Family member submission

Hi new member here. I’m the spouse of the main applicant. According to the answers by different lawyers, I might have to submit my criminal record not only from the country of residence, but also from my country of origin. The latter one will take at least 2 months. My question is, does only the main applicant’s submission date matter if it makes in before the law changes? Can family documents be submitted anytime afterwards, as soon as obtained?

This was never requested in our case, all they need is a certificate from a country in which you have resided for the past one year. Unless, there are any new changes recently. However, as a safe bet you can obtain the certificate from the country of origin if the SEF official asks you about that during the biometrics appointment. In any case, you can always ask for extensions until you are able to obtain all the documents requested…

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The police certificate from the country of origin is not required for the main applicant, but is required as mandatory for family members (yes, I know what you want to say, but it is true…)

You have 3 options:

  • wait until all docs are ready and submit family applicants straight after the main applicant - NOT RECOMMENDED due to the imminent law change;
  • submit the main applicant now, but then submit the family later as soon as their full docs are ready;
  • submit the main applicant now, and then straight away the family (as in option 1) but with some docs missing. You then ‘top up’ the missing docs as they become ready. This is the RECOMMENDED option.

Thanks for replying. May I ask when was your application?

Thank you for your thorough reply! Will they start to process the main applicant first or they will wait for all family members documents fully submitted?

The way it works online on the SEF ARI Portal is that you first submit your main applicant and pay the DUC.
Then you can add your family members straight away under the main applicant menu.

SEF will not wait for any family applications, as this is entirely up to the main applicant to decide who and when they want to ‘regroup’ with.

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We have a document to update and we have access to the SEF portal. However, I don’t see how to add the missing/updated document. Am I missing something?


I think you cannot add anything while in the “Em Análise” status.
From what I heard SEF turns the status back into “Aguarde Envio” in case of a missing document.
But if you want to be proactive you’d need to submit off-line via your lawyer.

Ah, okay, makes sense during “Em Analise.” Thanks.

Our lawyer says just wait. If I want to do it myself do I just e-mail the information to SEF?

Which document is missing?
Is it one of mandatory ones, marked with * on the portal?

Yes, if the law is changing soon it’s best to submit the main applicant before that happens. The law does not affect the right to family reunification so family applications can be submitted after the law changes.