If you are from the EU, Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Iceland and wish to remain in Portugal over a period of three months or more, you should request from the city council of your residence area a document called “Certificado de Registo”(Registration Certificate). This is the document that will formalize your right to be a resident in Portugal.
Once you held a registration certificate for five years, you are entitled to request a “Certificado de Residência Permanente” (Permanent Residence Certificate). This document will be issued by SEF, the Foreigners and Borders Service. In one of the SEF offices you will be able to collect the necessary requirements to make this request.
In case you are citizen from other country than the ones mentioned above (all other situations), and you pretend to become a Portuguese resident, you must have a “residence visa” that is suitable for the purpose of your stay. The “Residence Visa” allows you to enter Portugal territory with the aim of requesting a “Temporary residence permit” from the SEF, Serviço de Estrangeiros e Fronteiras (Foreigners and Borders Service).
Temporary Residence Permit is valid for one year period, starting from the day the actual document is issued. The document can be renewed for successive periods of two years. Only after five years as holder of a Temporary Residence Permit, you may finally request the Permanent Residence Permit. For this requirement you must make an appointment by phone or through the SEF website, www.sef.pt