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Obtaining Your NIF Number in Portugal – A Step-by-Step Guide by INLIS Accounting firm

Updated: Mar 25

how to apply nif at financas

Navigating Success: Your Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Right Accounting Firm in Lisbon for Business Excellence. Are you planning to move to Portugal? One of the first things you'll need to take care of is registering with the tax office to ensure a smooth financial experience. Today, we'll explain what an NIF is and why it's essential for residents in Portugal. If you've recently relocated to Portugal and wish to work or do business here, obtaining a tax file number or NIF ("Número de Identificação Fiscal") is one of the initial steps. It's also known as a contribution number ("número de contribuinte"). Regardless of your nationality, having a personal tax number (NIF) is necessary for engaging in legal activities or conducting business in Portugal. To obtain a Portuguese NIF, you'll need to submit an application to the tax authorities. It's important to note that the process may vary for EU and non-EU citizens. Need to Know Everything About NIF

The NIF, also referred to as the Portuguese individual tax identification number, is a personal identification number used for tax-related matters in Portugal. It is required for employment and official activities within Portuguese territory and is issued by the Portuguese tax authorities. It is crucial to apply for an NIF as soon as possible, even for short-term residency in Portugal.

Each person is assigned a unique nine-digit NIF, which should be provided in all tax-related communication with the tax authorities. The number is displayed on tax cards and Portuguese citizenship identity cards. Who needs a NIF? Having an NIF is essential for anyone residing in Portugal, including official residents, citizens, and foreign non-residents. While obtaining an NIF is not legally required in Portugal, not having one can restrict you from performing certain important operations. Without an NIF, you won't be able to engage in activities like purchasing property, opening a bank account, obtaining a loan, or signing a mobile phone contract in Portugal. It is therefore highly recommended to acquire an NIF to ensure smoother transactions and access to various services in the country. Non-resident or temporary resident If you are a non-resident or temporary resident in Portugal, you may be initially assigned a temporary or provisional taxpayer number (NIF) by an accounting firm. This temporary NIF will later be replaced with a permanent NIF number after a few months or once you acquire permanent residency in Portugal.

How to apply Nif in Portugal

How do I apply for a NIF? Getting a NIF for residents of Portugal There are several ways to apply for an NIF:

  1. In person: Visit the local tax office known as "Finanças" or go to a citizen's shop, "loja do cidadão," if it is more convenient for you. Another option is to reach out to an accounting firm in Lisbon, such as INLIS Consulting.

  2. Online application (for businesses): If you're a business, you can apply for an NIF online through the Finanças website (available in Portuguese only). Please note that currently, the online application option is not available for individuals.

  3. Seek professional assistance: You can also enlist the help of a lawyer or an accountant to handle the application process on your behalf.

But here's the exciting part! There is now an official online service provided by Inlis Consulting that allows you to effortlessly obtain your brand new NIF number with just a click of a button. For more information on this convenient service, visit Inlis Consulting. Getting a NIF for non-residents of Portugal

If you are a non-resident of Portugal and require a Portuguese taxpayer number (NIF) while still outside the country, such as when purchasing property, you have the option of obtaining a temporary NIF through a Portuguese lawyer or financial representative who is willing to act on your behalf. At Inlis Consulting, we provide Compliance services where we can represent you and assist in obtaining your NIF number. With our expertise and support, you can smoothly navigate the process of acquiring your NIF number even if you are not physically present in Portugal.

Getting a NIF for non-EU residents

Non-EU citizens who are pursuing residency in Portugal and making a significant investment in the country's economy through programs like the Golden Visa or the Job Seeker Visa have the benefit of being able to apply for a Portuguese NIF simultaneously with their visa application. This streamlined process enables applicants to acquire their Portuguese taxpayer number (NIF) alongside their visa, making it easier for them to integrate into the Portuguese economy and simplify administrative procedures.

What documents do I need to apply for a NIF?


  • The necessary documents for obtaining a Portuguese NIF (taxpayer number) have minimal requirements.

  • A valid photo ID is required, such as a passport or a scanned and signed copy if using a representative in Portugal.

  • Non-EU citizens must present their passports as a mandatory requirement.

  • EU, EEA, or Swiss citizens can provide either a passport or a citizen's identity card.

In some cases, individuals without a passport or official photo ID may use their birth certificate as an alternative document for obtaining a Portuguese NIF.

Proof of residency

When applying for a Portuguese NIF while in Portugal, it is necessary to provide proof of your residential address. This can be demonstrated through documents like a utility bill or a rental contract.

If you are applying for a NIF from abroad with the assistance of a lawyer or tax representative, you will need to provide a document that grants them permission to act on your behalf. This document must be signed by an attorney and translated into Portuguese. NIF number all taken care of

We hope that the information provided has helped clarify the process of setting up in Portugal with regard to the tax office. If you're interested in additional information on becoming a freelancer or self-employed, we encourage you to explore the resources available at Inlis Consulting, an accounting firm located in Lisbon. We can provide valuable insights and guidance on establishing yourself as a freelancer or self-employed individual in Portugal.

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