The Average processing time for Portugal golden visa program is 10 months, according to our latest experience with applicants for 2021. The Covid pandemic has caused more delays in processing applications and many applicants find it difficult to arrange KYC and other important documents with proper attestation  due to lockdown measures in their home countries.

With Portugal implementing new golden visa rules, increasing the investment requirement to 350,000 euros from Jan 1, 2022, We expect last minute rush will cause further delays of more than 12-14 months for new GV applicants.


Here is the breakdown of GV processing timeline of what happens in these 10 months…

1st  Month

  • Sign contract with the legal firm or agency.
  • Prepare initial KYC documents
  • Register NIF Tax number
  • Open bank account in Portugal

Note: opening a bank account and necessary compliance checks to make the account active will consume 2-3 weeks.

2nd Month

  • Transfer funds to bank account in Portugal.
  • Prepare legalized document for execution of Public deed
  • Translate important documents for SEF.
  • Apply with SEF portal application online with fees. (All documents including criminal certificate, birth certificate, marriage certificate must be legalized at Portuguese embassy or must contain apostille.)
  • SEF takes 2-3 months to pre-approve the GV application

4th month

  • Receive SEF approval
  • Schedule biometrics appointment. Appointment slots available after 2 months. During peak summer months from Jun/Jul, expect wait times 3 months.

6th month

Visit Portugal for biometrics for one day including with family members. if you are outside schengen, you should apply for visa at consulate to visit Portugal for biometrics. This mainly depends on Covid restrictions by country.

10th Month

The biometrics approval takes atleast 4-5 approve the Residence cards issued for Golden Visa program. This can be collected by the proxy and can be sent to you by mail.


The Residence cards can be renewed in first, third or fifth year depending the GV investment. Investments excess of 500,000 euros will receive five year validity.

5th Year

After 5 years of the issuance date of the first GV card, we are now able to request Citizenship or Permanent Residency (PR).

To apply  PR, you must not have criminal record, pass A2 language test, pay taxes and social security, and must have had temporary residency for 5 years. To keep your permanent residency alive, you must not be outside Portugal for more than six months.

To apply for Portuguese citizenship, this is also EU citizenship

  • To have been in Portugal during the required days of stay (7 days per year on average);
  • Knowledge of Portuguese – A2;
  • Not sentenced to 3 or more years in prison;
  • Not a threat to National Security or Defense, or be part of terrorist activities.

We tell clients to avoid last minute rush when applying for GV program, this could lead to delays of more than one year. If you wait and keep guessing, you will miss out on the golden window and end up paying more. That is from 2022, the GV investments will increase by 20%.