Moving to Portugal: administrative procedures and international health insurance

Portugal is becoming more and more attractive for expatriates, with around 27,000 foreign residents in 2023. In this article, discover detailed information on the steps necessary to establish your residence in Portugal. Find out about the registration certificate, international health insurance, NIF and the Portuguese tax regime.
Find out why health insurance is crucial when choosing to live in Portugal and get a free quote for your international health insurance!

What international health insurance to move to Portugal?

Whether you are European or not, it is essential to take out international health insurance if you plan to move to Portugal. Additionally, the costs of medical care abroad add up quickly, and you could quickly find yourself in a difficult situation.
1st euro expatriate insurances offer you immediate coverage as soon as you arrive, and as soon as you start spending on health costs. Get a free quote for your health insurance in Portugal, and we will recommend the option best suited to your situation.

What are the administrative formalities for residing in Portugal?

For citizens of a member country of the European Union, it is no longer necessary to hold a visa or residence permit to settle in Portugal. A valid passport or identity card will suffice. For stays lasting more than 3 months, you will need to obtain a registration certificate from the town hall of your place of residence “Câmara municipal” in order to regularize your stay.

European citizens will be able to apply for the “Certificado de registo de cidadão da união europeia” by presenting their identity card or passport. It is advisable to have a birth certificate translated into Portuguese, and this request costs 15 euros.

Beyond 5 consecutive years of expatriation in Portugal, you will have the possibility of requesting a permanent residence permit from the foreigners and borders service. The documents required for this request are:

• An identity card or passport
• Declaration that you carry out a subordinate or independent professional activity in Portugal.

Or :

• Declaration that you have sufficient resources.
• A certificate of international health insurance.
• A criminal background check document

There are two types of permits, one with a validity ranging from 90 days to one year and the other valid for 5 years, renewable for a maximum of 10 years.
Remember to request your NIF (tax identification number) within 30 days of your third month of presence in Portugal. You will need it for various administrative procedures such as opening bank accounts or taking out subscriptions. You can request the N.I.F either from the tax office where you live or online via the Municipal Council website.

How to obtain your insurance certificate for a Visa in Portugal or a residence permit?

When you take out Mondassur international health insurance, you will immediately receive your insurance certificate. Note that this insurance certificate is required for your visa or residence permit application. Without it, your request cannot be processed.
If you are already insured, you can obtain this certificate:

• Online, from your personal space on our website.
• By Whatsapp by contacting us on +33 7 66 54 12 12.
• By calling us on the number +33 1 80 87 57 80.
• By requesting it via our contact form.
• By sending us an e-mail to

What is the tax regime applied to expatriates in Portugal?

The Portuguese tax regime is still attractive, but note that Portugal will stop granting tax exemption to foreign retirees from 2024. This measure aims to avoid an increase in property prices.
Non-habitual resident status can be requested by any person who meets three criteria:

• Residing abroad.
• Not having lived in Portugal in the previous five years.
• Intend to settle in Portugal.

In order to obtain resident status, it is necessary to stay in Portugal for at least 183 days per year or to have a primary residence there.
The tax regime for “non-habitual residents” is still in place for people wishing to reside in Portugal and who have not been tax domiciled in Portugal over the last 5 years. This tax regime is valid for 10 consecutive years from arrival in Portugal. Once this period has expired, the general tax rules of Portugal will apply.

Why do retirees in Portugal need to have international health insurance?

Portugal has long attracted many retirees thanks to its tax advantages and its lower cost of living than in France, which allows them to invest more easily and take full advantage of their leisure time. However, with the announcement of the end of the special tax regime reserved for European retirees from 2024, the tax situation is changing.

Retirees in Portugal, due to their age, often have greater health needs, and they favor private health care for the quality provided. However, these private health services can be expensive. This is why international health insurance becomes essential for retired expatriates in Portugal. This insurance offers complete coverage of their medical expenses in the public and private sectors, and ensures their peace of mind in the face of current tax changes.

Please note that even if you are a long-term resident in Portugal, you need international health insurance. It ensures that you have coverage in the event of illness, accident or any other situation requiring medical intervention anywhere in the world. Get a free quote immediately for your health insurance in Portugal!

If you are considering moving to Portugal, remember to take into account recent changes in administrative and tax formalities, particularly regarding tax exemption for foreign retirees. Be sure to check with the Portuguese authorities and consult a tax expert to ensure you comply with all legal requirements.

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