Answering Questions for UK Nationals Moving to Italy
A message from British Embassy Rome
Thank you to everyone who joined our latest Q & A event for UK nationals. We focused our session on those newly arrived in Italy or thinking of moving to Italy.
FAQs about Living in Italy
You can find below a selection of the questions raised as well as some of those we were unable to answer during the live session itself.
Please check our Living in Italy guide for more information. You can find details there on how to register your residency, on healthcare access and on what actions you need to take before 31 December if you wish to settle in Italy.
If you have difficulties in registering or in obtaining the new attestazione you can also get in touch with the International Organization for Migration (IOM): UKnationalsIT@iom.int – tel. 800 684884
I am thinking of moving to Italy. If I do it this year will I enjoy lifelong rights in Italy after the end of the transition period?
During this year, UK nationals are able to live, work and travel in Italy as they did before the UK left the EU.
Provided you are lawfully resident in Italy before the end of the transition period, you will be protected by the Withdrawal Agreement.
You should try to register your residency in Italy by 31 December to secure your rights as a resident here. If you are unable to register you should ensure you keep evidence of living in Italy this year such as a work contract, rental contact, utility bills, bank statements etc.
Further information on applying for residency in Italy is available on the Living in Italy guide.
If you move your official residency to Italy this could have implications on your entitlements to healthcare and other benefits in the UK. You may not maintain the same access to benefits and services in the UK.
Further information on the Withdrawal Agreement is available at here.
I have a second property in Italy and spend half the year here. Do I need to spend a certain amount of time in Italy to have a residency status that is recognised?
If you are lawfully living in Italy by 31 December you will be covered by the Withdrawal Agreement. Your rights will be protected for as long as you remain lawfully living in Italy. You should register for residency as soon as you can. Italy requires you to register if you are staying in Italy for longer than 90 days.
If you register as a resident you will hold a residency status of an ‘ordinary’ (or temporary) resident. As an ordinary resident you will need to be present in the country for 183 days in a 365 day period otherwise you will break your residency status. These days do not have to be consecutive. By following these guidelines, you will build up continuous residency, which is measured in years. If over five years, if you have been in Italy for 183 days total across 365 days for five consecutive years, you will qualify for Permanent Residency.
As a permanent resident under the Withdrawal Agreement you are able to be absent from Italy for up to five years without losing your permanent residency status and your status under the Withdrawal Agreement.
Further information on applying for residency in Italy is available on our Living in Italy guide on gov.uk.
I have just arrived in Italy. What are the first things I need to do to ensure my rights are protected here?
You should apply for a Codice Fiscale (tax code) from the Italian ‘Agenzia delle Entrate’ if don’t have one already.
If you are not working or self-employed or your healthcare is not covered by the UK (for example you are not an S1 holder) you should obtain some form of health cover. In some regions you will be able to pay an annual fee to obtain healthcare cover, called ‘Iscrizione Volontaria’, or you may need a private health insurance policy.
You should register your residency – called ‘iscrizione anagrafica’ – with your local town hall or ‘comune’. Please check with your town hall what exact documentation you will need. This will depend on which route you are using to register as a resident (employed, self-employed, retired, financially self-sufficient, student etc.).
The local police will then visit the address that you have declared as your place of residence to check you live there.
After 45 days from your date of application you have the right to obtain your residency document if you haven’t already been issued with it. Your date of residency will start from the date of your application.
Once you have registered your residency you should request the new attestazione issued under Article 18.4 of the Withdrawal Agreement (‘attestazione di iscrizione anagrafica’). The document should include the words “Ai sensi dell’art.18.4 dell’Accordo sul recesso del Regno Unito e dell’Irlanda del Nord dall’Unione Europea e del decreto legislativo del 6 febbraio 2007, n. 30”.
If you need help in registering your residency or in obtaining the new attestazione di iscrizione anagrafica, please get in touch with the International Organization for Migration IOM, their details are on the Living in Italy guide.
I don’t think I will arrive in Italy this year due to the restrictions on travel as a result of the Covid pandemic. Can I apply for residency in Italy remotely?
You cannot apply for residency remotely as the local police will check that you live where you say you do.
To be protected by the Withdrawal Agreement you need to be able to evidence that you are lawfully living in Italy before 31 December. You should try to register your residency by this date. If you are unable to do so you should try to start the process and keep evidence of living in Italy by 31 December such as a work contract, rental contract, payment of utility bills etc.
I have no idea how to register my residency in Italy. It seems so complicated! Where can I find more information?
You can find information on how to register your residency on our Living in Italy page. You can also find there the Italian government’s guidance on residency registration in English as well as guidance issued to town halls by the Italian Association of Town Halls on registering UK nationals. You can also contact the International Organization for Migration IOM if you have difficulties, they provide hands-on support for UK Nationals trying to register their residency in Italy.
Once registered you should obtain the new ‘attestazione’ issued under the Withdrawal Agreement. You can find the Italian circular announcing this attestazione on our Living in Italy page. This includes a template of the document.
We have recently published two ‘How to…’ videos on residency on our UKinItaly Facebook page. These provide a step by step guidance for UK nationals.
When I arrive in Italy I’m going to be staying in a hotel as I haven’t found somewhere to live. Can I still apply for residency? I’m keen to do it before the end of the year.
You cannot register your residency using a hotel address (or AirBnB room or apartment). If you are staying in rented accommodation the rental agreement must have your name on it and be a formal, registered contract. If you are staying with friends or family they will need to complete a declaration confirming this.
You should check with your local town hall or ‘comune’ exactly what they require as evidence of your property.
If I arrive in Italy now and register for residency, do I then need to get the new attestazione as a second document? Or is it just one document I need?
If you have already registered your residency in Italy you now have the right to obtain the new attestazione from your town hall. It is issued under the Withdrawal Agreement and the document should make reference to it. Do not submit your current residency document to obtain the new attestazione as it can be issued in addition to it.
If you are new to Italy and are in the process of registering your residency, your town hall may issue you with only the new attestazione as your single residency document. That is because it refers to both the relevant EU law under which you are registering your residency and to the Withdrawal Agreement. Or your town hall may issue you first with a residency document issued under EU law and then the new attestazione. Either option is valid.
Please see our Living in Italy guide for more information.
Can I register for healthcare with my local health authority (ASL) before registering my residency?
You need to be registered as a resident to access state-funded healthcare in Italy and, at the same time, evidence of your entitlement to health cover is required when you register your residency.
If you’re employed or self-employed you have an automatic entitlement to register with the national health system. This is called ‘iscrizione obbligatoria’. Your work contract and/or last payslip and/or declaration from your employer will be evidence of your health cover when you register your residency or, if you are self-employed, evidence of registration to Chamber of Commerce or another professional order and VAT (aperture Partita IVA) or Social Security institute registration (apertura posizione INPS).
If you are not employed in Italy, evidence of health cover could be your UK S1 form. You are entitled to an S1 form if you claim an exportable UK state pension or another qualifying UK benefit, or you are a dependant of someone who does.
How can I access state-funded healthcare in Italy if I don’t work and I don’t pay social security contributions in Italy?
You may be able to register with ‘Iscrizione Volontaria’ by paying an annual fee, if you don’t qualify under other entitlements. This depends on the region of Italy you live in.
The fee covers one calendar year, from 1 January to 31 December, and each annual payment will also cover family dependants. Your ASL will tell you how much and how to pay, on the basis of previous year’s income, with a minimum fee of € 387,34 up to € 2.788,86.
Please note that you will not be asked to provide evidence of pre-existing health conditions when applying. Your payment receipt should be sufficient evidence of healthcare cover when registering your residency, but this might depend on where you live. Ask your Town Hall for more information.
You are then able to complete your healthcare registration with your ASL. You will be entitled to register with a GP and you will receive an Italian health card for use in Italy. You will not be entitled to an Italian EHIC (TEAM) but you might qualify for co-payments exemption (‘esenzioni’ ticket) if you meet the requirements, depending on the region where you live.
If you don’t qualify to register for access to state-funded healthcare, when applying for residency you’ll need to take out private health insurance.Your policy will need to be valid across Italy for at least one year and cover all eventualities for you and your family members.
I am a student. What options are available as evidence of health cover if I want to register my residency?
As a student you can register with Iscrizione Volontaria by paying an annual fee of € 149.77, depending on the region where you live. This special fee does not cover family members.
If you don’t qualify to register for access to state-funded healthcare, when applying for residency you’ll need to take out private health insurance.Ask your Comune for more information.
If you are a studentin Italy before the end of 2020 and you are habitually resident in the UK, you’ll be able to use your student UK-EHIC until the end of your course. From 1 January 2021, your EHIC will only be valid in Italy. However your UK EHIC will not be valid as evidence of health cover when registering your residency.
If I don’t move to Italy until next year, can I still register for residency and be protected by the Withdrawal Agreement?
Outside of any negotiated mobility provisions, the European Commission has confirmed that UK nationals who move or travel to a country in the Schengen area after the transition period will be treated as third country nationals under EU and Member State migration rules.
You should explore the precise details and provisions within Italian domestic immigration systems.
If you move to Italy next year you will not be protected by the Withdrawal Agreement. Stays of longer than 90 days in 180 days may require a visa and a permit of stay. Please check the Italian government’s website as well as the website of the Italian Consulate in the UK for more information.
British Embassy Rome
Easy Milano is the online publication for the international community of Milan. We offer practical tips, key information and essential insights about living and working in Italy. Easy Milano has been assisting English speaking expats in Milan since 1999.
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[…] Q&A with British Embassy Italy Session 04.02.21 A message to UK Nationals in Italy from Jill Morris, Her Majesty’s Ambassador – British Embassy Rome Answering Questions for UK Nationals Moving to Italy […]