In order to follow the general trend towards decreasing social contacts and interactions as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, Decree-Law no. 126/2021 was published on 30 December 2021 to establish a temporary legal framework for authentic acts, terms of authentication of private documents and legalisations to be made by videoconference.
This Decree-Law sets out the situations where it will be possible to carry out remotely these acts that until now required the presence of the interested parties before the professional drawing up the documents (notaries, lawyers, solicitors, consular agents, among others). This will be done through an online platform especially designed for this purpose, accessible at https://justica.gov.pt.
According to the new Decree-Law, the following acts can be executed remotely:
- Acts implying the constitution, recognition, acquisition, modification or extinction of property rights, right of use, use and habitation, surface or servitude (ex. Property purchase and sale agreement);
- Acts implying the constitution or modification of “propriedade horizontal”.
- Promissory agreement for the alienation or encumbrance of real estate whenever erga omnes effectiveness is agreed, or the assignment of the contractual position arising from those promissory agreements.
- Constitution of mortgage, its assignment, modification or extinction, the assignment of priority to the respective registration, as well as the assignment of income.
Other acts concerning facts subject to land registration, as well as Wills and acts related thereto are excluded from this provisional framework and shall be executed in person.
The new temporary regime enters into force on April 4, 2022 and will be applicable for a period of two years.
Although executed remotely, the protection of the grantors’ interest by independent attorneys who monitor and prepare the wording of the deeds is of extreme importance.
The information provided herein is general, shall not be deemed as legal advice and does not prevent the reader from seeking such advice on a case-by-case analysis.
An article written by Sara Carvalho de Oliveira and Rita Sequeira Marcolino | MATLAW