What exactly is the Portugal D6 Visa?
Portugal prides itself on being a welcoming country that cherishes family ties and makes it easy for families to be together, even if they come from different parts of the world. If you are a foreign national living in Portugal and you want to bring your family to join you, you can apply for a family reunification visa.
Once you have legal residency in Portugal, either through another visa or as a settled EU citizen, you can apply to bring your spouse, partner, or family to live with you in Portugal through the Family Reunification Visa (D6).
Any of your family members that are granted this visa will have the same residency rights and duration as you.
"Portugal is a country that values family, community, and tradition. It's a place where you can slow down and enjoy the simple pleasures of life, like a good meal with loved ones or a stroll along the beach. It's a reminder that family is what truly matters in life." - José Mourinho
Which members of your family are eligible?
The Family Reunification Visa in Portugal offers great flexibility to bring over several categories of family members, including a spouse or partner (see below for further clarification), your children (including adopted children), children or adopted children of your spouse or partner, and dependents under your custody, such as parents or siblings.
Some information to keep in mind for spouses or partners:
While having a marriage certificate can make things easier, the D6 visa isn't limited to married couples. "Stable unions" are also recognized by Portuguese law, granting non-married couples the same rights as married couples if they have been cohabiting and living together for two years or more. It is important to note that the "stable union" concept applies regardless of sexual orientation.
Proving a stable union can be much more complicated than providing a marriage certificate, but some documents that may help include:
A declaration affirming that you've lived together at the same address for the past two years or more.
Utility bills and other documents registered to the same address.
A registered domestic partnership (if recognized in your country).
If proving family ties is difficult, consider applying for another visa, such as the D7 visa.
Similar to the main resident, the family member(s) also possess certain rights such as access to national healthcare (provided they have a SNS number), the freedom to work and study in Portugal, and travel within the Schengen Area.
Applying for the Family Reunification Visa
The resident in Portugal must initiate the application process for the Family Reunification Visa. The application can be submitted through SEF (Serviço de Estrangeiros e Fronteiras) either personally or via an attorney, but it requires a prior appointment. As appointment times may take several months, it is worthwhile to explore if there are quicker appointment slots available at SEF offices in other cities or towns.
Whether your family member is inside or outside the country will determine the documents required for the application. This means that if a family member is on a different visa, such as a Schengen Tourist visa, they can be brought into Portugal, and the application process for the Family Reunification Visa can be initiated while they are present, rather than waiting for the D6 Visa to be granted.
In case the family member is already in Portugal, a proof of entry will be necessary to demonstrate that they have entered the country legally, and their stay does not extend beyond the authorized visa duration.
Required Documents and Criteria
During your appointment, you will need to provide the following documents for the person with residency in Portugal:
Residence documents of the family member with residency in Portugal
NIF number of the family member with residency in Portugal
Proof of subsistence (copy of a recent Portuguese bank statement)
Proof of address (property deed, rental contract, or Atestado de Residência)
You will also need to provide the following documents for the family member requesting residency in Portugal:
Criminal records certificate (issued within the last 3 months)
Proof of family ties:
Marriage certificate or proof of cohabitation for couples
Birth certificate, proof of economic dependence and proof of educational enrolment in Portugal in the case of children who are studying in Portugal
Certificate of guardianship in the case of minor brothers and sisters
Private health insurance policy
Proof of subsistence
As with all visas, SEF's priority is to ensure that the person(s) will not become a burden on the Portuguese state. Therefore, you must prove that you have sufficient income to support any family members you bring over. This means that your income is at least equal to or greater than the Portuguese minimum wage (€9,120 per annum in 2023) and you also have at least 50% more (€4,560) to support a second person.
Documents in a language other than Portuguese must be accompanied by a certified translation. This translation is valid for around 3 months on average, therefore do not rush to get the documents certified until you have a confirmed appointment with SEF.
Eligibility for Portuguese Citizenship
Coming to Portugal on the Family Reunification Visa puts you on the path to Portuguese citizenship: after living in Portugal for 5 years, you are eligible for permanent residency and can apply for Portuguese citizenship, which includes a Portuguese passport.
In most cases, the D6 visa provides the simplest option for non-EU citizens who want to join their family members in Portugal. While the application process can be confusing and challenging at times, it is worth the effort to be reunited with loved ones and enjoy life in Portugal together. If you need help with obtaining the D6 visa, please don't hesitate to contact us. Our team of experts is dedicated to providing personalized assistance to ensure a smooth and successful application process every time!