The Portuguese tax payer identification number, known by most people as a "NIF," is a crucial form of personal identification for anyone living or doing business in Portugal. Also known as "número de contribuinte," the Portuguese NIF enables residents as well as companies to identify themselves to the Tax and Customs Authority in Portugal (Autoridade Tributária e Aduaneira, or simply AT).

If you intend to live in Portugal and want to begin the immigration process, you're in the process of moving to Portugal, or you're already a Portuguese resident, your priority should be getting your Portuguese tax number.

In this article, we'll explain everything you need to know about the Portugal taxpayer number. Here's what we'll cover:

  • What is the tax identification number NIF in Portugal
  • How to get a Portugal fiscal number
  • Who should get the Portugal NIF number, and more.


What is the NIF number in Portugal?

Startup-VisaThe NIF (Número de Identificação Fiscal) is a unique nine-digit number that is specific to each individual or each business, assigned by the tax authorities in Portugal to individuals and entities for tax purposes.

The NIF is essential for various financial and administrative transactions in Portugal, such as opening a Portuguese bank account, buying property, receiving social security payments (for foreign citizens who don't have EU, European Economic Area, or Swiss citizenship) and signing a contract. As your taxpayer ID, the NIF number is also crucial for paying taxes in the country.

If you read about getting a NIF number in Portugal, you may see references to "natural or legal person." This terminology is just to establish a distinction between an individual (natural person) requesting a NIF and a company or entity (legal person) applying for one.

Anyone can apply for a NIF number in Portugal, regardless of citizenship or place of residence, anyone can apply for a NIF number in Portugal. Even children are eligible for a NIF, and they might need one for school registration, being named as a beneficiary, and accessing public healthcare services.


Why do I need a NIF in Portugal?

NIF in PortugalIt is advisable to apply for a NIF as soon as possible if you are considering investing in Portugal or living in the country, even for a short time, as it will be necessary to complete transactions, including:

  • Opening bank accounts
  • Paying annual income taxes
  • Purchasing or renting a property
  • Setting up the Internet, telephone, or television services
  • Setting up a mobile phone contract
  • Buying a car
  • Signing a work contract

Unlike other nations where you may use a Social Security number, ID number, or passport number for these purposes, you'll need to present your NIF number in Portugal.


Tax Payer Identification Number Benefits

nif portugal lawyerObtaining a Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) in Portugal offers a range of benefits, especially if you want to navigate the country's financial and legal sectors with minimal hassle.

The advantages of having a Portuguese taxpayer number include:

Efficient interactions with the Portuguese tax authority

The Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN) in Portugal streamlines your dealings with the Portuguese Tax Office. When you need to file a tax return, pay taxes, or access tax-related services, having a NIF number simplifies the process.

Simplified tax processes

The taxpayer identification number is indispensable for tax purposes in Portugal. It serves as a unique identifier, making your tax transactions more straightforward and secure.

Essential for the Golden Visa Portugal process

Having a Tax Identification Number is critical in the Portugal Golden Visa process. Non-European Union citizens interested in applying for the visa need a Tax Identification Number to facilitate the verification of financial transactions and investments that are necessary for the program.

Necessary for inheriting Portuguese assets

guide to getting a social number portugalIf you are inheriting assets in Portugal, a TIN is vital. It helps ensure that the process adheres to Portuguese government regulations and that all tax obligations are met.

Designation as a tax resident

Having a TIN in Portugal facilitates your status as a tax resident and opens doors to numerous financial and legal processes, enhancing your experience in managing affairs in the country.

Ownership of a Tax Payer Identification Number in Portugal may also entitle you to tax breaks or lower yearly tax obligations to the Portuguese Tax Authority.

You instantly qualify for tax deductions in specific IRS (personal income tax) categories, available for these types of payments when you visit a cafe or ask the pharmacist to issue an invoice, along with your NIF when you buy medicine.


How to Get a Taxpayer Identification Number Portugal (NIF) as an Individual (Natural Person)

NIF lawyer portugalYou can request a NIF number at any tax office in Portugal (Serviço de Finanças), Loja de Cidadão, or a facility where the Portuguese Cartão de Cidadão (Citizen's Card) is issued (these are known as "Citizen Shops"). You can also apply online via the e-Balcão, which is the Portuguese Tax and Customs Authority's (AT) official online service for NIF registration.

Non-residents in Portugal need these documents to request their NIF:

  • A passport or identification number
  • Proof of address in the country of origin (such as a utility, water, or internet bill)

For residents in Portugal requesting their NIF, the required documents are:

  • A valid Portuguese ID card: This could be your Citizen's Card (Cartão de Cidadão) or a valid residence permit with your Portuguese tax identification number already assigned.
  • Proof of address in Portugal: This can be any document demonstrating your current residence, such as a utility bill, rental agreement, or bank statement. Make sure it's dated within the past three months.

If you are applying for a Portuguese NIF number for a child, the required documents are:

  • Child's passport or birth certificate (original and copy)
  • Parent's or legal guardian's identification document (passport or ID card, original and copy)
  • Proof of the child's address in Portugal (e.g., utility bill, rental agreement, recent bank statement)
  • If applicable, a power of attorney if a representative is applying on behalf of the child

You have three options to apply for a NIF: visiting the tax office (Finanças) in person, going to a Citizen's Shop, or applying online through the Finanças website. Bear in mind that, while the AT is working on an English version, the website is only available in Portuguese.

If you prefer, you can designate a NIF lawyer or an accountant to submit the application on your behalf.


Businesses in Portugal need a NIF (Número de Identificação Fiscal) for a multitude of reasons related to legal, financial, and operational aspects. In Portugal, a special NIF for companies is used to identify a corporation in financial transactions and tax payments; it's known as a Número de Identificação de Pessoa Colectiva or NIPC. This Portuguese tax identification number is necessary for the following purposes:

non-habitual residency, tax systems, tax adviseTaxation

Filing tax returns: The NIF serves as the unique identifier for businesses in the Portuguese tax system. All tax returns, including corporate income tax, Value Added Tax (VAT), and other applicable taxes, must be filed using the NIF.
Payment of taxes: All tax payments made by businesses are linked to their NIF, ensuring proper tracking and record-keeping for the tax authorities.
Deductible expenses: Certain business expenses can only be deducted from taxes if they are documented with the NIF of the vendor or supplier.

Financial transactions

Opening bank accounts: Businesses cannot open bank accounts in Portugal without a NIF. This is essential for receiving and making payments, managing payroll, and conducting other financial activities.
Obtaining loans and credit: Banks and other financial institutions require the NIF for creditworthiness checks and to process loan applications.

Legal and administrative purposes

Company registration: All businesses registered in Portugal are assigned a NIF, which is required for official documentation and legal interactions.
Obtaining licenses and permits: Many licenses and permits required for business operations, such as construction permits or import/export licenses, necessitate the NIF.
Contracts and agreements: Businesses use their NIFs when entering into contracts with suppliers, vendors, and other parties.

There are two main ways to apply for a Portuguese NIF for a business:

Two Self employed digital nomads are typing on a laptop and gesturing at the laptop together. Bank account
Pay income taxes
Foreign countries
digital nomads pay taxesApply online through the Portal das Finanças

This is the preferred method for businesses, as it is faster and more convenient than going in person. However, the website is currently only available in Portuguese.

To apply online, you will need:

  • A Portuguese digital certificate (certificado digital) or authentication through the Sistema de Autenticação de Identidade Digital (video identification)
  • The necessary company documents, such as the incorporation act or company charter
  • The Tax Identification Number (NIF) of the company representative(s)

Apply in person at a Finanças (tax office):

  • This is an alternative option if you don't have a digital certificate or prefer to apply in person.
  • While scheduling an appointment is often preferred, some offices may still accept walk-ins.
  • You will need to bring the same documents as for the online application, as well as your valid passport or ID.


Do I need a fiscal representative to request a tax payer identification number (NIF)?

paying taxes portuguese tax identification number for portuguese citizens If you are a non-resident in Portugal, you are constitutionally required to select a tax representative to request a NIF. A fiscal representative is a link in Portugal between a non-resident or business and the Portuguese Tax Authority. EU citizens and Portuguese residents can apply in person or online without appointing a fiscal representative, but it can be helpful to have one. Meanwhile, non-EU citizens require a fiscal representative.

You can either select a lawyer or a law firm as your tax representative. Again, you will sometimes see references to choosing a "natural or legal person" used in relation to electing a tax representative. In these instances, a "natural person" is a lawyer, while a "legal person" is a law firm.

To allow a fiscal representative to request a NIF on your behalf, you should give them power of attorney. They will then need the following documents:

  • A fiscal representative's personal NIF
  • A fiscal representative's Citizen Card or Permanent Residence Card
  • Confirmation of their residential address in Portugal (fiscal representatives must have permanent residency in Portugal, even if they are not Portuguese)

The address linked to the NIF at this point is the address of your tax representative. Your fiscal representative will now be in charge of handling all of your tax obligations in Portugal:

  • Receiving your taxes and fees
  • Receiving letters relating to your Portuguese taxes and keeping you updated so you can meet tax deadlines
  • Making sure that you pay all of your taxes and potential fines
  • Submitting tax-related claims, requesting tax appeals, and filing tax disputes on your behalf, when required

renting in portugal real estate agent

A professional accountant can assist you in ensuring you are up to speed with the processes, including avoiding any fines or unforeseen tax charges that may emerge from being inexperienced with the Portuguese tax system. However, anyone who is a permanent resident in Portugal can be appointed a fiscal representative.

We highly advise choosing a reputable accounting firm or a licensed Portuguese accountant with expertise working with foreigners.

If you later decide to move to Portugal and handle your own tax affairs, you can then ask the Portuguese tax authorities to remove the fiscal representation associated with your name and NIF after a few months. A home rental agreement with your Portuguese address or a document known as Atestado de Residência, which you can obtain from your local Junta de Freguesia, would serve as proof of residency.

Please get in touch with us if you want to learn more about applying for a NIF number in Portugal or are looking for fiscal representation in Portugal. By choosing GetNIFportugal, you can order your NIF online and get a simple, quick, and hassle-free service for a fair price.

Frequently asked questions

What is the Portugal taxpayer identification number (NIF)?

In Portugal, your Número de Identificação Fiscal (NIF) or taxpayer identification number is essentially your personal tax key. It’s a form of identification that’s necessary for all kinds of purchases and transactions in everyday life; without it, signing contracts or opening a bank account becomes impossible. A Portuguese national with a valid Citizen’s Card will be automatically assigned a NIF, while anyone else who wants to spend time or conduct business in Portugal should apply either online or at the local tax office.

Is TIN the same as NIF?

Yes, the TIN (Tax Identification Number) is the same as the NIF Number, the nine-digit Portugal taxpayer number.

How can I get a TIN number in Portugal?

The Tax Identification Number (TIN) is granted to individuals with Portuguese citizenship when they apply for a Citizen’s Card. However, for other European Union citizens and individuals from third countries, obtaining a TIN requires submitting the necessary documents. This can be done by booking a face-to-face taxpayer identification number Portugal appointment at the Tax Office (check online for their opening hours).

How much does it cost to apply for a NIF?

Applying for a NIF (an individual tax identification number) requires you to pay a processing fee of €10, whether you’re applying for a NIF for an individual or for a business, regardless of whether you are a citizen, resident, or foreign visitor in Portugal. This is an advantage over some other countries with similar identification systems, which can impose significantly higher application fees or administrative charges. Bear in mind that if you appoint a fiscal representative to apply for an NIF, which is required for non-residents of Portugal, you’ll also have to pay for their services, typically starting at around €100.

How can I contact the Portuguese Tax and Customs Authority for NIF registration?

To get a NIF (Número de Identificação Fiscal), you can contact the Portuguese Tax and Customs Authority (AT) through various channels. Online options include the official e-Balcão service and the ePortugal government portal. In person, you can visit a tax office or a Portuguese consulate (if residing abroad). Visit AT’s website for detailed registration procedures and requirements.

Can a Portuguese citizen apply for a Taxpayer Identification Number Portugal online?

Yes, Portuguese citizens can apply for a NIF online through the official website of the tax authorities. This involves submitting an application form and the relevant documents.

What role does the regional tax authority’s name play in the NIF process?

The regional tax authority’s name is important in the NIF application process, as it identifies the specific office responsible for issuing your NIF. This is particularly relevant for those studying at a Portuguese university or involved in the Portuguese Golden Visa program.

How can I get my NIF number online in Portugal?

You can also apply for your Portuguese NIF number online via the e-Balcão, which is the Portuguese Tax and Customs Authority’s (AT) official online service for NIF registration.

Non-residents need these documents to request their NIF: 

  • A passport or identification number
  • Proof of address in the country of origin (such as a utility, water, or internet bill)

For residents in Portugal requesting their NIF, the required documents are:

  • A valid Portuguese ID card:
  • Proof of address in Portugal

Do I need a tax representative in Portugal?

It is required by law that every non-EU resident who owns a property, has a bank account, or any other type of commercial activity in Portugal appoints a tax representative (also known as a fiscal representative). The fiscal representative must have a Portuguese address and be registered with the Portuguese Tax Authority.