Last Updated on March 6, 2023 by Maryam Siddiqui
Cryptocurrency investors from all around the world are turning their heads to Portugal now. Living standards are high, the cost of living is low, and there are many options to invest money. But is there a crypto visa in Portugal? How can you get to live in Europe on Bitcoin? Does the Portuguese government tax gains from crypto assets?
We’ve heard all your questions, and we’re here to answer them all. There are many ways to obtain a Resident Permit in Portugal, and we’ll talk about all of them. Follow up and find out all about living in Portugal as a crypto investor.
Is there a crypto visa in Portugal?
Although you can find all kinds of wrong information out there, no, there is no crypto visa in Portugal.
But there are many other possibilities for a crypto investor to obtain a residence permit in the country.
How can a crypto trader get a visa to live in Portugal?
If you’re a non-EU national, it means you need a visa or residence permit to move and live in Portugal. And while owning Bitcoin won’t directly help you get a visa for Portugal, there are ways to use your earnings to do so.
Among investors of all types, the most common ways to get permission to live in Portugal are via:
- Golden Visa (Residence Permit for Investment Activity, or ARI);
- Passive Income Visa (D7 Visa);
- Entrepreneur or Business Visa (D2 Visa);
But, as you can conclude, none of them are directly related to cryptocurrencies. So, as there’s no crypto visa in Portugal, how can an investor obtain a residence permit?
Applying and obtaining a Golden Visa
What we recommend to crypto investors interested in living in Portugal is to apply for the Golden Visa, or as the official name says, a Residence Permit for Investment Activity.
It gives you and your family permission to live and work in Portugal and travel freely through the countries in the Schengen area. And after 5 years with a valid permit, you’ll get the possibility to apply for Portuguese citizenship.
Also, unlike visas to Portugal, the owner of the Golden Visa does not actually need to reside in Portugal. You just have to be here for 7 straight days in your first year in Portugal, and 14 days in subsequent years.
But to obtain a Golden Visa in Portugal, you must invest in the country. These are the most common investment options and the necessary value for the permit to be valid:
- Acquiring a property worth over €500,000;
- Acquiring a property over 30 years old or located in urban rehabilitation areas worth over €350,000;
- Acquiring a property over 30 years old or located in urban rehabilitation areas with a low population rate, worth over €280,000.
- Transferring capital worth €1.5 million;
- Real estate investments no longer include Lisbon, Porto, and the Algarve;
- Starting a company with a minimum €500,000 investment and creation of 5 jobs.
It won’t be a problem to set aside this amount for more traditional investment and further diversify your portfolio, right?
Can I start a crypto-related business in Portugal and get a D2 visa?
Yes, this is a possibility. Many crypto traders and influencers get to work and invest from anywhere. Why not Portugal?
The Dutch Bitcoin Family, for example, has been living in the Algarve for the past years and streaming almost daily from Albufeira.
However, before applying for a Business Visa, there are many steps to take. You’ll have to create a business plan and start a company in Portugal, register yourself and your company in a Portuguese bank, create Social Security and Tax numbers, find staff, and much more.
So, as you can read in detail on our website, this is not the simplest way to get a visa to live in Portugal. But if it’s your goal, go for it! Just know it takes a lot of time and effort.
Is Bitcoin considered passive income for a D7 visa?
No. According to Portuguese law, the D7 Visa only recognizes regulated passive incomes, such as:
- Property rents;
- Intellectual property rights;
- Other specific financial investments.
So no, you cannot use your crypto-related passive income to apply for a D7 visa. But you can apply if you have any other type of regulated passive income recognized by the Portuguese government.
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Why is Portugal attracting crypto traders?
Mostly known as a summer vacation destination, Portugal is also home to thousands of expats attracted by the high quality of life at a low cost.
But now, a new public is realizing how friendly Portugal can be. More specifically, crypto-friendly. Until November 2022, the country was one of the only ones where your crypto earnings were not taxed.
Hundreds of crypto-investors took advantage of the old policy and relocated to build a life for themselves here.
Currently, the sporadic sale of cryptocurrencies is now taxable under the Portuguese tax framework.
According to the changes in the Portuguese State Budget 2023, it appears that gains from crypto assets will now be subject to taxation in Portugal. Keep reading to know more about this!
After 5 years of living here, it’s possible to apply for Portuguese citizenship. A European passport might come in handy.
Lisbon, you were amazing! ❤️@Sheldon_Sniper pic.twitter.com/4OQu7ZGERq— Ran Neuner (@cryptomanran) November 12, 2021
Ran and Sheldon, the South Africans of one of the biggest YouTube crypto shows CryptoBanter, were some of the influencers who were in Lisbon in November 2021 for a Solana Conference.
This month also attracted several global investors for the Web Summit in the Portuguese capital, with lectures and debates about blockchain, the metaverse, and the future of cryptocurrencies.
If the future is here, Portugal is not lagging behind. Who knows, maybe in the future, there really will be a crypto visa in Portugal.
Are there tax benefits in Portugal and taxes in crypto?
One of the main attractions of Portugal for the crypto-rich is the benefits.
Ever since 2009, foreigners who want to invest in Portugal can benefit from the Non-Habitual Resident Tax Regime (NHR), which includes:
- 10 years of tax benefits;
- 20% IRS tax rate for internal income;
- 10% rate on foreign income.
This regime has attracted thousands of working expats and retirees to relocate to the country and enjoy ten years of tax incentives.
Coming back to whether crypto trading is taxed in Portugal – it wasn’t, up until recently. The government has been working on laws since May 2022 and has now updated regulations to tax gains from crypto assets.
Why are crypto assets now taxed since 2023?
Crypto assets were part of the “tax-exempt” category and are now part of the one that is subject to personal income tax. This essentially means that gains from crypto assets will be taxed similarly to other forms of income, such as wages or interest income.
So what exactly happened?
The government is fully aware that this change could tarnish the country’s image as one of the few European countries not to tax crypto assets. However, it was a difficult but necessary decision to put forth.
Many Portuguese banks have also stopped opening new accounts and have started closing accounts for cryptocurrency platforms.
As per Portugal Resident, here are some legalities to remember:
“….Crypto will be taxed in Portugal (presuming the measures are approved). This relates to all types of crypto coins, assets, and other crypto-related activities where gains are achieved.
- Disposals – When a Portugal tax resident sells a crypto asset held for less than 12 months, any gains will be subject to a flat tax rate of 28%; These gains would not be taxable if the assets were held for over a year;
- Trading – Any commercial activity involving crypto assets or crypto-related products, including mining, will be considered self-employment by the Portuguese government and, therefore, subject to income tax and social security;
- Stamp duty and Transfer Tax – Transfer of ownership for any crypto assets will be subject to stamp duty and IMT. IMT is a property transaction tax that is payable by the buyer for the transfer of the asset;
- Gifts, death, and inheritances – subject to a 10% stamp duty if the amounts are deposited into a Portuguese bank or other investment institution in Portugal……”
Does getting professional help make it easier?
While you can’t get a crypto visa to Portugal, getting professional help you decide which Visa suits your requirements is the best investment you could make.
Relocating to a new country is supposed to be fun, and Portugal’s bureaucracy isn’t something most people would ideally label as fun. Book a consultation with Viv Europe and talk to experts about what you can do to legalize your crypto earnings in Portugal.
It’s also important to note that the exact details of how crypto assets will be taxed in Portugal may vary depending on the specific circumstances of the taxpayer and the type of asset involved. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to consult with a tax professional or legal advisor for specific advice regarding your individual tax situation.
What other types of Visas are there?
While there’s no crypto visa to Portugal, there are many others. We briefly mentioned a few at the beginning of the article, but let’s get into the details!
Check out the table below:
|Type of Visa||Specification|
|D1 Visa||Professional Subordinate Activity Visa allows you to work in a Portuguese company.|
|D2 Visa||The Business Visa helps you start or expand your existing business. You help the economy by contributing to taxes and creating new jobs.|
|D3 Visa||Highly Qualified Worker Visa is for experts with ample experience and growing careers.|
|D4 & D5 Visa||The Study Visa allows students to study at higher education institutions. The applicant must be enrolled in a Portuguese educational establishment.|
|D6 Visa||The Family Reunification Visa authorizes the citizen’s family with a residence permit to reside in Portugal.|
|D7 Visa||The Passive Income Visa is excellent for retirees and those with stable passive income every month.|
|Golden Visa||The Golden Visa is essentially a Residence Permit for Investment Activity. It is granted to investors who have met certain conditions and invested in Portugal. They have the legal right to live and work in Portugal and receive an EU Passport.|
So when are you coming to Portugal?
It’s one of the last countries with this incredible benefit, and, to top it off, it’s a wonderful place to live in.
The quality of life in Portugal is internationally recognized, the cost of living is low, and it’s ranked the 6th safest country in the world according to the Global Peace Index 2022.
Join the community via our Facebook Group – All About Portugal For Expats, and start planning your relocation. When you start, you’ll have lots of questions and concerns, and our group is the perfect place for them.
If you need help moving or applying for a visa, feel free to contact Viv Europe. Our professionals are always ready to help people make their Portugal dream a reality. Happy planning!