At Sovereign, we have seen an unprecedented increase in the amount of people looking, to move here, to take advantage of the welcoming lifestyle - the climate, food, beaches, culture and the low cost of living. We have seen high net worth individuals, digital nomads, young entrepreneurs, and retirees attracted to Portugal by the tax breaks afforded under the Non-Habitual Residency (NHR) scheme or those just looking for a second passport opportunity for the freedom to travel in Europe.

According to the Global Peace Index 2021, Portugal was the second safest country in Europe after Denmark and fourth safest country in the World behind Iceland and New Zealand. Portugal regularly picks up world travel awards and, until last year, won Europe´s Leading Destination four years in a row.

However, moving your life to Portugal can be a bureaucratic nightmare if you do not get the right assistance before the move. It is vital to understand how you will be taxed here on your worldwide income and it can be a misconception to believe that you can live here tax free under the NHR. This depends on the double tax treaties in place with other countries, where your sources of income come from and how you are registered here as a tax resident. Procedures are always changing so it is important to work with a company such as Sovereign who has high level professionals and a team who are fully experienced in assisting clients with their immigration and tax department registrations. At Sovereign we have been providing this and many other global financial services to citizens from all over the World for three decades.

Sovereign can assist with residency applications for those with either an EU or non-EU passport providing solutions such as Golden Visas, D7 Visas and Non-Habitual Residency applications to support the path to tax residency. NHR is not a function of residency, it is a tax status.

The Sovereign Group concierge services include:

• Fiscal numbers and representation

• Bank account opening

• Golden Visa and D7 Guidance with the embassy /SEF Immigration

• Registration as tax resident

• NHR application

• Ongoing tax assistance with tax returns and fiscal guidance

• Corporate structuring for those in business and support CSP options in 16 countries including Portugal.

• Wealth and Asset Management

• Yacht Registration

• Marine insurance

• Aviation Registration

• Private Insurance services

It is imperative that clients are onboarded with experienced providers. Sovereign globally provides bespoke services and solutions and by always keeping up to date with the latest regulations in country we ensure that our clients navigate easily through the often-arduous bureaucratic processes which can make the journey of moving a nightmare.

Sovereign’s bi-lingual team work closely with clients and have forged deep relationships with lawyers and government offices to provide that special ability to get things done and get them done quickly.

Sovereign helps clients understand the immigration process and provides a high-level consultation and comprehensive review of clients’ assets and taxation for cross border planning which must be fully in place before any residency application is completed in Portugal. Careful planning ensures clients are fully supported throughout the whole procedure, also vitally, Sovereign continues to support everyone after they become resident.

For example, individuals do not want to find that they have to pay tax in Portugal on the sale of their property abroad, or that their income source is subject to higher taxes because it comes from a blacklisted jurisdiction. The Sovereign Group has the advantage in the marketplace because it is an international group with broad experience in managing complex structures involving assets and individuals across multiple jurisdictions.

With 26 offices around the world, spanning Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Africa, Sovereign’s full complement of industry experts offer services across market entry, trustee and director services, accounting, payroll, occupational and personal pension plans, employee benefit packages and incentive plans, local licenses and permits, company secretarial and company management.

Shelley Wren, Head of Business Development at Sovereign in Portugal explains “With the economic crisis resulting from the pandemic and the areas of the World where there is instability, people are reviewing their lifestyles. We are not seeing only high net worth individuals moving to Portugal but also families with young children hoping for a better quality of life here. However, we have also seen many people fall foul of the tax department because they did not work with an accredited company such as Sovereign. We have seen people wrongly registered as residents, others missing the opportunity to apply for the NHR, people with tax debts from unpaid property taxes, those who think they are resident when they remain non resident and more daunting issues. It never fails to amaze us! Our accounting team have been with Sovereign many years and are experienced in dealing with the complexities of foreign sourced income for the tax returns due by residents. Residents must declare in Portugal their worldwide income, another fact that many people are unaware of when they take up residency. “

The quality of life in Portugal is high despite this being a poor country with low wages which means that those with income sourced outside of Portugal can get more for their money and live here comfortably. It is now more of the norm for individuals to work from home, from anywhere in the world, thus opening the possibilities for a relocation. Young entrepreneurs are attracted to Portugal due to its standards of living and with a great emphasis on family being part of the Portuguese culture, this makes Portugal a top country to move to. Assisting clients with establishing their business here is part of Sovereign’s full-service remit and the option to immigrate is no longer a luxury afforded just to retirees.

Living, working or owning property in Portugal?

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