Are you planning to start a family soon? Here is some vital information on family and maternity leave if you are living or intending to live in Portugal.
As an overview, family and maternity benefits for children and youth help families in supporting and educating children and young people. They are granted to families with children less than 24 years old (27 years in the case of illness or accident) and enrolled in higher education. The monthly amounts are determined by the family income, the number of beneficiaries and their ages.
Parents can require prenatal allowance during pregnancy from the 13th week of gestation or after the child’s birth for six months from the month of birth. It is important to mention that all national citizens, as well as EU citizens, third-national citizens, refugees and stateless people living in Portugal are eligible to a prenatal allowance.
Moreover, maternity care is offered in 2 cases: either free or low-cost to people who have made health insurance contributions through the social security system in Portugal, as well as to their dependent family members. If you have a baby or more, but you are not a resident, you need to have private health insurance to cover costs or pay full medical costs.
Maternity allowance is awarded for statutory maternity leave, which can be taken either as 120 consecutive days or in two separate leaves as follows: 30 days before birth and 90 days after birth. In the case of twins or multiple births, the 120 days period is extended by another 30 days for each additional child. A full salary is paid during this period. If a mother opts for an extended maternity leave of 150 days, she receives 80% of her salary.
Fathers are entitled to paternity leave in Portugal, which can be taken by employed fathers in terms of five working days after the child’s birth. The Father may also take additional ten days within 30 days of the birth, which do not need to be consecutive. In particular cases, a father is entitled to the same rights as a mother: death of the mother, physical or psychological incapacity of the mother, or a mutual decision by the parents to shift roles in taking care of the child.
There are other special periodic cash benefits: a special education allowance is payable for children up to 24 years old if they are attending an institution for special education or receiving other specific educational assistance. They are also granted a monthly living allowance. Disabled Persons, who are permanently incapable of work and need for constant care from a third person, receive an additional care benefit.
Another cash benefit is the survivor’s pension, which is paid to the spouse, ex-spouse aged at least 35, and person with whom the beneficiary was living, descendants, including unborn or adopted children, as well as stepchildren, relatives in the ascending line when there are no other family members with an entitlement, children until the age of 18 (25 or 27 in case of further or higher education).
There is also the Death Grant, a lump sum cash benefit paid to the family members, which is granted to recompense for the extra expenses to ease the reorganization of family life. Funeral Expenses Grant is a fixed cash benefit paid as a lump sum, to compensate for the funeral expenses paid by the applicant for the funeral of a member of his household or of any other person, including unborn children, as long as the claimant is resident in Portugal and can prove that she or he has paid for the expenses.
Should you need any help in figuring out the details of family and maternity leave benefits in Portugal, feel free to contact our office or online, anytime.