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SEF appointment

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Posts: 61
 KLC
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(@klc)
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Our lawyer just informed my significant other of his SEF appointment. It’s the first week of March… very exciting 

We have a rental for 4 months when we arrive. After the first of the year, we will be scouting out places in Portugal to see where we would like to be for the necessary year lease needed for residency. Once we decide on an area we will enlist the assist of a real estate agent with our property. We may buy or rent I do t know which way we may go. A rental is a good idea for the first year while we get a feel for Portugal and travel the country.

The obligation would only be for a year unlike a purchase of property which would be forever and a huge undertaking as we settle into a new country.

Our first place is in the center of town in the historic district of Setubal. Setubal had so much to offer….it’s a mix of locals and expats not too touristy like Lisbon. I like being able to get in a train and be in the city of Lisbon in 40 minutes. 

We like being near the ocean, walkability to cafes, coffee shops, shops, services, entertainment. We will not have a car and will be relying on public transportation. 

It’ll be an exciting time with a few challenges along the way I am sure.We are ready to become part of the community!! 

 

 

15 Replies




Posts: 257
Community Member
(@antonio_f)
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Joined: 8 months ago

Renting during the first year is ideal if you don't know the country. This way you can rent in different parts of the country and know it better. There's also the possibility (not yet very usual) of renting with a buying option, where a part of the rent is deducted on the property price.

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 RonM
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(@ronm)
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We’ll be coming to Lisbon next month for our SEF appointment.  Hoping to do a day trip to Setúbal.  Not been there before but understand that it is lovely.

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2 Replies
Community Member
(@antonio_f)
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@ronm From Lisbon, you can reach Setúbal by train or bus.

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 KLC
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(@klc)
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Posts: 61

@ronm we just arrived and it’s lovely. We are just getting settled I like being near the ocean and close to the city center!

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Posts: 54
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(@davidb)
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Joined: 7 months ago

Still struggling to get an appointment for my wife.  I called last week and was told that the agency is not doing family reunification appointments at this time but will do them again at some stage.  Hardly reassuring.  How can they just stop an entire class of appointment? I have a lawyer also trying to make the appointment.  The lawyer is now exploring legal action.  Apparently, you can go to administrative court and have family reunification rights granted by judicial decision.  I am waiting for the projected costs of that before plunging in.  If it is only a few thousand I would do the same thing with the driving licence exchange and Numero de utente.  The delays here are shocking.  With SEF, it cannot even be termed a delay, they have simply suspended family reunification appointments. 

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Community Member
(@christopher)
Joined: 1 year ago

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Posts: 19

@davidb 

Call SEF today for I have been calling for months and got an appointment for January. December is already full. I redialed for over 1.5 hours before I got somebody to make an appointment, just keep trying. The next time they open may not be for many months for in July the said the where not accepting until November.

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 KLC
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(@klc)
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@christopher Wow glad you were able to get an appointment

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(@davidb)
Joined: 7 months ago

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@christopher Thanks.  I followed your annoying redial strategy on Skype and it produced results.  After a 21 min wait, I got through on the landline. Then, after 4 mins on hold, I was able to make the appointment and received the confirmation email.  Fortunately, I'm  in Coimbra and managed to get it scheduled on the morning of December 27th.

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Posts: 85
 JAR
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(@jar)
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Joined: 2 years ago

@davidb Very frustrating, I know. Your post doesn't say where you currently live, but coming from someone who moved here in April from CA, I would strongly advise you to take a breath and understand that things move more slowly here. It is NOT a criticism, it is something that you will need to expect (in most situations). If your expectations are that things move quickly here, I would disavow that immediately. The slower pace is part of the immense beauty and charm of Portugal--if you can look at it this way, it will help to reduce your stress! Best of luck!

 

 

 

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5 Replies
Community Member
(@davidb)
Joined: 7 months ago

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Posts: 54

@jar I appreciate the advice.  I am from the UK originally, although I also have EU citizenship.  I managed to get a Numero de Utente recently by a combination of complaining to the ombudsman and the prospect of legal action.  My lawyer says that we can go to administrative court against SEF and get a result in a month.  The case is open and shut.  Personally, Portugal is not my favorite place and I need my wife to get registered properly, so the citizenship clock starts ticking. The quicker she does that, the faster we can go somewhere else.  Thus far, I have not been all that impressed with the beauty and charm of Portugal.  I grew up in Verona and spent 3 years living in Firenze (Florence), so it takes a lot to impress me. I'm only here for the combo of NHR and fairly rapid and reliable citizenship pathway for my non-EU spouse.  In my view, the functionaries in many offices here are using the epidemic as a blanket excuse to be inefficient and basically not do their jobs. If others are happy to accept that, then that's fine by me.  However, I am not and as a early retiree (39) I still have plenty of energy and ample time to pursue remedies that will inflict inconvenience on the people causing the delays.  One would hope they might just learn from the experience and modify their behavior.

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Premium Member
(@jeanne)
Joined: 2 years ago

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Posts: 339

@davidb   Interesting,- does Italy not offer a path to citizenship for non-EU spouses?

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VIP Member
(@old-bloke)
Joined: 13 years ago

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Posts: 2122

@jeanne 

It does and it appears to be a lot faster process, from 1 to 3 years of marriage to an Italian citizen. Whereas for the spouse to get Portuguese citizenship will take at least 5 years of residency in Portugal.

I've only had a quick look but it looks like David's spouse could get Italian citizenship after 3 years of marriage without even living in Italy.

However whilst David has posted he is both a UK and EU citizen that has lived in Italy, he hasn't actually posted that he is an Italian citizen so it may not apply. Many UK citizens mistakenly think they are also EU citizens because they have an EU model passport.

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Community Member
(@davidb)
Joined: 7 months ago

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Posts: 54

@old-bloke Alas, when I lived in Italy first my parents and then me decided it wasn't worth the hassle of getting Italian nationality.  At that time, we all had UK and Irish passports that were both EU. So no, I'm not Italian. Therefore, I would have to live in Italy myself for 4 years to become a citizen plus endure another 2+ year application nightmare. Subsequently, my wife would have to wait another 3-4 years from the point I was granted citizenship + her own processing time.  It could easily take a decade to twelve years and for much of that time I'd be exposed to Italian taxes. Nope. Also, I know Ireland is an option for 3 years plus processing, but tax there is too much of an issue.  That and the weather.  Portugal was selected as the option that was the least painful.

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Premium Member
(@jeanne)
Joined: 2 years ago

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Posts: 339

@davidb  Then I hope this new plan works out for you and your wife. And I agree, when it comes to beauty, Florence is in a class of its own.

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