The Portugal D7 Visa, sometimes referred to as the Portugal Retirement Visa or Passive Income Visa, was established by the Portuguese Government in 2007. This visa enables individuals who are not citizens of the EU/EEA/Switzerland to apply for residency in Portugal.
Whether you are a retiree or an entrepreneur from a non EU country, you can enjoy Portuguese residency privileges thanks to this handy visa.
The D7 Visa serves as a pathway to obtaining a permanent residency permit and, in the long run, the possibility of attaining citizenship.
This article helps you understand the Portugal D7 Visa.
We will cover the following:
- What is the D7 Visa?
- What are the benefits of the D7 residence permit?
- Free D7 Visa eligibility test
- How to get the D7 residence permit in Portugal
- Getting a NIF number and opening a Portuguese bank account
- What are the D7 Visa / D7 residence permit requirements?
- D7 Visa processing time
- D7 Visa application process
Portugal D7 Visa: An Overview
What is the Portugal D7 Visa
The Portuguese government introduced a special visa type in 2007, known as the D7 Visa, the Retirement Visa, or Passive Income Visa. This residency visa permits any non-EU/EEA or non-Swiss citizens to apply for residency in Portugal, provided that they have a reasonable passive income.
Indeed, the D7 Visa is an affordable and attractive Portugal immigration visa allowing non-EU citizens to get Portuguese residency provided they have sufficient funds to sustain themselves during their stay in Portugal.
Pensioners, entrepreneurs who want to live in Portugal, retired foreign citizens, or other expats living off of a recognized stable income, such as movable property, rental income, real estate, intellectual property, or financial investments, may be eligible to apply for the D7 Portuguese Visa, and subsequently, apply for a residence permit. The D7 is also known as the Passive Income Visa as it requires a regular passive income.
The residence permit granted through the D7 Visa is valid for two years and can then be renewed for a three-year period. After this, the residence permit can then be converted into a permanent residence permit.
After this five-year period of holding a legal residence permit under the D7 Visa regime, you’ll be able to request Portuguese nationality, provided you fulfill the other requirements foreseen in Portuguese law.
What are the benefits of the Portuguese the D7 Visa?
Similar to the Portugal Golden Visa Program, successful applicants for the D7 Visa can enjoy the following during the residency or citizenship stages:
The residence permit facilitates visa-free entry and movement throughout the Schengen region, allowing a non-EU citizen residing in Portugal to circulate freely within the European Union (EU) for a set number of days.
Portugal permanent residency and pathway to Portuguese citizenship
Once you’ve secured the D7 Visa, you can obtain a residence permit in Portugal, valid for two years. After that, you can renew your residence permit, valid for three years. After the five-year mark of holding legal residency, you’re eligible to apply for permanent residence and even citizenship if you wish.
Acquire residence rights in Portugal
As a Portuguese resident, you can enjoy a myriad of benefits, including the right to access the national health service and the local school system, conduct professional activity as an independent contractor, have full protection under Portuguese law, and be granted access to vocational training in Portugal.
Once you have a residence card, your family can join you in Portugal. Family reunification can be requested with SEF. The following family members are eligible: your spouse or partner, children under 18, including dependents, children over 18 who are dependents, your parents or spouse/partners’ parents, as long as they are dependent on you, and your minor siblings. Family reunification is one of the key attractions of the D7 Visa program.
Who is eligible to apply for the Portugal Passive Income Visa?
To be eligible for the Portuguese D7 Visa and begin your journey to obtain Portuguese residency, the primary applicant must be a non-EU national, and meet the minimum passive income requirements. You’ll have to prove that you have sufficient funds in a Portuguese bank account to sustain yourself during your stay.
Want to make sure if the D7 is the right choice for you? Take a free test now to know if you are eligible for the D7 Visa
D7 Alternative: Portugal’s Digital Nomad Visa
If you’ve taken the test above and found out you’re not eligible for the D7 Visa in Portugal – don’t worry! The Portuguese government has recently introduced a great alternative – the Digital Nomad Visa. This visa lets digital nomads live or work in Portugal for a set period. The visa application process began on 30 October last year.
The Digital Nomad Visa aims to control the short-term residence or stay of remote employees in Portugal. Remote workers can use the Digital Nomad Visa to apply for either a residency permit that can be extended for up to five years or a temporary stay visa with a maximum validity of one year. You are eligible for Portugal’s Digital Nomad Visa if you make four times Portugal’s minimum wage or more. This comes to $3,350 (€3,040) every month.
The Digital Nomad Visa is perfect for remote workers and entrepreneurs. You can apply for a Portugal Digital Nomad Visa at the local Portuguese Consulate in your home country.
Portugal D7 Visa Requirements: Eligibility Criteria
To secure an initial residency permit D7 Visa Portugal requirements for the application process are as follows. You must:
- Be a non-EU citizen
- Meet the minimum passive income requirements: earn a sufficient passive income above minimum wage of at least €760 per month (your income can be foreign sourced income and come from pensions, transferable equity, rental income, intellectual property, or financial equity)
- You have a rental agreement and can provide a residential address in Portugal.
- Have a clean criminal record. You cannot have a criminal conviction for a crime that is punishable by a prison sentence of more than one year in Portugal.
- You are able to spend a minimum of 16 months in Portugal on your temporary visa within the initial two-year period.
D7 Visa Portugal income requirements
To qualify for the Portugal D7 Visa and residence permit, applicants must demonstrate a stable and regular passive income. This income should be at least equivalent to the Portuguese minimum wage, which is currently €760 per month (€9,120 per year). This income can come from pensions, rental income, dividends, or other non-salaried sources. The specifics of the passive income requirements can be further clarified by our legal experts based on your unique situation.
The higher the passive income shown, the smoother the process, as it confirms your ability to sustain your lifestyle in Portugal without needing to work or produce additional income locally.
In compliance with Portuguese law, the main applicant is advised to provide and maintain a Portuguese bank statement with a minimum balance of €18,240.00 in a bank account in Portugal throughout the application period.
This balance increases with additional family members:
- An extra €9,120.00 is needed for a spouse or any other family member over 18,
An extra €5,472.00 is needed for each family member under 18.
For example, a family of four with two adults and two minors will need to meet minimum income requirements and maintain at least €38,304.00 in their Portuguese bank account during the family reunification period.
Is health insurance necessary for the Portugal Passive Income Visa?
Yes, applicants must have travel insurance at the time of visa application and have health insurance by their SEF appointment, ensuring coverage while residing in Portugal during the application process.
There are numerous private insurance plans in Portugal that can be paid through direct debit from your newly opened Portuguese bank account.
After moving to Portugal, you can enroll in the Portuguese public health system (SNS), which can be used to renew your residence permit later.
Getting a NIF Number and Portuguese Bank Account
Please note that to live in Portugal, you will need to obtain a NIF number. This number is your personal Portuguese tax number that allows you to carry out fiscal activities in Portugal. You can have a power of attorney to obtain this number on your behalf before you enter the country.
After you have obtained your NIF number, you will be required to open a Portuguese bank account, which you can also set up remotely. Having a bank account in Portugal will enable you to make transactions in the country much easier, saving on potential currency exchange fees that would cost you if you relied on the bank account of your home country.
To learn more about opening a bank account in Portugal, please refer to the following articles:
Portugal D7 Visa Application Process
Portugal D7 Visa application form
This is a comprehensive list of all the required documents that will help secure your residency status when you apply for the D7 Visa Portugal:
- Completed D7 Visa application form
- Valid passport
- Two passport photos (passport-sized)
- Proof of regular passive income
- Proof of adequate accommodation (12-month lease or purchase agreement)
- Clean criminal record background check
- Valid travel insurance with health coverage
- Six months of bank statements
- Portuguese tax number (NIF)
- Previous year’s tax statement
- Medical insurance
D7 Visa application process: step-by-step guide
1. Apply for the temporary D7 visa from your home country
2. Attend your SEF appointment and enroll your biometric data
3. Get your residency card
Portugal D7 Visa Processing Time
Obtaining a temporary four-month visa in your home country can take up to 60 days, provided you submit all the required information.
When you receive your visa, you will also get an appointment with SEF, booked by the Portuguese Consulate, when they issue your visa.
Once SEF has collected your documents and biometric data, it will take about three weeks for them to send your residence card to your Portuguese address. The legal deadline for this is 90 days.
D7 Visa Application Timeline
D7 Visa Portugal 2023: The Cost of the Portuguese D7 Visa
The Portugal D7 Visa cost is relatively low in comparison to some other programs, such as the Portugal Golden Visa. For the Portugal Golden Visa, you will need to make a significant investment in the country. The D7 Visa, however, is a much more affordable alternative.
Expect to pay the following amount for your D7 Visa:
- For your D7 Visa application, you can expect to pay €90
- For your residence permit, you can expect to pay around €160
In addition to the above-mentioned fees, it is important to clarify that there are other costs during the immigration process, such as airline tickets, relocation fees, health insurance, adequate accommodation, and so on.
Note: Also, keep in mind that the above fee can be changed at any time by the responsible Portuguese immigration authorities. As long as you meet the requirements, you should be able to get a D7 Visa in Portugal – the D7 rejection rate is quite low. Invalid travel insurance, insufficient reasons to stay in Portugal, fake travel documents, and the inability to provide evidence of accommodation can all lead to your D7 Visa application being rejected.
Getting A Residence Permit in Portugal through the D7 Visa
Portugual D7 Visa residency requirements
A holder of the temporary residence permit may be absent from Portugal for the following periods within the validity of the permit:
- Six consecutive months or
- Eight non-consecutive months
In the initial two years after obtaining the D7 visa, you’re required to reside in Portugal for a minimum of 12 to 16 months. Following this period, it is anticipated that you spend no less than 28 months in the country every three years.
There are exceptions (for example, work-related or certain other reasons) that need to be explained to SEF before the person leaves the country – or after in other exceptional cases.
In addition, if holders of the temporary residence permit prove that during their stay abroad, they resided in their country of origin where they carried out a professional or business activity or one of social or cultural nature, then this can also be deemed an exception to the rule.
As a holder of a temporary residence permit through your d7 visa portugal, you are advised to inform SEF before leaving the national territory if you intend to be absent from Portugal during the validity period for a timeframe exceeding six consecutive months or eight non-consecutive months.
You can learn more about your rights and duties as a Portuguese residency holder on the SEF (Portuguese Foreigners and Border Services) website.
How to get a Portuguese residence permit
In order to obtain the D7 Residence Permit, you will have to fulfill several requirements. Besides this, the process takes place in two stages.
- Apply in your home country for a temporary D7 Visa (which lasts for four months)
- Attend the appointment with SEF in Portugal, who will approve your residence permit
Submit all required documents to the Portuguese Consulate in your country of residence or to VFS Global (if this is the case). Ensure you have all the correct documents, as this can slow down the process.
If your visa application is approved, the Portuguese Consulate will deliver the temporary visa – the D7 Visa – which will allow you to travel to Portugal and grant you an appointment at SEF to formalize the residence permit request.
This temporary D7 Visa is valid for four months from its date of issue.
After your visa is issued, you will then need to attend your appointment in Portugal with SEF, where you’ll enroll your biometric data.
A temporary residence permit will then be granted for a two-year period. After this period, the residence permit will need to be renewed, which is then valid for a further three years.
As mentioned, after five years, you can exchange this for a permanent residence permit. Alongside permanent residency, you can also apply for Portuguese citizenship, provided you meet all the requirements under Portuguese nationality law. You must pass a basic Portuguese language test and hold a clean criminal record, amongst other conditions.
If you hold a residence card, you are entitled to benefit from Portugal’s Non-Habitual Tax (NHR) Regime. The NHR is a generous tax program with numerous benefits pertaining to your global income. It offers tax-free incentives on certain categories for a period of up to ten years, should you register with an address in Portugal.
Below are the types of income that may qualify under the NHR program:
- Real estate income
- Capital gains from the disposal of real estate
- Occupational pensions
- Personal income tax
- Business and self-employment profits derived from eligible occupations (but be mindful of relevant double taxation agreements)
As of 2020, pensioners registering for the NHR tax scheme are taxed at a rate of 10 percent on all foreign-sourced pension income.
NHR Ending: October 2023 Update
The Portuguese Government submitted the State Budget Proposal for 2024, and it includes the changes that determine the end of the Non-Habitual Resident (NHR) regime.
This is the initial version, which will still be subject to debates and votes, but which, given the majority that the Government party holds in the Assembly, cannot and should not be ignored. In effect, the proposed change has the following consequences from 01/01/2024:
- Anyone who already has the NHR at the time of entry into force maintains the regime under the same terms until completing ten years of benefiting from the status
- Anyone who meets the conditions for registration as non-habitual residents on 31 December 2023, as well as holders of a residence visa valid on that date, will be able to register within the deadline available (until 31 March 2024) and benefit from the scheme.
The final vote on the budget law will take place on 29 November 2023. Until then, we will closely monitor the evolution of this topic. You can find more information in our article: Is the Portugal NHR Program Ending?
Successful D7 Visa Journey: How We Can Help
Global Citizen Solutions is a boutique investment migration consultancy firm focused on finding the right residency or citizenship by investment program for individuals wishing to secure their future and become global citizens.
With offices in Portugal, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, and Brazil, our multilingual team guides individuals and families from start to finish, providing expert advice considering freedom, mobility, taxation, and security.
From helping individuals find their dream homes or investment to providing successful immigration and relocation services, our international team is with you every step of the way.
Global Citizen Solutions (GCS) offers a comprehensive service for your D7 Visa application in Portugal, including:
- Immigration Planning: Our Legal Team organizes a call with you to understand your needs and plans, creating a personalized immigration plan.
- Appointing a Fiscal Representative: GCS appoints a tax representative in Portugal for you. This representative applies for your NIF and communicates with the Portuguese tax authorities on your behalf.
- Preparing Required Documents: GCS takes care of all paperwork, writes necessary letters/declarations, and guides you through the required documentation, tailored to your circumstances.
- Securing Accommodation: GCS assists you in securing long-term accommodation in Portugal by either buying or renting a property.
- Visa Application Process: GCS supports you in the collection of necessary documents, schedules the visa interview appointment, and helps prepare for the interview. We provide information on processing times and requirements for handling your passport during this time.
- Conversion of the Visa into a Residence Permit: After arriving in Portugal with the D7 Visa, GCS assists you with the conversion process, gathering all necessary documentation, accompanying you to the Immigration Office, overseeing the application process, and aiding in the final collection of the residence card.
We can start working towards your D7 Visa application.
Frequently Asked Questions About the D7 Visa Portugal
What is the Portugal D7 Visa?
The D7 Visa, also called the Retirement Visa, is a Portuguese immigration permit allowing you to enter Portugal in order to apply for a residency permit, provided you have enough funds to sustain yourself during the duration of your stay and that you can prove that you live off your own passive income. After five years, you can exchange it for permanent residence.
Who is eligible for the D7 Visa?
In order to apply for the D7 Visa, you will need to be a non-EU national. You will be required to launch the D7 Visa application at your home country’s Portuguese Consulate. Once you receive a temporary D7 Visa, you will have to travel to Portugal and attend an appointment with SEF, who will grant you a residency permit. The D7 Visa is particularly popular with retired foreign citizens, who can use their passive income to apply, such as pensions, intellectual property, etc.
What are the D7 Visa Portugal income requirements?
Can I benefit from the Portuguese healthcare system with a Portugal D7 Visa?
Once you enter Portugal and your residency permit has been approved by SEF, you will be considered a Portuguese resident. You can therefore benefit from the Portuguese healthcare system. Keep in mind that you will need to register with the National Health Service (SNS) in order to benefit from its services.
What are the Portugal residency visa requirements for the Portugal D7 Visa?
In order to acquire the Portugal D7 Visa, you need to be a non-EU national, live off your own passive income, have sufficient funds to support yourself during your stay in Portugal, and hold a clean criminal record.
Is Portugal a good place for retirement?
Portugal is indeed an excellent destination for retirees. Not only is it a safe and stable country, but the climate, friendly people, and high standards of living at a relatively affordable rate are all big draws for retirees seeking permanent residency.
Is Portugal expensive?
No, Portugal is by no means considered an expensive country. In the more urban areas of Portugal, it’s possible to live comfortably at €1,300 a month. In the less populated areas of Portugal, that figure is even less.
Can I become a Portuguese citizen with a D7 Visa?
While a Portugal D7 Visa doesn’t automatically grant you citizenship, it does enable you to obtain Portuguese residency permit. In Portugal, all Portuguese residents can apply for citizenship after five years. Therefore, the D7 residency visa can indirectly lead you to obtain citizenship after the five-year mark.
How long does it take to get a D7 Visa for Portugal?
Securing the temporary four-month D7 Visa in your home country can take up to 60 days, and you must submit all the required documents and information.
Can you work in Portugal on a D7 Visa?
You cannot officially work in Portugal with the D7 Visa. However, if the main applicant later obtains a residency permit, they can work then in the country.
Who is eligible for a D7 visa?
Eligibility for a Portugal D7 visa includes:
- Retirees receiving a pension.
- Individuals who hold securities such as shares, investment funds, bonds, real estate, or intellectual property that generate regular income that meets the passive income requirements.
The applicant must provide proof of regular income, which could be monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, or annually from pensions, investment dividends, or royalties. This proof can be made by presenting the Annual Tax Return from the applicant’s place of residence or other relevant documents to the competent authorities.
What are the benefits of a D7 visa?
The D7 visa provides several benefits:
- Free Entry and Circulation in Schengen Zone: Upon receiving their residence permit, the applicant can freely enter and circulate in the Schengen Area.
- Freedom to Live and Work in Portugal: The visa holder can live and, if desired, engage in professional activity in Portugal.
- Family Reunification: The applicant can apply for any family members covered by the Family Reunification Program. This includes a spouse or partner, minor or disabled children, adult children dependent on the applicant or studying in Portugal, first-degree ascendants in the direct line who are dependent, and minor siblings who are dependent.
- Access to Health System and Resident Rights: Visa holders can enrol in Portugal’s national health system and have access to high-quality and affordable healthcare. They also have access to education, can request recognition of diplomas and qualifications, and gain access to Portugal’s social security system.
- Obtain Portuguese Non-Habitual Residency: With this status, individuals can access a tax exemption and tax deduction regime for ten years. After obtaining their residence permit, they become tax residents of Portugal, making it possible to apply for this regime.
How long does a D7 Visa typically last?
A D7 Visa is initially granted for a period of two years. After this period, it can be renewed for successive periods of three years. After five years of legal residency in Portugal, the visa holder may apply for a permanent residence permit or Portuguese citizenship.
What documents are typically required for a D7 Visa application?
For a D7 Visa application, the following documents are usually required:
- D7 Visa Application Form.
- A valid passport.
- Two passport-sized photographs.
- Proof of regular or passive income, also known as proof of sufficient funds.
- Proof of accommodation in Portugal.
- Proof of legal residency in the US (if applicable).
- Criminal Record Certificate.
- Request for criminal record inquiry by the Immigration and Border Services (SEF) in Portugal.
- Proof of valid health coverage.
Can I work or start a business with a D7 Visa?
While the D7 visa does not permit official employment in Portugal, the main applicant can work in the country once they obtain a residence permit. Starting a business, however, should be checked against specific local regulations as they may vary.
Can I bring my family members with me on a D7 Visa?
Yes, you can bring family members with you on a D7 Visa under the Family Reunification Program. The program covers:
- Your spouse or partner.
- Minor or disabled children, including adopted minor children.
- Children over 18 who are dependent on the couple or one of the spouses, are single, and studying at an educational institution in Portugal.
- First-degree ascendants in the direct line of the resident or respective spouse, provided they are dependent on them.
- Minor siblings, provided they are under the guardianship of the resident.
Note that the minimum income requirements change to ensure you have enough income to cover both yourself and any dependent family members.
Can I convert my existing visa to a D7 Visa?
there’s no general rule that allows or forbids converting an existing visa to a D7 visa. It typically depends on the specific type of your current visa. Contact us for legal advice tailored to your immigration situation.
What is the Portugal D7 Visa minimum stay?
You must be able to spend a minimum of 16 months in Portugal on your temporary D7 Visa within the initial two-year period.