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Changing the Civil Status in Portugal

Meet the modern Lawyers’ Society

Castilho Internacional Law Firm

“Changing your Civil Status” is a project owned by the Castilho International Law Firm, a company formed by professionals prepared to respond rigorously, effectively and dynamically to the challenges posed in the most diverse areas of law.

This was born of a deep analysis, led by several studies that concluded that more than 80% of Portuguese residents abroad do not have their civil status updated in their country of origin.

It was also found that there was no platform where, in a simple, quick and efficient way, the emigrants could update their civil status. This is the gap that Castilho International Law Firm aims to fill.

The company intends to help Portuguese citizens and / or Portuguese-descendants living abroad, in an agile way, avoiding travel to Portugal. Rely on experience, save the money and and the time you spend looking for scattered information on the internet.

Rely on experience. Don’t spend money on unnecessary trips, and time on looking for scattered information on the internet. Be pragmatic.

Have an active voice in Portugal. Claim your rights

Castilho International Law Firm will take care of your interests, putting an end to the marginalization and damage that unfortunately the emigrants face. We are known for working with the portuguese diaspora in all cases – including shares, divorce, claiming actions, legalization of the civil status in Portugal, recognition and transcription of foreign judgments, records of property and property – who by distance or by negligence, takes a lot more time to get solved, or take place in absentia, and which bring so many times the clients’ loss.

A multipurpose society with contemporary solutions

We are specialized in changing marital status, but that is not all. We are experts in financial services: we provide support and advice, we manage your investment projects in Portugal, both in the purchase and rental of real estate; we manage your financial investments and your business investments, etc… Our integrated partner network is an asset in helping you choose the best solution.

These processes, which by distance are usually carried out in absentia and which often bring misfortune, are now treated in a different way.

Through Castilho International Law Firm, you benefit from winning representation, distinguished business advice and investment solutions in Portugal, making the most of all your successes.


We provide high quality services, peculiarity and exigency, responding – and above all – surpassing any and all needs of our clients.

Ethics of Castilho International Law Firm

The permanent effort and dedication of our competent team continually aims to the provision of excellent services to all our customers, without exception. We guarantee total independence, freedom and respect for all interveners, honoring every act, with dedication to justice and freedom. We strive daily to maintain one-to-one relationships with each client – with clarity and proximity – with a focus on exceeding your expectations, making ours your process.

We value all cases presented and all businesses, products or good names, with a demanding and specialized team at the forefront of the most diverse areas of law. We continuously keep up to date, particularly at legislative level, repeatedly anticipating and safeguarding future solutions.

Introduction to our Excellence Services

The services provided by Castilho International Law Firm are exclusively based on Portuguese citizens residing abroad, as well as all their children and relatives.

We provide legal advice and represent you in all legal relations established with Portugal, including matters related to sharing, inheritance, divorce, property lawsuits, changes in civil status, reviews of foreign judgment, finances (especially in double taxation), deeds buying and selling, donations and wills.

Given the other protocols established with emigration associations around the world, you may also wish to contact the association of emigrants closest to you, in order to know the availabilities of our services and the expected dates of the trips of our lawyers to your country.

Mandatory Civil Registration Acts

The Civil Registry Code requires registration of the following events:
  • The birth;
  • Filiation;
  • Adoption;
  • The wedding;
  • Prenuptial agreements and changes in the regime of assets agreed or legally fixed;
  • The regulation of the exercise of parental responsibilities, their alteration and cessation;
  • The inhibition or suspension of the exercise of parental responsibilities and the measures limiting those responsibilities;
  • The definitive prohibition and disqualification, guardianship of minors or interdicts, administration of children’s assets, and trusteeship of disabled persons;
  • The provisional or definitive curatorship of absentees and presumed death;
  • Death;
  • The divorce;
  • Those that determine the modification or extinction of any of the indicated facts and those that derive from legal imposition;

Each of these events naturally entails a separate, distinct, binding process. Through Castilho Law Firm International, you will be able to complete all these processes promptly and without any undesirable incidents or surprises. The marriage, divorce and death services referred to above fully cover the respective transcripts.

Personal life circumstances may influence certain changes in individual marital status. Thus, there is an obligation on the part of the taxpayers to communicate to the Portuguese State such changes, even when these occur externally to the national territory. Such amendments often have to be submitted to the Special Process for the Review of Foreign Judgment, in which the courts review and confirm the judgment. As an example: the transcription of the divorce that happened abroad, depends on the review and confirmation of the foreign sentence.

“Without prejudice to what is established in treaties, conventions, community regulations and special laws, no decision on private rights, rendered by a foreign court or by arbitrators abroad, is effective in Portugal, regardless of the nationality of the parties, without reviewed and confirmed. ” – Article 1094 No. 1 of the Code of Civil Procedure.

Divorce & Foreign Sentence Reviews

Widowhood abroad


Juridical Support

Meet us

Castilho Internacional Law Firm is headquartered in Aveiro, benefiting from two other offices. Visit our offices and learn more about our services. We elaborate prices related to the cost associated with our intervention. If you are abroad and you cannot go to our offices for possible clarification, you can always contact us via:

  • E-mail;
  • Phone call;
  • Text messages;
  • Video conference;

Migrant Associations

Castilho International Law Firm has been closely involved with Portuguese emigrants since its formation, in the country where they are emigrants. In this regard, we have entered into agreements and protocols of support and legal advice with serveral emigrant associations around the globe. In this way, its associates residing abroad can, at any time, clarify legal issues that need solved in Portugal.

Countless Portuguese emigrants contact us to resolve certain issues in Portugal, benefiting from a 24-hour personalized service, using the classic means of communication.

The proximity and tranquility, as if you were in Portugal, in one of our offices

Certain Portuguese emigrants associations annually, in partnership with our office, receive the presence of our lawyers at their headquarters, creating a specific day of legal, personal and face-to-face support for the Portuguese community, at no cost.

With Castilho International Law Firm, the Portuguese emigrant can consult a Portuguese lawyer face to face, in the country where he is emigrated. As if in Portugal, with all the comfort and tranquility, the client can, above all, put all their questions and doubts, and also give instructions for the resolution of their questions in Portugal.

Check the nearest association so that we know the dates of our trips to your country. Establish a direct relationship with your lawyer, and especially advance with the treatment of your issues in Portugal.

Relevant Informations

  • General consulates do not have legal powers to carry out changes concerning civil status in Portugal, and the applicant must hire a lawyer directly in Portugal. The consular posts do not also have the legal power to verify divorces and / or separations, even of Portuguese citizens. Such procedures must be carried out by the judicial authorities of the countries where Portuguese citizens reside with their spouses / ex-spouses. In order for foreign judgments to have legal value in Portugal, they must be reviewed and confirmed by the competent Portuguese court, and then homologation will be made. Once the sentence has been approved, the court will request the proper conservatory to make an endorsement of it on the birthright of the holder.
  • The Documents of the Divorce Process can be copied and recognized by the Consulate or Embassy, ​​before being sent to the lawyer in Portugal;
  • The Consulates do not have the capacity to indicate contacts of lawyers, although the client can do it through our offices;
  • It constitutes an obligation for the Portuguese citizen (both by birth and by assignment) to keep his / her current civil status and his / her civil identification documents (Citizen Card / Passport) up to date;
  • In cases of divorce or separation, the name of the Portuguese citizen will remain as married until the above process is executed and the registration is recorded the birth seat.



T: 00351 234 482 214
3800-220 – AVEIRO
T: 00351 213 261 593
1250-140 – LISBOA
T: 0034 911 310 612
28001 – MADRID