Work Permits for Portugal


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work permit for portugalWork permits for Portugal are granted differently, according to an expat's country of origin.

Expats who are nationals of an EU member state do not need a work permit for Portugal for their first six months in the country. However, after this period they will be required to apply for a residence permit to live in Portugal. This is more of a formality and simply makes life easier when it comes to applying for a bank account in Portugal and also serves as proof of address.

Those moving to Portugal from outside the EU will either need to have a secure job offer or be married to a Portugeuse citizen in order to apply for a work permit. 
 

Work permits for EU nationals


EU nationals are not restricted from finding employment in Portugal, and are granted a six month (180 day) period to live in the country, and find work without obtaining a visa.

In order to be formally employed, though, it is necessary for these expats to obtain a residence card (
Cartão de Residencia), a process that, albeit simple, results in its own long queues and delays.The residence card can only be obtained from the Portuguese Immigration Office (Serviços de Estrangeiros e Fronteiros).

Neither a work permit nor a residence card is needed for EU citizens working for an employment period of three months or less.

Work permits for non-EU nationals


Non-EU nationals can only obtain a work permit for Portugal if married to a local, or if offered a secure job contract by a formal employer. As there are regulations in place that encourage companies to hire members of other EU countries before looking outside the sphere, it can be difficult to solidify a job offer and start the ball rolling.

If an expat does manage to find a job offer, the hiring company starts the process by applying to the Portuguese Labour Authorities for the work permit with a copy of the contract. Once completed, the expat applicant must apply for a Portuguese work permit at their local Portuguese Embassy.

There are several documents that need to be submitted in addition to the work permit application:

  • Valid passport
  • Evidence of financial means
  • Work contract
  • Means of transport
  • Health insurance

The work permit application process in Portugal can take up to eight months. Permits are usually granted for six months, and are renewable.

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