Thank you to Samantha Cox for this Information.
The British Ambassador to Portugal Christopher Sainty arrived in Madeira on Thursday. He hosted a Round table discussion about Brexit and the implications for UK nationals living in Portugal. I attended on behalf of my Madeira Active group and for Tobis’ Blog readers. The Ambassador gave a summary of where things are currently at….which isn’t so different to what you may have already heard! There are simply no definitive answers at this point in time, only advice given where our British government are at, and all I can do is, reiterate a lot of what you have already been told. So, there are a few points to mention again.
1. If you live here and have not registered yourself as a resident yet DO IT NOW before March 29th.
2. If you are a ‘swallow’ and spend a lot of time here (90 days or less and no more than 180 days in a year) it may be worth while taking residencia and before March 29th!
3. For those who were asking about driving licences swap them for a Portuguese one and again, before March 29th.
The emphasis is….no one knows if there will be a no deal scenario by that date but be prepared as if there were one. On a lighter note, the Portuguese government wish to remain with their reciprocal arrangements, so in reality those of us who are worried and live here, nothing really changes ..our rights will be honoured ..again to be sealed. In the event of a no deal…this will probably answer most of the questions that you asked, which I did ask on your behalf at the meeting! As we are so close to the time limit, it would be prudent to do any of the points above if you haven’t done so anyway. If a no deal is finalised then we will fall under the rules of a 3rd world arrangement, but as I understand it Portugal will reciprocate the good relations we have already had, so no visa for a 90 day stay or less, only a stamping of passport etc…..That interim period was discussed, I am still not understanding the difference between deal/no deal and that period of time! And again, no one knows yet! Pet passports was another subject I brought up and the British consul to Portugal will send me related info on that as it was a complicated issue. Pensions will probably be based on reciprocal arrangement. The allowance of Dual Nationality will remain. Passports will need to be valid for 6 months to travel. There are two unclear modes that need discussion on the event of a no deal….the right to vote and the rite of forward movement. If a no deal then the vote would be negotiated….as residents of Portugal , there would be no right to move to Spain for example. There are some very complex issues….but what I gained from this is this….if there is a deal, we need not worry, but if no deal, those of us who have registered by taking residencia, need not worry either, as we will retain rights already in existence. If you are on Facebook ‘The Brits in Portugal’ government page is where they update the latest information and will keep everyone abreast with the current situation and also two pages that you can follow on gov.co.uk ‘living in Portugal guide’ and ‘UK nationals living abroad’. I will also have some literature to had out at the February dinner.
Both Sam and I have conducted a Poll, aimed at British residents or part timers…this is so that we can gauge the number of people we can reach out to through both of our portals.
You can find my Poll at the top of the home page of my blog www.madeiraislandnews.com
Sams Poll is on the Madeira Active Facebook Page.