[Updated] Portugal: Changes to Immigration Laws for Select Foreign Nationals

Last Updated on March 16, 2023

This article was originally published on 8 August 2022 and was updated on 6 October 2022 and 15 March 2023 to reflect new information.  

15 March 2023 Update: The government of Portugal announced that citizens of the Community of Portuguese-Speaking Countries (CPLP) can now apply online for a residence permit for Portugal.   

In order to acquire the online residence permit, either an expression of interest must have been submitted by 31 December 2022, or a CPLP residence consular visa must have been issued after 31 October 2022. 

According to the government announcement, the new portal is intended to make the residence permit process faster and simpler for eligible nationals.  

This article was originally published on 8 August 2022 and was updated on 6 October 2022 to reflect new information.  

4 October 2022 Update: The government of Portugal will implement new measures to the Law on Foreign Nationals on 30 October 2022. According to the government announcement, these measures will simplify immigration procedures for nationals from member states of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLP), residence authorization for digital nomads and researchers and the exit and entry of minors into the country.

As a result of these measures, applications for the granting and renewal of residence permits for nationals of CPLP member states will be exempt from submitting the following:

  • Proof of valid travel insurance
  • Proof of means of subsistence
  • A copy of a return ticket

These travelers will also be exempt from appearing in-person when filing for a visa.

The government of Portugal also shared information on document requirements for certain work authorization types for foreign nationals. For additional information on these changes, check here.

Key Points

  • The government of Portugal approved changes to its immigration laws for foreign nationals from the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries on 21 July 2022


The government of Portugal introduced changes to the Law on Foreign Nationals on 21 July 2022. Under these changes, the government of Portugal will streamline visa processing for citizens from the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries (CPLP). These countries include Angola, Brazil, Cabo Verde, Equatorial Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, São Tomé and Príncipe, and Timor-Leste.

Citizens of CPLP’s member states will only be required to complete a background check as part of the application process. The government will also reduce labor market testing requirements for CPLP citizens applying for residence.

What are the Changes?

On 21 July 2022, the Portuguese government introduced changes to its immigration laws. These measures aim to streamline immigration measures for foreign nationals from CPLCs.

Looking Ahead

The changes have already been approved by the Portuguese Parliament and are expected to become effective in September 2022. Continue to check the government of Portugal’s website and Envoy’s website for the latest updates and information.

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Content in this publication is for informational purposes only and not intended as legal advice, nor should it be relied on as such. For additional information on the issues discussed, consult an attorney at one of the two U.S. Law Firms working with the Envoy Platform or another qualified professional. On non-U.S. immigration issues, consult an Envoy global immigration service provider or another qualified representative.