Is it Lawsuit time? (Processing times)

Given the excessive waiting times encountered by applicants for the Golden Visa in Portugal, some have resorted to legal action against the SEF. There have been instances where the courts have ordered the SEF to expedite the process, addressing delays deemed unreasonable (Source: Court Orders SEF to Grant Appointment to Golden Visa Investor Within 10 Days Following Unreasonable Delays - IMI - Investment Migration Insider (

Considering the inherent differences in the Golden Visa’s processing compared to other visa categories, it is somewhat expected for the processing times to vary. However, the current multi-year process, far exceeding the typical three-month window for other visas, appears grossly disproportionate.

One could argue convincingly that the SEF has been negligent in its duty, particularly given the previous judicial precedents where the courts sided with the investors. This raises a pertinent question about the feasibility of a class-action lawsuit against the SEF in response to these prolonged wait times.

However, I must note that as a non-expert in Portuguese law, I am unsure whether class action lawsuits are a viable legal recourse in Portugal. What do you think? Is it time for a class action lawsuit against SEF?

Lowkey, the SEF needs a wakeup call in regards to the ARI.

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Get a lawyer yeah

Possible roadblocks are that class actions aren’t really a thing in Portugal last I heard, and the sef is being replaced soon (when?) Anyway

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I searched for class action lawsuits in Portugal and found this result which sounds like they are possible?

But I’m obviously not a lawyer, let alone a Portuguese lawyer :person_shrugging:


Also not a lawyer, but I think class actions only apply to specific issues such as environmental law, public health etc. I remember reading through the criteria and concluding that SEF delays wouldn’t qualify.

In Portugal, a class-action lawsuit is currently not possible. However, I recently came across a suggestion on our forum that could help reduce the cost of individual lawsuits through coordination. The idea is to find a lawyer who can handle around 100 cases simultaneously, all sharing similarities, which could lead to significantly lower overall expenses. This approach has the potential to address the ongoing and future delays caused by the Portuguese government. However, as someone who proposed the idea of uniting to fight the Portuguese government a while back, I acknowledge that implementing the coordinated lawsuit concept may pose challenges for our forum members.


Good call,

Can you start a group & Spreadsheet.

Strength is in numbers, get the data/contacts, I’m sure there’s 1,000+ frustrated people, if we can find 100 of them, start DM-ing everyone who posted on the various topics about how they submitted in X and waiting X months, maybe we can get everyone to pledge to pitch in $100, get 100 to do this and a lawyer has a potential $10,000 pool of funds which you can collect so they can write opinions based on the various categories of the investors (e.g. those waiting 3 months, 12 months, etc.)

If we like what they say, maybe the chosen lawyer can ask say the 20 worst effected of the 100 who have been waiting 1+ year to each contribute $1,000 so they have $20,000 to take the fight up for us.

So first, we need to start a spreadsheet of names, application dates, time waited at step X, and try to see if people will contribute $100 to a cause. People might not be comfortable contributing to a random stranger on the internet, but maybe just a promise and the lawyer can take that as potential funding and we just pay the lawyer correctly.


I appreciate the suggestion of creating an online spreadsheet or another mechanism to bring together individuals who have been severely harmed by the SEF. However, there are some challenges. Firstly, people tend to be reluctant to share their emails publicly. Secondly, those who have truly suffered due to the SEF’s actions don’t frequently visit this forum, making real-time communication difficult. For instance, it took a week for you to be the only person who responded seriously to my proposal, which was essentially a repetition of another forum contributor’s suggestion a long time ago.

On a positive note, I have received private messages from several individuals who are eager to join forces in pursuing the lawsuit. I have already identified two lawyers who are willing to support our cause. If you would like to join us, we still have room for one more person. By initially uniting a small group, we can start gaining momentum and gradually convince more people to join our cause. If you feel comfortable, please leave your email address in my message box.