Can I Get A NIF Number As A Non-Resident?

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Published: February 2022 & Last Updated: November 2022 are able to arrange a NIF for €150 (or €140 for Portugalist readers). The current turnaround time is one week.

Discount applied automatically (no code needed).

If you aren’t already resident in Portugal, you may not have a Portuguese NIF number. In fact, it’s quite likely that you don’t. It’s a number that can only be used as in Portugal and it’s not something you normally need as a tourist visiting here. Sometimes you’ll be asked if you have one in the supermarket, or if you’d like to use yours, but you can simply decline.

However, there are some instances in which you may need a NIF as a non-resident. Two examples include:

  • If you decided to purchase a property in Portugal (non-residents can purchase property in Portugal, but still need a NIF number)
  • If you wanted to open a Portuguese bank account (some banks will give you a temporary NIF, but most require you to have a NIF already)

If you’re from outside the EU/EEA and don’t already have a friend or family member resident in Portugal who can be your fiscal representative, you will probably need to use a company like to obtain your NIF.

According to Kathleen Lo from

If you are an EU/EEA resident applying for a NIF directly with the Finanças, you do not need a fiscal representative. All non-EU residents need a fiscal representative to apply for a NIF on their behalf. Your fiscal representative does not necessarily need to be a lawyer, but they do need to be a Portuguese tax resident and a Portuguese permanent resident or citizen. Residents of Switzerland do need a fiscal representative since Switzerland is not part of the EU or EEA.’

So, unless you’re resident in an EU or EEA country, you need a fiscal representative to help you obtain your NIF. You don’t have to work with a company like Bordr or any of the other company that offer this service, but that’s often the easiest option. It may also be your only option as most people don’t have a friend or family member who’s resident in Portugal that they can ask to do this for them.

For more information, read our guide to getting a Portuguese NIF.

Professionally answered by Kathleen Lo from Bordr connects individuals with financial and legal professionals, enabling them to obtain essential services like a NIF or Portuguese bank account.

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  1. Forgive my naivety, I have recently obtained my NIF as I am looking to purchase property in Portugal as a holiday home. I intend to remain non resident and will not be working in Portugal or renting the property.
    Is there an obligation to do a tax return if I don’t purchase?