Immigration lawyers help navigate the Portuguese legal systemThanks to its blend of stunning landscapes, vibrant culture, fast-growing economy, and unmatched quality of life, Portugal has become increasingly appealing to individuals, family members, and investors looking for a fresh start in Europe.

However, embarking on a journey to relocate, establish a business, or acquire Portuguese nationality can be complex and demanding, especially if you’re a foreign national. Therefore, you may need the assistance of an immigration attorney in Portugal.

The guidance of a seasoned immigration attorney or law firm is an invaluable asset. Specializing in immigration and residency law, these professionals bring their expertise to streamline the often intricate legal matters associated with moving abroad.

From essential visas and residency permits to addressing real estate investments and intricate tax matters, immigration specialists offer comprehensive legal solutions to third-country nationals moving to Portugal.

This guide delves into the advantages of enlisting immigration law services in Portugal. It provides insights into the essential factors to consider when selecting the right lawyer to navigate the legal intricacies of your Portuguese journey.

Here’s what this article will cover:

  • Why hire immigration lawyers in Portugal?
  • What can an immigration law firm or lawyers do for you
  • How to find the best immigration lawyers in Portugal
  • Visa options for foreign nationals moving to Portugal
  • The associated fees of hiring a lawyer, and more!

What does a Portuguese immigration lawyer do?

golden visa lawyer portugalImmigration law specialists play a vital role in simplifying the intricate process of moving abroad for domestic and international clients, including individuals, families, and businesses. With specialization in Portugal’s immigration law and extensive industry expertise, these legal professionals offer guidance in various legal subjects. In some cases, your caseworkers provide insights into international law, family law, criminal law, business, and tax law, making their services valuable.

Third foreign nationals can also rely on their specialist lawyers to set up a bank account, register with the tax authorities, get their NIF number, and more.

Immigration-specialized lawyers can also provide non-EU nationals with a complete overview of all the residency permits offered by Portugal, such as Golden Visas, Digital Nomad Permits, and more. Experienced attorneys can help foreign nationals choose the visa that best suits their needs based on their nationality, intent, and background,

Lawyers prove indispensable when gathering necessary documentation for visa applications. While the standard prerequisites typically include a valid passport, a clean criminal record, and proof of health insurance, immigration specialists delve deeper into the specifics. They adeptly navigate the intricacies of each visa category, ensuring that clients compile the required documents accurately.

Attorneys who stay up-to-date with the latest changes in immigration laws by the Portuguese government will also ensure that their clients receive current and relevant advice throughout their immigration or residency visa process for Portugal.

Benefits of Hiring an Immigration Specialist Lawyer

Obtaining a visa, legal residency permit, or citizenship can be difficult if you are unfamiliar with Portugal’s processes and procedures. Well-versed in the Portuguese legal system, your relocation attorneys make this complex process hassle-free and, most importantly, offer you peace of mind. 

Legal immigration specialists provide these services:

  • lawyer golden visa portugalRepresenting clients in administrative courts.
  • Providing counsel on legal rights and obligations related to immigration matters while ensuring clients fulfill all criteria according to Portuguese nationality law.
  • Recommending appropriate courses of action based on a deep understanding of immigration law.
  • Assisting non-EU, non-EEA, non-Swiss, and other foreign nationals with processes that include visa applications and gaining legal work status in Portugal.
  • Guiding clients through the process and assisting with completing necessary documentation and steps accurately.
  • Liaising with Portuguese government officials and tax authorities on their client’s behalf during the visa application process.
  • Providing legal assistance with investment activities.

How to Choose the Right Immigration Specialist Lawyer in Portugal

Selecting the right lawyer is a critical decision when dealing with the intricacies of the Portuguese legal system.

It is essential to seek experienced lawyers who cater to both domestic and international clients, with a particular focus on English-speaking immigration lawyers, to ensure effective communication. Evaluating the associated fees is crucial to maintaining transparency throughout the legal process. 

Below are some useful tips for finding the best immigration specialists, to help you become a Portuguese citizen:

Specialization: Look for a lawyer or law firm who specializes in immigration law or has significant experience handling immigration cases. Specialization ensures they have in-depth knowledge of the intricacies of immigration laws and procedures.

How to Choose the Right Immigration Lawyer in PortugalReputation: Research the lawyer’s reputation by reading client reviews, testimonials, and any online feedback. Additionally, seek recommendations from friends, family, or professional networks who have experience with immigration specialist firms in Portugal.

Credentials: Verify the lawyer’s credentials, including their education, licensing, and membership in relevant professional organizations. Accreditation from organizations like the Portuguese Bar Association can indicate a lawyer’s commitment to professional standards.

Communication: Choose a lawyer who communicates effectively and promptly. Clear communication is essential for understanding your case, the legal process, and potential developments.

Experience: Consider the lawyer’s experience handling cases similar to yours. Experienced attorneys are more likely to anticipate challenges, navigate complex legal issues, and provide effective representation.

Accessibility: Ensure the lawyer is accessible and responsive to your inquiries. Accessibility is crucial for addressing concerns, providing updates on your case, and maintaining a strong client-lawyer relationship.

Personalized approach: Seek a lawyer who takes a personalized approach to your case, considering your unique circumstances and goals. A lawyer who tailors their strategy to meet your needs is more likely to achieve favorable outcomes.

Transparency: Choose a lawyer who is transparent about their fees, billing practices, and the potential outcomes of your case. Transparency fosters trust and helps you make informed decisions about your legal representation.

Equipped with an expert team of English-speaking immigration specialists in Portugal and offering legal services, Global Citizen Solutions is a smart choice for foreign nationals moving to Portugal.

Our team specializes in adeptly navigating legal complexities and ensuring successful outcomes. Whether you plan to visit Portugal or establish a long-term residence, our legal services cover a broad spectrum to address your specific needs, such as:

  • Golden Visa program or residency by investment guidance
  • Citizenship applications
  • Residence permits
  • Immigration appeals
  • Legal support
  • Naturalization process
  • Tax and non-habitual resident (NHR) regime
  • Family reunification processes
  • Legal representation for immigration matters

Questions to Ask Your Immigration Attorney

portugl nhrOnce you have decided on an immigration attorney to work with or if you would like to gauge if they would be the right fit, here are a few essential questions to ask:

  • Do they specialize in immigration?
  • What is their experience level with immigration?
  • How much does their service cost?
  • What actions and procedures will be undertaken on your behalf?
  • What is their opinion on the best strategy for you to move to Portugal?
  • In their view, how likely is a successful outcome?
  • What is the timeline for your immigration process?
  • What will they need from you to successfully work on this process together?

Portugal Immigration Lawyer Fees

Immigration attorney fees vary depending on your chosen company or law firm. There are many immigration firms in Portugal, so working out the best one for your needs is crucial.

Some lawyers offer initial consultations for free, while others may charge a nominal fee for an initial meeting.

Hourly rates for immigration to Portugal lawyers range from €100 to €300 or more per hour. This mainly depends on the lawyer’s or law firm’s experience, expertise, and location.

Lawyers may offer flat fees for specific immigration services, such as visa applications, residence permits, citizenship applications, or appeals. Depending on the case’s complexity, these flat fees can range from a few hundred to several thousand euros.

Immigrate to Portugal: Explore your Visa Options

Immigrate to Portugal: Explore your Visa Options

Now that we’ve covered the benefits of seeking out professional legal services to assist you with your immigration journey to Portugal, it’s time to take a look at the visa options. Each option can help foreign nationals obtain their residence permit and, eventually, citizenship in this beautiful European country.

Each visa has its own eligibility criteria and requirements for those seeking to move to Portugal. For instance, evidence of health insurance and opening a Portuguese bank account might be necessary. Your lawyer can help you navigate these visa requirements or immigration matters and gather the necessary documentation to apply for your residence visa.

Portugal Golden Visa

Guide-to-Citizenship-by-InvestmentThe Portugal Golden Visa Program, also known as the residence permit for investment activity (ARI), is a five-year residency-by-investment scheme for non-EU citizens.

The Golden Visa is one of the easiest ways to immigrate to Portugal. This program allows the visa holder to become a permanent resident or a Portuguese citizen if the qualifying investment made is kept for at least five years and additional requirements set forth by the Portuguese immigration and nationality laws are obeyed.

Consider hiring an accredited Portugal Golden Visa lawyer to help you navigate Portugal’s famous residency-by-investment program for a seamless experience to acquire your residence permit.

As of October 2023, the investment options that qualify for this visa have changed. Most notably, capital transfers and real estate investments are no longer eligible. Discover the program in our article, Portugal Golden Visa 2024: New Rules and Complete Guide.

GCS-ICONS-33Portugal D7 Visa

The Portugal D7 Visa, also known as the Portugal Retirement Visa or Passive Income Visa, enables non-EU, non-EEA, or non-Swiss citizens to apply for temporary residency in Portugal. To be eligible for the D7 visa, you must meet the monthly minimum income requirements of €820.

The D7 Visa is a pathway to obtaining a permanent residency permit and, after five years, depending on the requirements set forth by Portuguese immigration and nationality laws being obeyed, the possibility of obtaining citizenship.

Take a free test now to find out if you are eligible for the Portugal D7 Visa

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GCS-ICONS-10Portugal D2 Visa

The Portugal D2 Visa, also referred to as the Portugal Entrepreneur Visa or the Immigrant Entrepreneur Visa, is a gateway for entrepreneurs who are non-EU citizens to acquire residency in Portugal. It’s issued to individuals intending to start a new business or purchase an existing business in the country. There are two types of Portugal D2 Visas: the Entrepreneur Route and the Independent Service Provider Route.

The visa is valid for four months, during which the entrepreneur must enter Portugal and apply for a residence permit. This permit is valid for two years and can be extended for three years. After five years of residency, applying for Portuguese citizenship or permanent residence is possible.

Portugal Digital Nomad Visa

Introduced in October 2022, the Portugal Digital Nomad Visa (D8 Visa) allows digital nomads to live or work in Portugal for a set period. Remote workers can use the Digital Nomad Visa to apply for 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 earn four times Portugal’s minimum wage or more. In 2024, this comes to $3,524 (€3,280) every month.

GCS-ICONS-71Portugal D3 Visa

The Portugal D3 Visa, also known as a Highly Qualified Activity Permit, is a residence visa that allows holders to apply for a residence permit that is initially valid for two years. After this, the holder of the D3 Visa can apply for a temporary Portuguese residence permit or the European Union (EU) Blue Card.

The D3 Visa Portugal is also a path toward permanent residence and EU citizenship for highly qualified individuals. If you are a D3 Visa holder, after five years of living permanently in Portugal, you can apply to obtain residency and eventually get Portuguese citizenship.

To apply for the D3 Visa at the Portuguese Embassy or Consulate, the applicant must already have a valid employment contract or a self-employed contract (a promise of work contract or a promise of a self-employed contract are also eligible) to provide services to a company based in Portugal.

Portugal D6 Visa

The Portugal D6 Visa, also called the Family Reunification Visa,  allows family members of Portuguese residents to move to Portugal. If you live in Portugal on another visa or have a settled status or residence permit as an EU citizen, you can apply for a D6 visa to bring your spouse, partner, or family to live with you in the country.

One of the main benefits of the Portugal D6 Visa for foreign nationals is the prospect of permanency. After holding this visa and residing in Portugal for five years, individuals and their families can apply for a permanent residence permit and obtain Portuguese citizenship.

Portugal D1 Visa

Also known as the Portugal Work Visa, the Portugal D1 Visa allows non-EU citizens who have accepted a job offer from an employer in Portugal. Once you receive your job offer, you can start the process of applying for a Portugal work visa.

This type of visa is valid only for non-EU citizens who have landed a job in Portugal or are married to Portuguese citizens. When your request for a work visa in Portugal gets approved, you can travel to Portugal and begin the process of obtaining a residence. After five years of living legally and working in Portugal, you can apply for permanent residency.

Portugal Student Visa

Non-EU students considering studying in Portugal can apply for a Portuguese Student Visa (sometimes known as a ‘study visa’) at their nearest Portuguese Embassy or Portuguese Consulate in their home country. There are two Portugal student visa types for non-EU citizens:

  • Short-term student visa (Type C): This is a short-stay visa for non-EU citizens who plan to undertake a course or a research project in Portugal for less than 90 days.
  • Long-term student visa (Type D): This is a long-stay visa for students and researchers undertaking studies or research projects in Portugal for over 90 days.

Why choose Global Citizen Solutions for your Immigration Visa?


  • GCS has offices located across Portugal.
  • Members of the US-Portugal and UK-Portugal Chambers of Commerce in Portugal and the Investment Migration Council (IMC).
  • Our expert team can help you throughout your journey to secure your Visa.


  • Our successful track record in applications provides reassurance to applicants.
  • We have helped clients from more than 35 countries secure residency in Portugal.


  • With a single channel of communication, our approach ensures that you have complete clarity on your application.
  • Our BeGlobal® Onboarding System allows for a total flow of information.


  • Our pricing is clear and detailed; you will not face any hidden costs.
  • All data is stored within a GDPR-compliant database on a secure SSL-encrypted server.

Frequently Asked Questions About the Top Immigration Lawyers in Portugal

Why work with an immigration lawyer?

Seeking professional legal help from immigration attorneys will make moving to Portugal hassle-free and give you peace of mind. Your lawyer will also ensure you receive current and relevant advice throughout the process. You can also keep up with the latest immigration news on the AIMA website (formerly SEF -Immigration and Border Services).

If your specialist lawyer in Portugal speaks English and Portuguese, communication will be smoother throughout the immigration process.

What does a Portuguese immigration lawyer do?

Immigration specialist law firms or attorneys play a vital role in simplifying the intricate immigration process for individuals, families, and businesses. With specialization in the Portuguese legal system and Portugal’s immigration laws as well as extensive industry expertise, these legal professionals offer guidance in various legal areas.

How much does an immigration lawyer cost in Portugal?

Legal fees vary depending on the location, specialist company or law firm you choose to work with. There are many law firms in Portugal, so it’s crucial to find the best one for your needs and personal circumstances, such as a residence permit, work visas or Golden Visa.

Do I need an immigration lawyer to move to Portugal?

Experienced immigration lawyers can offer expertise, help navigate potential challenges, handle paperwork, and ensure accurate communication with the competent authorities. They can also guide you through the specific requirements and help you navigate any possible challenges. If you are not fluent in Portuguese, hiring a lawyer who is can be advantageous.

Can an immigration lawyer assist with family reunification in Portugal?

Yes, most Portuguese national visas allow for family reunification, which means you can bring your spouse, minor children (including adopted children), or dependent parents with you. Law firms in Portugal can assign you a lawyer who can assist with all processes and procedures in this matter.

How can I find a reputable immigration lawyer in Portugal?

Be sure to search for a specialist attorney who meets your personal circumstances. By partnering with an agency with a 100% success rate, you can find the top immigration attorneys or any law firm dedicated to helping any foreign national acquire their residence permit, family reunification, or other legal solutions related to immigration.

What should I consider when choosing an immigration attorney in Portugal?

It’s important to choose a lawyer who specializes in immigration laws and visa applications and has a high success rate. At Global Citizen Solutions, our team of immigration specialists are all lawyers and will guide you through your visa application, take you through legal loopholes, and ensure a successful outcome.

You may also want to consider factors such as which law firms offer English speaking lawyers and their level of experience of working with various international clients.

What are the different types of Portuguese visas and residence permits that an immigration attorney can assist with?

A Portuguese immigration attorney can assist with all types of visas and residence permits available in Portugal. These include a startup visa, family reunion visa, residency visa, work permit, long stay visas, and visas for highly qualified professionals. A Portugal visa lawyer can also offer more personalized support by assisting with a real estate purchase and other legal needs.

How can an immigration law firm help with the Portuguese immigration process?

An immigration law firm can guide you through the immigration process. They can ensure you know all of the visa requirements, have the correct documents, and avoid any costly mistakes or omissions that could lead to visa rejections or delays.

How much does an immigration lawyer cost in Portugal?

Legal fees for immigration services in Portugal can vary depending on the law firm you work with.

Hourly rates for immigration specialist lawyers in Portugal typically range from €100 to €300 or more per hour.

Some lawyers may also offer flat fees for specific immigration services, such as visa applications, residency permits, citizenship applications, or appeals.

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