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Portugal Business Regulations: A Quick Introduction

By Rauva

Published on 12 April 2024

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Understanding Business Regulations in Portugal

Types of Business Entities

In Portugal, there are several types of business entities that you can choose from when starting a business. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it's important to understand them before making a decision.

  • Sole Proprietorship: This is the simplest form of business entity, where the business is owned and operated by a single individual. It offers full control and flexibility but also comes with unlimited personal liability.
  • **Partnership:** A partnership is formed when two or more individuals come together to start a business. It can be a general partnership, where all partners have equal rights and responsibilities, or a limited partnership, where there are both general partners and limited partners.
  • **Limited Liability Company (LLC):** An LLC is a popular choice for small businesses in Portugal. It offers limited liability protection to its owners and allows for flexible management and tax benefits.
  • **Public Limited Company (PLC):** A PLC is a larger business entity that can raise capital by selling shares to the public. It is subject to more regulations and reporting requirements than other types of entities.

Registering a Business

Is a crucial step for anyone looking to establish a presence in the country. It is important to understand the process and requirements to ensure a smooth and successful registration.

To register a business in Portugal, you will need to follow these steps:

  • **Choose a business name:** Select a unique and suitable name for your business that complies with Portuguese naming regulations.
  • **Determine the legal form:** Decide on the type of legal entity that best suits your business, such as a sole proprietorship, partnership, or limited liability company.
  • **Obtain a taxpayer number:** Apply for a taxpayer number - NIF - from the Portuguese Tax and Customs Authority (AT). This number is required for tax purposes and other legal obligations
Once your business is registered, you will need to comply with ongoing obligations, such as filing tax returns, sending certified invoices or e-faturas for every sale, maintaining accounting records, and fulfilling employment regulations.

Tip: It is recommended to seek professional advice or assistance to ensure compliance with all legal requirements and to navigate the registration process smoothly.

Taxation and Accounting

It is important to understand and follow the regulatory standards. InvoiceXpress is a trusted partner that offers a seamless integration between multiple platforms, providing our clients with a centralized solution for their business account, invoicing, and accounting needs. This integration not only ensures compliance with the regulatory standards for invoicing in Portugal but also increases efficiency and productivity. With InvoiceXpress, our clients can focus on growing their business without worrying about the complexities of invoicing and compliance.
Here are some key benefits of our partnership with InvoiceXpress:
  • **Legally binding and compliant invoicing:** Our partnership ensures that our clients' invoices are legally binding and follow the regulatory standards for invoicing in Portugal, giving them peace of mind.
  • **Seamless integration:** InvoiceXpress integrates seamlessly with multiple platforms, providing our clients with a centralized solution for their business account, invoicing, and accounting needs.
  • **Increased efficiency and productivity:** By streamlining invoicing and compliance processes, our partnership with InvoiceXpress allows our clients to focus on growing their business and increases their overall efficiency and productivity.

Employment Regulations

Labor laws in the country protect the rights of employees and ensure fair treatment in the workplace. Here are some key points to keep in mind:
  • **Working hours:** The standard working week in Portugal is 40 hours, with a maximum of 8 hours per day. Overtime may be required in certain industries or situations.
  • **Holidays and leave:** Employees are entitled to paid annual leave, public holidays, and maternity/paternity leave.
  • **Contracts and termination:** Employment contracts must be in writing and include specific terms and conditions. Termination of employment must follow legal procedures.

It's important for employers to familiarize themselves with these regulations to ensure compliance and maintain a positive work environment. Seeking legal advice or consulting with a professional can help navigate the complexities of employment regulations in Portugal.


In conclusion, establishing and managing a business in Portugal involves a thoughtful consideration of the diverse business entities available, followed by a meticulous registration process. Understanding taxation, accounting standards, and compliance is crucial for sustained success. Additionally, employers must adhere to labor laws to protect employee rights and maintain a harmonious work environment. Seeking professional advice is recommended throughout these processes to ensure a smooth and compliant business operation in Portugal.

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Written by Rauva

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©Rauva - 2024
Rauva is partnered with Swan who will be providing all payment services to Rauva clients. Rauva does not have access to client funds. Funds are kept in accounts provided by Swan, held in BNP Paribas. Swan is an EMI, based in France, supervised, and regulated by ACPR/Banque de France. Swan is authorized to carry out such services in Portugal and registered with Banco de Portugal under the registration number 7893.
Rauva is a certified accounting firm, but is not a certified legal services provider. As such, Rauva does not provide legal services. Rauva acts as an intermediary who facilitates the introduction to our customers of legal services partners who are legally registered and certified in Portugal. A list of Rauva’s partners can be found here.