Restrictions on the right of movement during the state of emergency

in News · 21-03-2020 09:31:00 · 3 Comments

If you have been unsure if you are able to leave the house during the state of emergency in Portugal, new clearer guidelines have now been released.

The Government decree establishing the exceptional measures to be implemented during the state of emergency due to the Covi-19 pandemic provides for restrictions on the right of movement, all of the following will come into force at 00:00 am Sunday.

The following are the main measures relating to the right of movement included in the diploma:

Mandatory containment

Compulsory confinement, in a health establishment or in their home relates to:

- Patients with COVID-19 and those infected with SARS-Cov2.

- Citizens for whom the health authority or other health professionals have determined under active surveillance.

Violation of the containment obligation constitutes a crime of disobedience.

Special duty of protection

Those subject to a special duty of protection:

- Those over 70 years old.

- Immunosuppressed people and people with a chronic disease who, according to the guidelines of the health authority, should be considered at risk, namely hypertensive, diabetic, cardiovascular patients, patients with chronic respiratory disease and cancer patients (may, however, except in case of medical discharge, circulate for the exercise of professional activity).

Those who are subject to a special duty of protection may only travel in public spaces and roads, or in spaces and private roads equivalent to public roads, for:

- Acquisition of goods and services.

- Travel for health reasons.

- Travel to post offices and post offices, bank branches and agencies of insurance brokers or insurance companies.

- Short trips for physical activity, although collective physical activity is prohibited
- Short trips to walk dogs

(These restrictions do not apply to health professionals and civil protection agents, to political office holders, magistrates and leaders of the social partners).

General duty of home confinement

Citizens who are not subject to “mandatory confinement” or “special duty of protection” can only travel in public spaces and roads, or in spaces and private roads similar to public roads for:

- Acquisition of goods and services.

- Travel to perform professional or similar activities.

- If they are looking for a job or responding to a job offer.

- Displacement for health reasons, namely to obtain health care and to transport people to whom such care should be administered or to give blood.

- Displacement for emergency reception of victims of domestic violence or trafficking in human beings, as well as children and young people at risk, decreed by a judicial authority or Commission for the Protection of Children and Youth, in a residential or family home.

- Travel to assist vulnerable people, people with disabilities, children, parents, the elderly or dependents.

- Travel to accompany minors on short trips to "enjoy the outdoors" and to attend schools.

- Short trips for physical activity, although collective physical activity is prohibited.

- Travel to participate in social volunteering actions.

- Travel for "other imperative family reasons", namely the fulfillment of parental responsibility sharing.

- Visits, when authorized, or delivery of essential goods to people who are disabled or deprived of their freedom of movement.

- Participation in procedural acts with the judicial entities.

- Travel to post offices and post offices, bank branches and agencies of insurance brokers or insurance companies.

- Short trips to walk pets and to feed animals.

- Travel by veterinarians, animal owners for veterinary medical assistance, caregivers from colonies recognized by the municipalities, volunteers from zoophilic associations who need to travel to animal shelters and animal rescue teams.

- Travel by staff of diplomatic, consular missions and international organizations located in Portugal, as long as they are related to the performance of official functions.

- Travel required to exercise press freedom.

- Return to personal home.

Circulation of private vehicles

Private vehicles can travel on public roads to carry out permitted activities or to refuel at gas stations.


It is the responsibility of the security forces and services to monitor compliance with the measures, with the possibility of non-compliance arising:

- The closure of establishments and the cessation of activities.

- Participation for the crime of disobedience of those who violate the obligation of confinement and driving to their home (health authorities will communicate to the security forces and services the place of residence of citizens to whom the mandatory confinement measure is applied).

The security forces and services are also responsible for:

- Advice on the non-concentration of people on public roads.

- The recommendation to all citizens to fulfill the general duty of home confinement, under the terms and with the exceptions provided.


The right to freedom of movement has been restricted in a number of countries: On March 14, the government of Spain declared a 15-day state of emergency as a measure to fight the coronavirus. All of the residents in Spain have been ordered to stay home except to go to work or to exercise, buy food supplies or go to the drug store. In Italy, residents should not leave their homes except to work, for health reasons or for other needs such as purchasing essential goods. A person who leaves their residence must be able to provide proof that they are doing so for one of the aforementioned reasons. The authenticity of these statements may be checked by the police and providing a false statement is considered a crime. In the Czech Republic, residents are banned from heading out to gyms, swimming pools, wellness services and saunas, as well as to public libraries and galleries. Schools and university studies have also been cancelled.

By HealthyBooklet from UK on 08-10-2020 01:47

I am UK citizen but permanent resident and live in a condominium. There are people in permanent residency some like myself and wife who are 70 plus, We and others have chosen to self quarantine and follow the guidelines on travel out only foe essential and operate 2metre spacing. What about the rules applicable to condominiums some are inviting people who are not resident to come over etc this surely increases the contact risk and what about communal areas such as the swimming pool. I share the owner representation for administration at the condo but cannot find any advice. With Easter holiday approaching it maybe appropriate to issue some guide lines Can you help Richard Bradberry

By Richard from Algarve on 26-03-2020 03:49

I have to renew my driving licence in May but It would be irresponsible to visit the doctor for a medical. Are the authorities planning to extend the DL expiry date? It does have insurance implications.

By Chris Wright from Algarve on 25-03-2020 11:30
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