Portuguese Citizenship application after 5 years of Golden Visa

Hi @susanayang and all, three questions on naturalisation:

  • Are all persons above age 60 exempt from the language test requirement?

  • For the one who takes the language test, can one take it even before applying for the GV?

  • When finally applying for naturalization, apart from handing in the A2 test certificate, is there any personal interview or test to know the culture, history, such?

Please write here or PM, very appreciating to learn.

Thank you very much for this complete guide. I truly appreciate it. It has answered all my questions and shed additional light on the issues surrounding residence and citizenship for Portugal. I am aiming for citizenship so I have a road map

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I’ve learn a lot about GV and reading almost everything. I will apply for it in few months. For children, if you don’t intend to live in portugal in near future, no need to apply for GV, they can get citizenship after your naturalization “Children aged under 18 may acquire Portuguese citizenship by declaration when a parent is naturalised” BUT (this is the most important part for me also and i couldn’t get any info yet) my sons are 7 and 9. If the process takes 5 years, it is OK, but obviously it will take much longer. if i got my first RP in 1,5 year after application (biometrics etc. etc.) and after 5 years i couldn’t learn how long does it take to get citizenship, (lets say 1 year) my son will be 9 yearsold + 2 (first RP) + 5 year (processing time) + 1 year (citizenship) = 17 yearsold. Under 18 but still if there will be more delay he will be over 18. So i will most probably apply for GV for my 9 yearsold son. As much as i understood, if your child is 3-4 yearsold, no need to apply for GV and deal with 7 days stay and language test etc. But as i see none of us here sure how long this process takes from inital application to citizenship.

Susan, i am reading your valuable posts and thank you very much for them. It looks like you know more than us. Do you know how long does citizenship process takes after 5 years ? And if our kids younger than 18 (without golden visa), will apply after our naturalization , do you know how long does it take for them to get citizenship ?

Hi Susan, may I have a question on over-18 children for GV. I understanding that when the application is submitted and renewed, they must be (1) unmarried, (2) under my financial support and (3) under full-time education. My question is, before the second renewal (ie only fulfilled 4 years’s residency under the GV) they are no longer studying full-time, how can they fulfill the 5th year of residency requirement before eligible for applying permanent residency? Many thanks!

HI Andrew,

Sorry that I have missed your email earlier. I am not sure I understand your question correctly.
In order to renew for the GV, your kids must filful the 3 criteria above. for education as long as the school’s declaration letter say they are studying, it doesn’t necessarily need to have to mentioned full time.

They don’t need to be under bachelor or master program. There are also many short programs in the world that they can take. Many consider a 15 - 20 hours / week program is a full time program - for example studying Portuguese in Portugal. There is always a way to make it happen and not lost the renewal.

After the 2nd renewal, they only need to renew again at year 6, at that time, they can choose to renew into a normal permanent residency program which doesn’t have the requirement of being single, dependent and studying.

I hope that clarifies your doubt.


Thank you for a great summary of the various options. With regard to Option 4, applying for citizenship/nationality, at the end of 5 years. Is there also a requirement that a person demonstrate sufficient ties to the Portuguese community? I’ve read in a few separate posts elsewhere that this can be a very subjective requirement that may not be a simple hurdle to overcome.

Hi Sortiz,

Thanks for your questions. Yes, it is one of the requirements for applying citizenship. And it is a little vague as in a lot of government info/ services.

Your investment in Portugal is one tie to the Portugal, and then if you rent a place in Portugal for long/ short term stay, would be another tie. And your knowledge of the language is another tie. So the lawyer would need to get all these for you, and ask you to prepare materials/ documents for the application.

Of course, if you live in Portugal, that would be great. But If you are not living here, then you need to have other ties such as the ones I have mentioned above.

It is not as simple as the GV process, but once you are in the club (GV, other residence program), you could always find a way to establish those ties with a bit of an effort.

HI Prof David,

sorry I missed your message. The citizenship approval takes 1 - 2 years. Please note it is not as simple as getting your kids the citizenship after your naturalisation. It can’t be done like that. They won’t be able to get their citizenship just because you become a citizen. I can’t stress enough that getting citizenship is not as easy/ simple as some of you think. And it is not a automatic process that when the parents become a citizen, their kids under 18 can become a citizen without cause. The process is not that easy, especially if you/ your family are not living in Portugal.

I suggest all my clients to have their kids applying for the GV as well. And even with GV, it is not easy for kids to apply for citizenship if they don’t live in Portugal, but it will be easier, because they have at least 5 years of residency.

HI Mik,

Sorry I missed your message earlier. To answer your question:

  • there is no exemption for those over 60 years old
  • yes, you can take the language test before
  • No other test apart from the language test

One more item. Does anyone know how an unmarried couple living together for more than 2 years can apply together (via a single 350k investment)? Is it part of the family renunciation piece? Also anyone know the Portuguese statute that addresses this? And on a practical matter does this delay processing?

Hi Susan,
Thanks so much for the detailed explanation for the various options after 5 years of GV. My wife and I are in process of filing our GV (via investment fund) application.

We have sons who are currently 30, 28 and 24 years old and independent. Unfortunately we are unable to afford GV applications for all, but were told there may be a way for them to obtain future Portuguese citizenship via family unification. Do you believe this is possible (assuming they establish ties to Portugal by living there, language proficiency etc) or would they have to establish 5 years of residency in order to qualify.

Thanks again.

Hi, have to live together more than 3 years. You need to make a declaration that you have lived together for 3 years. under the family reunification.

The main investor can submit the application this year (if you want to catch the timeline), and the when you have the 3 years, then the other partner can apply as dependent.

Yeah, that’s a lot of GVs to apply.

To my understanding, they have to live here to get the 5 years of residency and then natualize themselves to get the Portuguese citizenship. It is not a automatic process for kids that they will get the citizenship, when their parents get the citizenship.

Hello susan,

I’ve been researcing the Golden Visa for a very long time and honestly this is the best information about the process I’ve ever seen on the internet. Thank you so much.

I have 2 questions: Are you an immigration lawyer ? Does Portugal infrom the client’s native country after granting thier citizenship ? I’m wondering for the people who thier native country won’t allow dual citizenship.

Hi @susanayang . Thanks for all the valuable information so far.

I have a two month old. So best case we can apply for citizenship when he is 6-7 years old. Will he be required to pass the A2 test to be eligible or is there an exemption? Do you see any point of adding him in the GV application?

Considering it might be tough to travel with my baby at this point (and hence spouse), if I decide to apply alone, how long will it take my wife to get the citizenship after she gets her residency? Does residency allow her to work freely in EU or only Portugal?

Thanks. Any recos on a good immigration lawyer for Portugal GV?

Hi Moath,

Thanks for your encouraging words.

We are an immigrating firms that specializes in golden Visa and offers a one-stop shop solution for it. Our strength is to analysis the investment options that is right for you. And centrally coordinately the whole property buying/ fund subscription process + documentation gathering and application submission process.

To your questions about whether or not they inform the client’s native country, unfortunately, I don’t have a definitely answer for this.


We recommend all our clients to apply the GV for their under 18 years old children. There is a adapted test for kids under 10 years old. And the test are made to be easily passed.

You can apply first, and then add your spouse and baby later. She would still need to count 5 years from the time she gets her resident card. The resident card only allows her to work / live in Portugal, not other EU countries.

You are the best. Always such helpful information.