In general, people acquire Portuguese citizenship in one of three ways: wish-effect, adoption, or naturalization. When a candidate is married to a Portuguese citizen, a wish-effect is the relevant pathway. Portugal grants citizenship to the spouse or legally recognized cohabitant of a Portuguese citizen via wish-effect. More simply, the person must declare their wish to be Portuguese.
I. Persons married to a Portuguese citizen for at least three years are eligible for citizenship, regardless of residency provided they meet the following criteria:
i. demonstrate sufficient knowledge of the Portuguese language; and
ii. maintain active ties to the national community; and
iii. possess no convictions with a prison sentence of more than three years; and
iv. do not serve as a civil servant to a foreign state; and
v. have not rendered non-compulsory military service to a foreign state.