SEF appointment - can we do it ourselves? – Moving to Portugal – Expats Portugal Community Forum

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SEF appointment - can we do it ourselves?

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(@jordan_zimmerman)
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I searched and didn't see this...

We have our SEF appointments set for May. The attorney who helped us with the D7 said she can help us with the SEF appointment for an additional fee. Can anyone tell us why we would need assistance? I thought they speak English there and that the process isn't complicated. Do we need the assistance of an attorney? I know that Eimigrante offers this service too. This is an important appointment and we don't want to make any mistakes.

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(@hartmill)
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It depends on which office you go to, but when we went there was no English spoken.

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(@pamalcobaca)
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I went to Leiria and the woman who dealt with me didn't speak English, but also I'm not sure if they're letting someone go in with you at the moment due to Covid. My husband doesn't speak Portuguese so he had to wait in the waiting room while I did the paperwork for both of us, he just came in to have his photo taken and sign his name.

There was a woman waiting outside who had brought someone with her to help, but they sent her away.

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(@jordan_zimmerman)
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@pamalcobaca thank you - what area was this?

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(@pamalcobaca)
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(@hayls)
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@jordan_zimemrman, I had my SEF appointment in Viseu and the officer didn't speak English but was a very approachable and kind person. Of course my husband is local and he was allowed in with me. But this was just before Covid. Most offices allow only the applicant in now, but since you're appointment is in May, hopefully the situation will be better and you can bring your attorney if you choose to get one. 

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(@peggyl)
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They say they don't speak English but I just have to wonder if employees at the immigration office would have been hired if they did not have foreign language skills. For Example, My husbands first appointment the agent shook her head "no" that she did not speak English. Two weeks later at the second appointment with the extra paper that we had been missing, She was speaking English very well to the person in front of us. 

You do NOT need an attorney or anyone else to go with you. If you have a friend who speaks Portuguese, they would be just as helpful but really, I did not speak Portuguese and I did fine. You have a list of all the required documents. Take those and every other piece of paper you have relating to your move here. Take a box if you need to. But keep the required documents separate. When your number is called, put all those documents on the counter. They will look at them, they will scan them in the computer, they will have you stand & put your fingertips on the big machine that also takes your picture. The paper that you are given to fill out with your mailing address, make sure the address is correct. Your card will be mailed to you. 

@peggyL

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 JAR
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(@jar)
Joined: 8 months ago

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@peggyl

Very sound advice--with all of the steps in the visa process. Bring more docs! I was glad we did when we had our appt at VFS in San Francisco. They took a few things from us that weren't on the list that Ei Migrante had prepared for us.

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(@peggyl)
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@jar

Good advice! I suggest you keep all of the documents that you gather together in an accordion or similar file folder so the different categories can be slightly organized. Separate items into finance/banking; housing; identity (birth certif, passports, atestados); Health; etc. The folder goes with you everywhere and you will always have whatever paper the ask for. And things will be less stressful for you. How exciting to have so many expats joining us here in Portugal.

@peggyL

 

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