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How we won the court against the Portuguese migration service regarding no decision on residency

I have been planning to move to the European Union since 2022. My friend told me about Immigrant Invest, and with their help, I applied for a Portugal Golden Visa.

However, the Portuguese migration service did not process my application within the legally required 90 business days. Immigrant Invest lawyers proposed to file a lawsuit to speed up the process.

I had no experience going to court in Türkiye, let alone other countries. Without the support of lawyers, I would not have considered the idea. But thanks to Immigrant Invest, I didn’t even have to do anything to win the case.



Entertainment producer

Clients’ names and photos have been changed

Portugal Golden Visa Lawsuit

How we won the court against the Portuguese migration service regarding no decision on residency

Why did Emir not get a residence permit within the prescribed period?

In the fall of 2023, Emir applied for a Portugal residence permit by investment with the help of the Immigrant Invest lawyers. The investor bought Portuguese investment fund units and paid commissions and fees. The total expenses amounted to €538,082.

The Portuguese migration service must decide on an application within 90 business days from the date of application. But Emir did not receive an answer on time.

SEF, the Portuguese migration service at the time, could not cope with the number of applications for residence permits and was disbanded in October 2023. It was replaced by the AIMA — the Agency for Integration, Migration and Asylum.

According to Portuguese media, AIMA will need 1.5 years to process all migration requests: SEF passed 350,000 initial applications for visas and residence permits and 340,000 applications for residency extension.

Solution: how to speed up residency application processing

Immigrant Invest lawyers explained how to speed up the procedure for obtaining a residence permit: the investor files a lawsuit. They don’t need to go to court on their own; a lawyer files the lawsuit on the investor’s behalf.

The cause of action is the migration service’s failure to comply with deadlines. It means that more than 90 business days have passed since applying for a residence permit.

Vladlena Baranova

Vladlena Baranova,

Lawyer, AML Compliance officer, certified CAMS specialist

You can file a lawsuit at two stages: when waiting for the initial approval or expecting a residence permit card. In both cases, the law states that the maximum processing time is 90 business days.

If the investor files a lawsuit after the application has been submitted, the court may make one of the following decisions:

  1. Reject the lawsuit. In this case, the investor will have to wait for a decision from AIMA.

  2. Send a request to the migration service regarding the application status. AIMA must indicate the reason for the delay and may consider the investor’s application before the end of the proceedings.

  3. Oblige the migration service to make a decision. As a rule, the migration service is given 10 to 30 business days to approve the application and invite the investor to submit biometrics or issue a permit card.

The investor does not need to come to Portugal at any stage. The decision on the application is sent by email.

Emir entered into an additional agreement with Immigrant Invest, and lawyers began preparing a lawsuit.

Filing a lawsuit against the administrative court of Lisbon with the help of Immigrant Invest lawyers

Emir signed a power of attorney for the lawyers to represent his interests.

The proceeding usually takes 1.5—2 months.


1 day, December 1st, 2023

Signing an agreement with Immigrant Invest

Emir allowed a lawyer in Portugal to act on his behalf. For this, he signed a power of attorney.


2 weeks

Preparation of documents and filing a lawsuit

Immigrant Invest lawyers helped Emir collect the necessary documents and submitted a lawsuit online.


1.5 months

Obtaining preliminary approval

Emir received a notification by email. The court considered the application and ordered the migration service to pre-approve the request for a residence permit within 10 days.

The court also ordered AIMA to register Emir for biometrics submission.


January 31st, 2024

Arrival in Portugal to submit biometrics

Emir came to Portugal for fingerprinting. From now on, AIMA will review his application within 8 months.

Upon receiving approval for a residence permit, he will pay a fee of €5,812 for a resident card. Cards will be issued within two weeks.

Emir’s plans for life in Portugal with a residence permit



Waits for a Portugal residence permit card

I am glad that the experienced lawyers of Immigrant Invest helped me. I would not have known I had the right to go to court and stand for my rights without them.

Now, Emir is waiting for the approval of the application and the issuance of his residence permit card. If the migration service doesn’t issue the investor’s card within 90 working days, he can file a lawsuit again.

Emir’s residence permit will be valid for two years. He plans to move to Porto and enrol in ESAD High School of Art and Design with his new status.

This case was provided by our expert

Alina Mishurenko

Editor-in-chief, content creator

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