If you intend to work in Portugal and have acquired professional qualifications in another country, you should check if your profession is regulated by consulting the list of regulated professions1 available on the portal of the General Directorate for Employment and Labour Relations (DGERT - MTSSS).
1In the short term, this list will also make the following information available to the citizen, in accordance with subparagraphs b) to f) of paragraph 1 of article 57 of Directive 2005/36/EC: i) Description of the profession; ii) How to submit the application (under the scheme of establishment or provision of services); iii) Documentation and formalities; iv) Competent national authority responsible for the application and its contact details; iv) Costs involved; v) Deadlines for reply; vi) Forms of complaint/appeal (entity(ies) to be contacted); vii) Applicable European and national legislation.
If your profession is regulated in Portugal, you should follow one of the following options, as you wish:
- Establish in Portugal on a permanent basis - you must first apply to the competent national authority for recognition of your professional qualifications.
- If you provide services on a temporary or occasional basis, you must submit a written statement to the competent authority before beginning to provide services (prior statement). This statement shall be valid for one year from the date of its submission.
If you are living in Portugal and wish to move to another EU Member State, where the profession you wish to exercise is regulated, you should follow one of the following options, as you wish:
- Establish yourself - you must first apply to the competent authority for recognition of your professional qualifications in the country to which you are going.
- To provide services on a temporary or occasional basis in another EU country where the profession you wish to practise is regulated, you will have to submit a written statement to the country of destination before starting to provide services.
About recognition of professional qualifications
The recognition of professional qualifications for the exercise of a regulated profession by holders of qualifications obtained in other EU Member States follows the legal scheme approved by Law No 9/2009 of 4 March, as currently drafted, which transposed Directive 2005/36/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 7 September 2005 on the recognition of professional qualifications, as amended by Directive 2013/55/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 November 2013.
In Portugal, the coordinating entity for Directive 2005/36/EC is DGERT – General Directorate for Employment and Labour Relations.
To apply for recognition of professional qualifications, you should contact the national authority competent for your profession or professional activity.
Only the competent national authority will be able to assess whether its professional qualifications are sufficient to exercise the same profession in Portugal. If there are substantial differences, the competent authority shall indicate which compensatory measures are necessary in order to be able to exercise the profession.
European Professional Card(ECP)
The European professional card (EPC) is an electronic procedure which enables you to obtain recognition of your regulated profession in another EU country.
In the European Union, this procedure is available for the following professions:
- Nurse responsible for general care
- Mountain Guide
- Real estate agent
In Portugal, the European professional card is only available for the following professions:
- Nurse responsible for general care;
To apply for the European professional card and for more information please consult the European Commission's website.
The task of the assistance centres is to provide citizens with the necessary information on the recognition of professional qualifications. The assistance centre in Portugal is provided by the Direção-Geral de Emprego e das Relações de Trabalho (General Directorate for Employment and Labour Relations).