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Tax Guide 2021 | Social Security

Last reviewed 27 July 2022

Persons liable for Social Security contributions

Social security contributions (either predetermined by law or agreed upon by conventions) are due on the remunerations  obtained by:

  • employees;
  • board members;
  • self-employed workers.

Excluded income

  • Daily allowances (capped at the amount determined  for PIT purposes).
  • Supplementary retirement pensions.
  • Supplementary sickness benefits.
  • Transportation expenses. (1)
  • Profit distributions.
  • Compensation for unused holidays or days off.
  • Compensation for the termination of the labour contract. (2)
  • Lunch allowance (capped at the amounts determined  for PIT purposes) and cost of meals made available at the employer’s canteens.
  • Occasional subsidies granted to employees and respective relatives for medical assistance/medicines.
  • Subsidy for the employees’ family expenses namely kindergarten, pre-school, educational facilities, retirement homes and other social support services or facilites. 
  • Discounts granted to employees for the acquisition of shareholdings in the employer company or in group companies.


(1) In case the company makes available transportation to its employees that does not exceed the value of the social pass, or, in its absence, the amount that would result from using public transportation. In all these cases this benefit should have a general character.
(2) The exemption is applicable in the following situations:
  i) following a declaration of illegal termination of employment issued by a court;
  ii) following a collective dismissal; elimination of the job concerned; inability of the employee to perform the work; lack of prior notice for termination; expiration of the work contract and termination by the employee;
  iii) following the termination of the labour contract prior to the end date, in case of labour contracts with a term.

 

Description

Employee

Company

Employees

11%

23.75%

Students in school holidays

0%

26,1%

Disabled people with undetermined term labour contract (1)

11%

11.9%

Very long-lasting unemployment

11%

(2)

First employment and long-lasting unemployment

11%

 (3)

 

 

 

Employees in early-retirement period, whose agreement foresees:

1) Suspension of the performance of work

8.6%

18.3%

2) Reduction of the performance of work

Rate determined at the time of the early-retirement applies

Pensioners performing work:

1) Old Age 
- Performing public functions 
- No public functions performed

7.8%
7.5%

17.5%
16.4%

2) Invalidity
- Performing public functions
- No public functions performed

9.2%
8.9%

20.4%
19.3%

Statutory board members (4)

9.3% / 11%

20.3% / 23.75%

Self-employed

21.4% /25.2% (5)

7%/10% (6)

Short term assignment

To other countries

(7)

-

To Portugal

 

(8)

-

     

(1) Ability to work is less than 80%.
(2) Exemption for a period of 3 years.
(3) 50% temporary reduction on the contribution owed by employers, for a maximum period of 5 years (in case of young people looking for a first job) or 3 years (hiring of long-term unemployed people), under certain conditions and requirements.
(4) Minimum cap of one Social Support Index (amounting to € 443.20 in 2022). Board members performing management or administration functions are entitled to protection in the event of unemployment. The applicable rates are 34.75% - 23.75% to the employer and 11% to the employee. A rate of 20.3% (employer) and 9.3% (employee) applies for other board members.
(5) After the first twelve months of activity. Social protection granted to self-employed workers who are entrepreneurs, and owners of Individual Establishments of Limited Responsibility and respective spouses shall include the right to protection in the event of unemployment. In these cases, the contribution rate is set at 25.2%. 
(6) A 7% contribution rate is due by employers in case 50% to 80% of the total amount the activity of a self-employed worker is carried out on behalf of the same employer in a given calendar year (natural or legal person, regardless of the respective nature and purpose). If representing more than 80% of the activity, the applicable rate is 10%. This obligation applies only in case self-employees are obliged  to make contributions with an annual income exceeding 6 x Social Support Index (€ 2,659.20, considering the Social Support Index in force in 2022).
(7) May continue to make contributions in Portugal.
(8) May continue to make contributions in the country of origin, being temporarily exempt in Portugal.

 

 

Employees working temporarily in Portugal, who are nationals of a country with which Portugal has signed a Social Security Convention, may be exempt from contributions.

 

Country

Exemption (months) (1)

Angola

24 (4)

Argentina

12

Austrália

48

Brazil

60

Cabo Verde

24

Canada

24

Channel Islands (Jersey, Guernsey, Alderney, Herm, Jethou) and Isle of Man

12

Chile

36

         

European Union Member States, EEA and Switzerland

24 (2)

Guinea-Bissau

24 (4)

Ibero-Americana

12 (3)(5)

         

Índia

60

Marrocos

36

Mozambique

24

Moldova

24

Philippines

24

Principality of Andorra

24

Quebec (Canada)

24

São Tomé and Príncipe

24 (3)

Tunísia

24

Turkey

12

Ukraine

12

United Kingdom

24

         

United States of America

60

Uruguay

12

Venezuela

24

 

(1) This period may be extended, taking into consideration the provisions of the applicable agreement.
(2) Applicable to Switzerland, Lichtenstein, Norway and Iceland.
(3) The Convention only be effective between those States when the Implementing Agreement enters into force for those States.
(4) These conventions are not yet in force.
(5) This Convention is only in force in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Spain, Paraguay, Perú, Uruguay and Portugal.



Liability for Social Security


Liability for Social Security

Description

Social Security

Taxation

Exemption

Salaries, holidays and Christmas allowances, commissions

x

Members of statutory board

x
(minimum basis of 1 Social Security Index) (1)

Cash shortage allowance

Up to 5% of the monthly salary

Daily allowance in Portugal

Directors

Up to € 69.19/day

Others

Up to € 50.20/day

Daily allowance for travels abroad

Directors

Up to € 100.24/day

Others

Up to € 89.35/day

Mileage allowance (own car)

Up to € 0.36/Km

Company car – acquisition/private use

(2)

Non-work related travel expenses

x

– 

Loans granted by the employer – acquisition of permanent private house

x

Loans granted by other entities when the employer bears the interest (totally or partly)

x

Loans granted by the employer – other purpose

x

Extraordinary profit distribution/profit distribution

(3)

– 

Overtime/regular bonuses

x

– 

Working hours exemption

x

– 

Indemnity for the termination of the labour contract

– 

Up to (average of the regular salary of the last 12 months) * years of work (4)

Retirement pension, company’s complement/Social Security

– 

x

Early retirement

x

– 

Retirement insurance

– 

x

Share plans

– 

x(5)

Lunch allowance

– 

Up to € 4.77/day

Meal vouchers

– 

Up to € 7.63/day

Child tickets

– 

x

Education tickets

– 

x

Housing allowance

x

– 

Employer subsidies (health, education)

– 

x

(1)  Social Support Index for 2022: € 443,20.
(2) The benefit from the private use of a company car is only subject to taxation in case of stipulation per written agreement, subject to conditions. For the purpose of obligations to make Social Security Contributions, additional requirements should be met.
(3)  Profit distributions to employees are subject to Social Security contributions. However, liability to Social Security will only arise once further regulations are published.
(4) In case of entitlement to unemployment allowances. Managers, board members, directors of companies, public managers or representatives of permanent establishments in Portugal of non-resident entities: no liability to make contributions arises regarding  the compensation for termination of employment contracts, for redundancies. ; the inability of employees  of performing  the work; for lack of prior notice for termination; expiration of the work contract, termination by the employee and termination of the labour contract prior to the end date, in case of labour contract with a term.
(5) It is not included in the basis for computation of social security contributions the amounts corresponding to the discount granted to employees on the acquisition of own shares of the employer or other group companies.

© 2022 PwC. This communication is of an informative nature and intended for general purposes only. It does not address any particular person or entity nor does it relate to any specific situation or circumstance. PricewaterhouseCoopers Tax Services TLS, Lda. We will not accept any responsibility arising from reliance on information hereby transmitted, which is not intended to be a substitute for specific professional business advice.

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