Europe

Golden Visa Misery: “This is an absolute scandal”

Hundreds, if not thousands, of “golden visa customers” (wealthy individuals enthusiastic about investing in this country) can ruin the day they chose Portugal.

Since the beginning of this year, the SEF Border Authority has virtually decided to unilaterally freeze residence permits for investment, also known as the acronym for ARI in Portugal. ‘legal’.

Golden visas need to be renewed, but more and more foreign investors feel “high and dry” every day as the SEF refuses to issue renewal appointments.

Yes, if they remain in this country, they are basically “ok”. But if they leave, the trip becomes a nightmare, as their documents indicate that their residence permit (allowing free entry into Schengen countries) has expired.

We are not just talking about Chinese investors, the nationalities most attracted to the Golden Visa program that started 10 years ago. This scheme continues to attract investors from around the world, including the United States, South America, South Africa, Russia, India, and more recently the United Kingdom.

One of the lawyers who is frustrated by dozens of Golden Visa clients in the office explains:

She tells us how a client was arrested when he flew to Germany “because his documents showed that his visa was out of date.”

“These are serious people,” she emphasized. “They are not criminals. Some are former government members. They chose Portugal’s golden visa scheme at face value, but what happens to them after they give up their money? I found the reality that I’m not interested in!

“This is an absolute scandal,” the lawyer claimed. “It’s not just the question,’Well, what’s going on in Portugal?’ It’s much, much worse. What is happening gives a terrible image of this country. People are already aware of this and are taking money elsewhere. We have lost the trust of the country in which we invest. “

The Resident One such visa holder who, like everyone in this story, sought to remain anonymous for fear that exposing the situation could lead to further bureaucratic stagnation in the future. I told you.

As both he and the lawyer we emphasized emphasized, this is a problem caused by the SEF-immigrants and border bureaus are fighting teeth and nails for relief from “extinction”. -People involved in the misery of this golden visa think they can’t come too soon.

“SEF is a significant revocation of the basic norms of the rule of law, a significant revocation of the basic norms of the rule of law, and the signs of institutional dysfunction and corruption I presume are the EU.” He told us.

“I invested in a Portuguese business, bought and repaired a devastated house, hired local professionals and merchants. I spend the euro here every day and take Portuguese classes. It is not insane to invite immigrants like me who want to respect Portuguese culture and society and help build a strong future, and then make them criminals.

“The SEF crisis could destroy decades of prudent work to build Portugal’s reputation with foreign tourists, businessmen and investors due to the internationalization and diversification of the economy. I have.”

At Algarve, we spoke with a “global family office provider” focused on helping English-speaking people through various forms of investment citizenship / visa applications. It also has a long list of clients suffering from SEF’s squeeze into the sector, but pays attention to the choice of words, saying “I wouldn’t agree to be hostile to government agencies.” (SEF is essentially so, but the government is dismantled).

“It’s just that the system isn’t working,” the consultant admitted. “People are affected at all levels, not just golden visas. They can’t get any kind of promise-and none of us have an idea of ​​when this will change.

“The advice for current clients is that it is important that their investment coincides with the time their application is processed.”

In other words, investors / golden visa applicants are not advised to let go of cash while the SEF is not processing the application.

And those who have been issued a visa with a near expiration date are said to be “not recommended to leave the country”.

All of this is summarized in an investment program designed to enliven the country and hits the absolute swamp of problems.

“I want you to dismantle the SEF! I can’t imagine how much I want,” another lawyer said. “There is really no excuse for their actions. This is the worst kind of political gameplay possible. People who were asked for any kind of document in the middle of the application will have the document expired. I noticed that it’s broken. When SEF unfreezes the platform (and no one knows when it will happen), it’s the process of refreshing the documentation. You have to start over. There is. This puts our professional dignity at risk! Our clients think we gave them terrible advice – yet it all depends on how SEF decided to behave. There was no reason for this. “

Our longtime golden visa holders living around the world admit that: , Executives, retirees, businessmen, investors — immigrants.

“More than 14,000 permits have been issued. We are productive and ambitious people and travel frequently and often for business. We are in a position to be a wonderful ambassador to Portugal. Portugal is open to business and can tell the world that it is the perfect place to open a new branch or factory.

“Instead, we need to walk around with expired documents and avoid certain airports to avoid being arrested. We have lost all confidence in our situation, delaying important life decisions. (I myself am already looking to sell my house and move to Spain.

“And we are telling our business network. This is not the country you want to invest in. It may be part of the European Union, but there is a complete collapse of the rule of law and even worse. , No one seems to care. “

To Natashadon

natasha.donn@portugalresident.com

https://www.portugalresident.com/golden-visa-misery-this-is-an-absolute-scandal/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=golden-visa-misery-this-is-an-absolute-scandal Golden Visa Misery: “This is an absolute scandal”

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