Junta de Freguesia, which is a kind of parish council, is the organ that issues the Atestado de Residencia. This document is an official proof of address and, therefore, may come in handy for sorting your daily life here.
Do I really need an Atestado de Residência?
If you are a foreign citizen living in Ericeira, or anywhere in Portugal, for more than 3 months then, you may need an Atestado de Residencia.
This document is especially useful when, for whatever reason, your renting contract or deed of the house where you live, is not in your name. Also, you may need this document for applying for a residency permit, for instance.
However, if you are an European Union citizen, you will need to apply for a Certificado de Registo de Cidadão da União Europeia. This is the paper that legalizes your stay in Portugal, from the 4th month onwards. This is also the paper that will grant you access to public health care in Portugal, on top of serving as a proof of address. Find out here how to apply for your Certificado de Registo de Cidadão da União Europeia.
Nevertheless, the Atestado de Residência may still be useful to you, as an EU citizen. That is because, in case you do not have a renting contract or deed in your name, you may use the Atestado de Residência from Junta da Freguesia as proof of address. You will need either one or the other for applying for a Certificado de Registo de Cidadão da União Europeia.
How can I get my Atestado de Residência?
I confess I was amused to hear, first hand from a friend, how exciting getting an atestado de residencia can be. That is if you are unprepared for the task ahead.
The most straightforward bit in the process is, probably, the payment – provided you have 5 euros cash on you. Otherwise, you may find yourself, like my friend did, rushing out of Junta da Freguesia 5 minutes before its closing time, looking for a cash point.
Bent after bend, with no cashpoint at sight, you realise how similar these old, backstreets can look. At that point, you may only be sure of one thing. And that is, of how sweaty you are. But, there is hope… Just make sure you check our tips below.
Earn your Atestado de Residência
Our first super-tip, which will help you feel that you are on top of this, is the following: expect to go to Junta de Freguesia at least three times. But, only if you are efficient.
In your first visit, you will collect a form, called requerimento, and drop your 2 witnesses’ ID copies. The second time around, you will submit the form, completed and signed by your witnesses, along with your ID and NIF. And, finally, you will be able to collect the Atestado de Residencia, on your third visit.
Be aware of the opening time, from 9 am to 5 pm, in Ericeira, including lunchtime.
Know your Junta de Freguesia
Our second valuable tip is this: go to your own freguesia’s Junta de Freguesia. This can be Ericeira, if you live in Ericeira, or it may be Santo Isidoro, Encarnacao, Carvoeira, Mafra, Milharado, Azueira e sobral de abelheira, and others, depending on your address.
In case you are unsure about what freguesia you live in, check your address online and this should come up. Alternatively, you can call the Junta de freguesia and tell them your address. They will let you know where to go. Consider asking a Portuguese speaker to help with the telephone call.
Make it really easy for your witnesses
Our third, amazing tip is this: you will need to ask 2 people to be your witnesses, who will confirm that you have been living there for, at least, 90 days. The address registered in your witnesses’ citizen cards (the electronic Portuguese ID) must be in the same freguesia as yours.
However, if you think it may be difficult to bring these 2 people to Junta da Freguesia with you, here comes the good news. The witnesses do not have to go anywhere. You just need them to give you a copy of their ID, to be taken on your first visit to Junta de Freguesia. And, for your second visit, you will need them to sign the requerimento form.
Along with the witnesses’ paperwork, you will need your passport and NIF.
Finally, expect your Atestado de Residencia to be ready in 1 to 2 days. You will have to collect the document from Junta de Freguesia yourself and pay the 5 euros in cash.
In short, here is what you will need
- Requerimento form
- 2 witnesses, whose ID address is registered in the freguesia
- citizen card copies from theses 2 witnesses
- Requerimento form signed by your 2 witnesses
- Your passport
- Your NIF
- 5 euros in cash
- A proof of address, if possible. Ideally your renting contract.
Thanks for reading, and I would love to hear back from you. Let me know if you found these tips helpful or if you have your own tips to share.