Foreign residents applying for Non-Habitual Resident status with high-value-added business activities (“VTA”) may now receive prompt approval for a flat-rate tax of 20% on earned income in income categories A or B (salaries and sole trader income). Under previous practice, “VTA” approval was individualised and could take a year or more for consideration. Nevertheless, taxpayers must still be prepared to provide proof of their qualifications and effective exercise of the business activity upon request from the tax authorities (“AT”) at any time during the “NHR” 10-year period. These new procedures came into effect for applications made after 26 June 2019. This streamlined application follows other “Simplex” actions launched earlier this year. For example, the Portuguese Tax Authority (“AT”) overhauled the list of qualifying Non-Habitual Residency professions (“VTA”) eligible for the 20% flat-rate tax that were initially put in place in 2009.
Beginning in January, paper invoices will start to be phased out with transactions transmitted in real time directly to the “AT” (Tax Authority). Consumers will only receive a hard copy if requested. It is another step towards the dematerialisation of invoices as part of the Simplex + initiative. In the initial phase, merchants must install the applications to establish a direct link to the Finanças’ e-fatura system via a “QR” (quick response) code. Consumers will no longer need to give out their taxpayer number.
Among a group of eight Simplex+2018 measures, the Government proposes to introduce changes in the way proper receipts are issued. The authorities have committed to regulating the elimination of printed statements, given that detailed digitalised records of transactions are already available in a taxpayer’s personal area on the “AT” portal.
In 2018, the Government plans to launch, under the framework of the Simplex+2018, a new “citizen card” for foreigners residing in Portugal, which will group in a single document identification numbers for tax (“NIF”), Social Security and the National Health System (“SNS”). According to the Secretary of State, with this new card, the delivery to the foreign citizen of all these identification numbers will happen simultaneously at the same place of issuance, cutting significantly the time and effort required.
As of 01 July, online letting platforms such as AirBnB and Booking can only list properties duly licensed in the National Tourist Registry. The obligation to enroll is part of a simplex initiative known as “Simpler Tourist Licenses”. With the new regulation, the Government intends to avoid unfair competition between property owners and tour operators as well as strengthen compliance.