Our client base includes both individuals and companies, resident and non-resident of Portugal, but our typical client is often either a foreign non-resident with property here who needs to ensure that his or her fiscal obligations are taken care of with the minimum of fuss at a reasonable cost, or those who have decided to make Portugal their home on retirement.
We assist the former by advising on tax issues affecting them as a non-resident both in respect of income from property rental, capital gains on sale and taxes on inheritance or gifting of the property to family members.
In respect of the foreign resident, again we can advise and assist on declaration of both Portuguese and foreign income (pensions, interest, royalties and dividends etc) liaising with their home tax authority if necessary to ensure that duplication of taxation is avoided by use of double tax treaties.
1. Fiscal Representative
On the 5th May 2011, the European Court of Justice ruled that Portugal can no longer force EU nationals to appoint a fiscal representative in Portugal, as this violates the rights of free circulation of people and capital. However, individuals or companies who reside outside the EU must still appoint / retain a fiscal representative.
We strongly recommend that all property owners, including EU residents, appoint a fiscal representative to ensure that they receive any correspondence relating to their individual or property taxes.
Anyone without a representative will automatically have the Lisbon tax office appointed instead and all their tax correspondence will initially be sent to the Lisbon tax office. In addition as the law stands, if an individual or company does not have a representative they lose the right to receive tax department notifications which can put their property at risk.
Our firm can provide Fiscal Representation service at reasonable cost ensuring that any correspondence or other communication from the tax department is received and dealt with promptly, swiftly and efficiently. This can include payment of Municipal Taxes on behalf of the client by arrangement.
2. Representation before the Tax Authorities
Even the most prudent person may fall foul of the tax department at some time or another. Perhaps some income earned abroad has not been declared or perhaps an income declaration reveals some anomalies causing the tax authority to take a closer look.
At best it is unnerving as a foreigner to receive a communication from the tax department announcing an inspection of their accounts or requesting a visit to the tax department itself to answer questions. Apart from anything else language problems may come into play.
On a one off consultancy basis we can assist by researching the likely causes of the problem together with the client and then approaching the relevant department, either alone or with the client, in an effort to resolve the matter. In many cases what appears to be a difficult matter can be resolved amicably.
3. Business Start-Up Consultancy
Many foreigners seek to start some kind of business activity in Portugal. It is vital that any commercial activity is correctly structured and established from the start. A wrong move at the outset may be very costly later. Our firm will sit down with a client, explore and discuss the issues involved in simple practical terms and advise on the best way forward. Through established relationships we can assist with the establishment of various business entities including Limited companies or branch registration of foreign companies. This can be either on a one off consultancy basis or with a view to a continuing longer term accounts relationship.