Starting a Business in Portugal – Procedure




Register at Empresa na Hora

Empresa na Hora or Empresa Online

There are two ways you can choose to starting a business in Portugal:
1. "Empresa na Hora": This is most common way to register a business. This service enables to set up a company in one hour at a single contact point. The partners must have all of necessary documents and the company is set up at one of the desks of the "Empresa na hora" offices.
The name of the company is chosen from the list of pre-approved names available online or to submit a name of its choice and obtain a company name certificate. This certificate can be requested online and it is valid for 3 months.
Then shareholders need to choose one of the pre-approved standard company deeds, available at Empresa na Hora.
Shareholders will receive a temporary code to access the certificate of incorporation, the corporate identification card, and the Social Security number.
2. "Empresa Online":
This service enables to set up a company through the Internet in 1 to 2 days.


Open a bank account


Shareholders must open a bank account and obtain a Bank Identification Number (IBAN)


Declaration of commencement of activity

Tax Authority

The declaration of commencement of activity must be submitted at the Tax Authorities’ Offices. Shareholders must provide the Tax Authority with their Bank Identification Number (IBAN) and their corporate identification card. VAT registration can be done while submitting the declaration of commencement of activity.


Social Security

Segurança Social

The employers shall communicate the admission of employees to the Portuguese Social Security services of the area of the employee's workplace online, within 24 hours preceding the employment agreement’s entry into force or 24 hours after the beginning of the activity.



Private insurer

To guarantee an effective compensation of damages arising from work accidents covering employees, trainees and paid managers, the legislator requires from the employer the transfer of all its responsibility to insurance companies.


Register employees with the Labor Compensation Funds (FCT and FGCT)

Fundo de Compensação do Trabalho - FCT and Fundo de Garantia de Compensação do Trabalho - FGCT

According to the Portuguese labor law (Law 70 of August 30, 2013), employees shall be registered in two Labor Compensation Funds : Fundo de Compensação do Trabalho - FCT and Fundo de Garantia de Compensação do Trabalho - FGCT).