What your tax obligations are

Independent Worker

On this page you will find information on the tax and social security obligations of a self-employed person. An individual who is a tax resident in Portugal and who pursues an activity as a self-employed person either in Portugal or in other countries is obliged to register his activity in Portugal and fulfil certain obligations. Failure to comply with these obligations will result in the payment of fines.

Registration process as self-employee in Portugal

A self-employed person who is resident in Portugal must comply with several tax and social security obligations. Below, we present the steps you should follow.



In order to access your personal area you must obtain a password (necessary for step 02). This access password can be requested electronically, which will be sent within 5 working days to your tax domicile registered in the Tax Authority system (for example, if you are still registered as a non-tax resident, this password will be sent to your address abroad, or to the Portuguese address of your tax representative, if you have appointed one). Alternatively, this password may be personally requested at a Tax Office, in which case you will obtain the password on the same day.


Statement of beginning of activity

The declaration of beginning of the activity must be submitted before the beginning of the activity. This declaration must be submitted in your personal area of the Portuguese Tax Authorities’ website. The submission of this declaration at a date later than the commencement of the activity is subject to the payment of a fine.




If you are not a Portuguese national and do not have a social security identification number, you must apply for this number as soon as you start your activity.



In order to comply with your obligations with Social Security (see step 07), you should request to register in “Segurança Social Direta”, your personal area in the Portuguese Social Security website.



The self-employees are obliged to issue invoices for each service rendered or goods sold. As a general rule, these invoices must be issued within 5 days.
These invoices may be issued in the personal area of the self-employee Portuguese Tax Authorities’ website or through any certified invoicing programme. However, in the latter case, the worker is obliged to submit the said invoices on the Finance Portal by the 12th day of the month following that in which the invoice was issued.
If you choose to issue invoices from your personal area of the Portuguese Tax Authorities’ website. we are available to send you a document with instructions on how to fill in the respective fields and issue these invoices.



As a general rule, self-employed workers without organised accounts and who do not carry out import or export operations are exempt from VAT if they did not achieve, in the previous calendar year, a turnover exceeding 12,500 Euros (or estimate that they do not have this turnover in the first year of activity).
When subject to VAT, workers are obliged to submit a periodic VAT declaration (to be submitted monthly or quarterly) and to submit a recapitulative statement if they provide services or carry out intra-Community transfers of goods. The VAT regimes vary from case to case, and it is important to check which regime applies in your particular case. We are available to send you a document with instructions explaining how to fill in the fields for the VAT return and the recapitulative statement.




The self-employed are, as a general rule, subject to social security in Portugal. In certain situations, self-employees may be exempt or excluded from contributions (e.g. accumulation of activities, pensioners, etc.).
The first enrolment in the scheme for self-employed workers only takes effect on the first day of the 12th month after the start of activity, which means that the person is only subject to the payment of contributions from the 13th month onwards.
The contributions due will correspond to the application of the rate of 21.4% to the contribution base (determined according to the income received). When a person has not earned income in a given quarter, he or she will pay contributions amounting to 20 Euros per month in the following quarter.

In addition, self-employed workers, when subject to the payment of contributions, are required to submit a quarterly declaration by the last day of January, April, July and October. This quarterly declaration must be submitted in your personal area of Segurança Social Direta.  We are available to send you a document with instructions explaining how to complete and submit this declaration.

Our Fees

Fees are subject to VAT at the rate of 23% (due on the top of the fee amount). For more information on how to contract our services – here.


For the assistance with steps 01 to 04

EUR 250


For sending instructions to explain how to issue Invoices through the Portal das Finanças in your specific case

EUR 50


For sending instructions to explain how to prepare and issue the (1) VAT Return; (2) Recapitulative Statement; and (3) Social Security Statement.

EUR 70 / per each type of return

Time of completion

As a general rule, all services referred to on this page are performed within one business day. The preparation of instructions may take a few days, depending on the workflow and complexity of the Client’s specific situation.

Contact us

We are happy to answer your questions and make your journey in Portugal a pleasant one.

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