Can your tax representative and your tax preparer be different people?

For the past year, I’ve used to register my NIF and use as my tax/fiscal representative while I wasn’t living in Portugal (paid €99). I bought property since then and now need to file taxes (to pay for property tax). The tax accountant that I’m connected with charges €350 to be a tax representative, but charges separately to file taxes.

My question is, can I (and should I) continue using as my tax representative since it is cheaper. And then just pay my tax accountant to prepare and file my taxes for me separately? Can they be different people or do/should they be the same person?

That’s what I do. My accountant prepares & files my PT tax, but my NIF is registered to my address in Portugal.
Hope this helps.

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To answer your direct question - yes, your tax rep and your tax accountant could be two different unrelated entities.

However, there’s two other points you may want to be aware of:

  • You are not required to maintain a tax rep at all if you register yourself for online notifications in the Portal das Financas, unless you exceed certain conditions on ‘economic activity in Portugal’ (which by the sounds of it you do not exceed)
  • You do NOT need to “file taxes” in order to pay the property tax, assuming that by the “property tax” you mean IMI = Imposto Municipal sobre Imóveis. All you need to do there is to get your IMI bill from the Portal das Financas and pay it on time (or better still just set up a DD once and forget about it :slight_smile:

And just one final observation - if you actually ‘move’ to Portugal and change your tax address in the system (aka your NIF address) to Portugal, then you would be expected to “file taxes” as a PT-taxpayer, however from that moment you’d no longer require a tax rep by definition!

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However, it is my understanding that if you do not live in PT and own a house or car in PT, you still need a fiscal representative. If you live in PT and own a house/car, you do not need a representative.

That is not a correct understanding.
Look up other threads for conclusive discussion on the requirements for tax rep, e.g.:

In short, tax rep is mandatory if you are ‘economically active’ in Portugal while being non-resident. And no, owning a house and/or a car in Portugal does not count as ‘economically active’. Renting out a house does count though obviously.

Thank you for the reply! This is the clearest explanation I’ve gotten around tax representatives and accountants, and it makes sense. And thanks for the additional clarification that economic activity is the primary determining factor, not ownership of a home (which in my case is not currently rented out).

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