. The absence of any fact which, if known to the competent authorities, would have prevented the visa from being granted.
  3. Presence in Portuguese territory.
  4. Having a means of subsistence.
  5. Accommodation.
  6. Registration with Social Security (NISS - Social Security Identification Number); No criminal conviction for an offence in Portugal punishable by custodial sentence for a period longer than one year.
  7. Not being in the period of prohibition of entry into national territory, following a measure of removal from the Country.
  8. No indication in the Schengen Information System.


A Temporary Residence Permit is valid for two years and renewable for a further three, at which point you may apply for a Permanent Residence Permit, valid for a period of five years.


The residence permit is cancelled whenever:

  1. The holder has been subject to a coercive removal order or a judicial expulsion order from national territory.
  2. The residence permit has been granted on the basis of false or misleading statements, false or falsified documents, or using fraudulent means.
  3. There are serious grounds for believing that the holder has committed serious criminal offences or there are real indications that the holder intends to commit such offences, specifically within the territory of the European Union.
  4. For reasons of public order or safety.
  5. It can also be cancelled if the person concerned is absent from the country for unjustifiable reasons.
  6. If you hold a temporary residence permit, either six consecutive months or eight months interspersed within the total period of validity of the permit.
  7. If you hold a permanent residence permit, either 24 consecutive months or 30 interspersed months over a three-year period.


Absence beyond the above limits must be justified by submitting a request to AIMA before the resident leaves national territory or, in exceptional cases, after having left.