The Portuguese government will launch, as part of the Simplex + 2018, a new "card of citizenship" (cartão de cidadão) for foreigners residing in Portugal, which will include tax identification, social security and the national health system. A small revolution is preparing for expatriates living in Portugal. Until now as a foreigner it was necessary to report to the different administrations (Finanças, Segurança social and SNS) in order to register, the services not communicating with each other. It will now be a thing of the past as expatriates will now be able to apply for a cartão de cidadão specifically for foreigners living in Portugal. What are the characteristics of this citizenship card for foreigners ? Where will it be possible to register for it ? Bob, the expatriate assistor in Portugal, tells you all about the new cartão de cidadão for expatriates living in Portugal.
Portugal lagging behind the modernization of its administration
Meeting all the residency requirements in Portugal is not an easy process. Many trips in the various administrations that waste time and especially many heads to gather all the documents, so that foreigners settling in Portugal sometimes feel disarmed. This is exactly why the Portuguese government will create a "citizenship card" for foreigners living on Lusitanian lands. In the document published under the Simplex + 2018, this card will include tax identification numbers, social security numbers and National Health System (SNS).
"Nowadays, when someone does the residency process, once you get it, you have to go to the branches of Finance, Social Security and the National Health Service," he said. Secretary of State Graça Fonseca. According to him with this new card, the foreign citizen will be given all these numbers at the same time and in the same place as the issuance of the authorization in question, considerably reducing the time and efforts made.
"Currently, the process is relatively complicated and involves several trips," explains Graça Fonseca. The new "citizen card" for foreigners will be handed over to the Foreign and Frontier Service (SEF), but its bureaucratic functioning will not be the sole responsibility of this entity. According to the project manager, this will be a "process of intercommunication between the different parties", from Finance to Social Security.
Cartão de Cidadão for foreigners in Portugal: a false good idea?
Can the new card add a degree of complexity and delay this home acquisition process? With no less than 4 different administrations to work together the question arises indeed. The Portuguese administration is already drowning in delays due to budget cuts and the decline of staff in the various services. The Secretary of State rejects this conclusion and says that the measure presented on Wednesday will "have no impact on the process of authorization to stay." Graça Fonseca also points out that, in comparison with the slow pace with which foreigners have come forward, measures are also being prepared.
Simplex is a program of administrative simplification and modernization of public services, born in 2006. Over the last decade, these measures have reduced the number of journeys and waiting times, as well as the removal of obligations, declarations, annexes and forms, guarantees the government.