Living in Italy
Congratulations, you have made the decision to move to Italy! One of the things you will have to become accustomed to in Italy is the red tape. Getting a residency card, Permesso di Soggiorno is one of the first things you will need.
Things to know about submitting your residence permit, Permesso di Soggiorno, application:
All non-EU citizens need to apply for a residence permit, Permesso di Soggiorno.
EU citizens do not need a residence permit, Permesso di Soggiorno. Eu citizens can get a residency card at the police station.
Applications for residence permits, Permesso di Soggiorno, cannot be made online. All applications and documents must be presented in person and reviewed by an officer of the post office or police. At the present, there is no online application service. However, after you have applied, you may check the status of your case online.
To apply for residency, you must have a residence; a rent or buyers’ contract or a friend or family member who declares you are living with them. Hotels and temporary, self-catering apartments do not qualify. You do not need a resident card to rent an apartment.
The residence permit, Permesso di Soggiorno process is as follows:
- Fill out forms and make copies of all required documents
- Pay fees
- Present forms and make copies of all required documents in person to a postal officer or police officer
- You will get an appointment at the police station for further id verification and fingerprinting
- If you qualify and everything is in order, you will be issued a residence permit, Permesso di Soggiorno. You must go in person to collect it.
Easy Milano tips for residence in Italy application:
In our opinion, it is best to go to the post office. Ask for the yellow residence kit, (kit gialla per la residenza) which has a list of necessary documents and forms. You can apply at the police station or with an authorized organization, but they will send you to the post office anyway to make the payments for the fees.
Do not seal the envelope when submitting the request, an officer will have to see and review all documents.
Make copies and double copies of everything.
See more Easy Milano tips and articles in our Expat Guide section.
For Non-EU Citizens
All non- EU citizens require a residence permit, Permesso di Soggiorno. After January 1, 2021 this also applies to U.K. citizens. U.K. citizens who were already living in Italy before the EU withdrawal agreement have been recommended to get the new Electronic Residence Permit, Permesso di soggiorno electronico.
For EU Citizens
Rules for entry and stay for citizens of the European Union and their family members (legislative decree 6 February 2007, no. 30): EU citizens no longer require a residence card issued by the Police Headquarters (la Questura) for stays of less than three months. If you are staying longer than three months, registration with the Municipality is sufficient.
EU citizens who have submitted the application for a residency card before April 11, can register with the receipt issued by the Police Headquarters or the Italian Post Office and with self-certification of the requisites required by the new legislation.
Rules for relatives do not change. Any non-EU family members of an EU citizen, will have to apply for the residency card.
Acceptable reasons for Residency in Italy
If you come from a country outside the European Union, go to a post office, municipality office and authorized offices to request the issue and renewal of the residence permit for the following reasons:
- Adoption or foster care
- Update of residence card (change of residence, marital status, insertion of children, change of passport, photo update)
- Residence permit update (change of domicile, marital status, insertion of children, change of passport)
- Waiting for employment
- Acquisition of citizenship awaited
- Asylum renewal
- EU residence permit for long-term residents
- EU residence permit for long-term residents requested by the cohabiting family member
- Residence permit conversion
- Duplicate residence card
- Duplicate residence permit
- Minor aged family member (under 14)
- Work, special cases provided for in Article 27 of the Consolidated Immigration Act
- Seasonal employment
- Religious reasons
- Elective residence (retirement)
- Renewal statelessness status
- Study (Article 39 TUI)
- Professional training internship
- Research (art.27 ter TUI)
- Research – Job search (Article 27 ter TUI)
- Research – Mobility (Article 27 ter TUI)
- Student – Job search (Article 39 bis.1 TUI)
- Student (Article 39 bis TUI)
- Pupil (Article 39 bis TUI)
- Trainee, internship (Article 39 bis TUI)
For each situation, you will be required to provide specific documentation. For example, for “Elective residence” you must demonstrate you can economically support yourself (proof of income or pension), for employment you will need to present a copy of your work contract. See list and requirements here. Authorities will also want to see that your visa request and residency request are the same.
For all other situations, contact the Police Headquarters (la Questura). If you have the authorization and ask for a residence permit for work or family to be issued, contact the Immigration Office.
If you are a foreign family member of an Italian citizen or a citizen of the European Union and you are applying for a residence card for a family member of an EU citizen (Carta di soggiorno per familiare di cittadino UE), you can choose to submit the application through the Post Office or directly at the Police Headquarters.
If you are a citizen of the European Union, in line with the rules referring to entry and residence for citizens of the European Union and their family members (decreto legislativo 6 febbraio 2007, nr. 30), you no longer need a residence card issued by the Police Headquarters: for stays of less than three months, while for stays longer than three months, registration with the Municipality is sufficient, as is for an Italian citizen.
Apply at The Post Office
If you come from a country outside the European Union, use the free yellow kit (ask for the “kit gialla per la residenza”) that you find in all post offices and fill it in carefully following the instructions enclosed inside. The kit contains a list of documents you will need along with payment information for the application fees and required docuemtents:
- A valid passport or equivalent id document, for identification by postal operators
- receipt of the postal order payment of the amount due for the application for the Electronic Residence Permit
- photocopy in A4 format of the same identification document (please note that only the pages containing the personal data of the holder and the stamps of the entry and exit visas are required)
- A4 size photocopy of all further documentation requested in the instructions.
(See the kit for all required documents for your situation)
Submit all required documents and payment receipts to a Postal officer, after the application has been submitted and your identity has been verified you will be issued a letter containing the date, time and place regarding the appointment to be handled at the Police Headquarters.
Sportello Amico (citizen and resident services)
The kit must be delivered in an open envelope to post office at Sportello Amico, the citizen and resident service counter at most post offices. If you are requesting a renewal, you must also provide a copy of the expired residence permit and you must show your passport. To find the post office nearest to you, insert your address to the search bar on the Poste.it website.
Apply at the Municipality City Hall Or Other Authorized Organization
If you go to the Municipality city hall (il commune) or other authorized organization (such as ITAL UIL, ACLI, CAF, SIAS, ENAPA, INCA), you do not need the kit provided by the post office: qualified personnel will help you with procedures. Assistance is free to complete the application, but payment for the application fees and stamp are made through the Post office.
Fees and Costs
All residence permit cards are now electronic.
The costs for the Electronic Residence Permit is:
- €30,46 which can be made at the post office: download form
- €30,00 fee to submit the application
- €16,00 for the revenue stamp (marca da bollo)
Keep All Receipts and Copies
You will need to keep all receipts and the hologram code that is issued to you by the post office operator. For residence permit renewals, it must be attached to the expired permit.
Upon submission, the officer or assistant will issue an affidavit (lettera di convocazione) containing the information regarding your appointment at Police Headquarters (la Questura): the date, time and for further id and fingerprinting.
Check the Status
To check the status of your application, consult the website PortaleImmigrazione.it . Once your electronic residence permit is ready, you will receive the information necessary for collection from the Police Headquarters.
To find an office and make an appointment to collect your residence permit, go to Poliziadistato.it
Useful Numbers and Links
To find post offices with Sportello Amico
The toll-free number is free, from landlines and mobile phones, and is active from Monday to Saturday from 8.00 to 20.00.
Contact Center for information on the progress of your practice
The toll-free number is free, from landlines and mobile phones, and is active from Monday to Saturday from 8.00 to 20.00
Find a Post Office and FAQs about the application process
General information and requirements for immigration to Italy
Find a Police headquarters (Questura) closest to you, or check status of your (you will need case number)
Minister of Foreign Affairs provides general information about immigration and visas for Italy
Written by Anthony Ryan and Celia Abernethy for Easy Milano
Easy Milano makes an effort to provide accurate and updated information. Please refer to the correct agencies and offices for exact procedures and requirements, all links are provide in the article.
This article last updated: March 2, 2021.