Applicable Law

1.    In your national system, do you have an arrangement which broadly follows that description? If so, what is it called in your language(s)? Please describe it in this factsheet.

Portuguese Law specifically rules the condominium or horizontal ownership (propriedade horizontal in Portuguese) as a special kind of ownership. The condominium is entirely regulated at the Portuguese Civil Code (PCC) – from Article 1414 until Article 1438-A.

The condominium, according to Portuguese Law, implies that the several units of which a building is composed, are capable independent from each other and may, therefore, belong to different owners (Article 1414 PCC)

In Portugal only can be subject do horizontal property legal regime the units which, besides being independent, are distinct and separate from each other, and have an output suitable for a common part of the building or to the street (Article 1415 PCC).

The horizontal property regime can also be applied, mutatis mutandis, to sets of adjacent buildings functionally linked together by the existence of common parts affected to the use of all or some units that compose them (Article 1438-A PCC).

The horizontal property implies a title which can be created by contract, through a deed, by acquisitive prescription, administrative decision or judgment rendered in an action in which common ownership is divided or in process inventory or partition among heirs (Article 1417 PCC).

Close to the horizontal property legal regime and able to be combined with it is the real right of time sharing, regulated by Decree-Law n º 355/81 of 31 December.

Also close and able to be combined with the condominium are the tourist ventures which can be implemented on buildings subject to horizontal property legal regime. It is the case of the tourist ventures in plural ownership, comprising lots or units and one or more buildings (Article 52 et seq. Decree-Law n. º 39/2008 of 7 March, which establishes the legal regime of the ventures tourist)

Pursuant to subparagraph b) of Article 2 of the Land Registry Code (LRC) are subject to registry the legal facts which determine the formation or modification of the horizontal property.

Under subparagraphs b) and c) of paragraph1 of Article 92 of the LRC, is allowed provisional registration of:

  • The creation of horizontal property prior to completing the construction of the building.
  • The legal facts relating to units before the final registration of the constitution of horizontal property.

2.    If your national system does not have an arrangement like that, or if it does, but also has a different arrangement which is commonly used to govern the ownership of apartments, please also describe, in this fact sheet, the arrangements commonly used.

There is no different arrangement commonly used to govern the ownership of apartments beyond the horizontal property regime.

3.    In your national system, which laws or regulations rule the arrangements you describe (or are relevant for them)?

The horizontal property regime is regulated at the Portuguese Civil Code (PCC) – from Article 1414 until Article 1438-A.

Under the Land Register Code must be taken into account the following Articles:

  • subparagraph b) paragraph 1 Article 2.
  • subparagraph l) paragraph 2 Article 75-A.
  • Article 81.
  • paragraph 2 Article 82.
  • subparagraph b) e c) paragraph 1 Article 92.
  • subparagraph q) paragraph 1 Article 95.
  • paragraph 2 Article 99.