Information on the latest news about SEF
Following the recent news published in the Portuguese media mentioning that an investor has taken SEF to court over Golden Visa, leading the court to mandate that the procedure be sped up, we would like to clarify that accordingly to the information that is available for public consultation the situation is the following:
- An ARI program investor submitted an application to the program through the ARI Portal in December 2021;
- In April such investor filed an action against SEF based on the fact that no decision – of pre-approval or refusal. has been issued and 90 days have elapsed since the date of submission, and no additional intervention took place after that date;
Now, about the sentencing, what the court decided was to mandate SEF to analyze the process and either pre-approve or refuse the investor. As far as we know, no deadline was set for this decision to be issued.
Following such a decision by SEF, and in case the investor is pre-approved then, according to the sentence, SEF is required to allow for the collection of biometrics within 10 days from the issuance of such decision.
Taking into consideration the information provided IAS would like to clarify that the court sentencing was, as far as we can determine, to mandate SEF to issue a decision within a reasonable timeframe. Please note that no decision regarding the approval of the application or the scheduling of biometrics was made by the court.
Furthermore, IAS would like to clarify that the administrative process used to file this action against SEF is not available to all the candidates, since a minimum of 90 days must have elapsed since the last intervention of SEF on the investor´s file, in order for a valid claim to be filed under the said procedure.
Also, please note that SEF has been analyzing the applications in chronological order. Therefore, we anticipate that SEF may not comply with the court decision, since accelerating the analysis of an applicant may constitute a breach of, amongst others, the principle of equal treatment.
We will continue to follow up on this matter and will keep our investors informed. We encourage our investors t contact their case responsible for any further queries.