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Changes to the golden visa regime

The National Budget for 2020 was approved and sent to the President of the Republic for formal promulgation on the 9th of March.

One of the most debated issues in the social media was the alteration of the regime for issuance of Residence Permits for Investment, best known as the “Golden Visa” regime. It was even incorrectly stated that this regime was to be terminated by the Government, which isn’t the case.

In reality, there being various types of investment which are eligible, the National Budget authorized the Government to produce a change to the law which will limit the investments made via real estate to certain areas, namely to the communities of Municipalities in the interior of the Country, as well as the Autonomous Regions (the Madeira & Azores Islands).

In regard to the other types of eligible investments, the Government was only authorized to the change the minimum investment values and number of jobs to be created. These types of investments will still be able to be carried out in any part of the country, with no territorial restrictions.

While the Government will have until the end of 2020 to produce law with any of these changes, as it has been authorized to do, the Secretary of State for the Prime Minister, Tiago Antunes, has already clarified that any changes will only come into effect beginning in 2021.

Also, any changes made to the law will only be affect applications that are made once the new law is in force, and so there will be no issues with pending applications, renewals of already issued residence permits, or even applications for family members under the family reunification regime.