This page is dedicated to taxation and fiscal matters in Italy. Here follows information about the tax identification code, the Italian taxation system and agreements against double taxation.
TAX IDENTIFICATION CODE (codice fiscale)
The tax identification code (I) is the citizen's fiscal identification number and it recognises citizens when dealing with Italian Authorities and Administrations, indeed it is required in Italy for all sort of procedures (e.g. applying for a permit of stay, opening a bank account, applying for the National Health Service, renting a flat, applying for a fixed telephone line, etc.).
The application must be made to a local tax office of the Italian Inland Revenue (Agenzie delle Entrate). Click here to find the nearest local office.
The tax identification code is issued immediately and free of charge. EU/EEA citizen must bring a valid passport or another form of ID; non EU/EEA must bring the passport with a valid visa and a copy of it (clearly showing personal data and visa). For further information, please visit the Agenzia delle Entrate Webpage.
The tax system is managed by the Agenzia delle Entrate (Italian Inland Revenue) at national level while taxes are levied at national, regional and municipal level and they can be grouped into two main categories:
1. Direct taxes such as on personal income (known as IRPEF – Imposta sul Reddito delle Persone Fisiche), on the income of enterprises (IRES – Imposta sul Reddito delle Società) and on regional productive activities (IRAP - Imposta Regionale sulle Attività Produttive).
2. Indirect taxes such as on goods, services or imports (IVA – Imposta sul Valore Aggiunto, equivalent to VAT), on real estate (ICI – Imposta Comunale Immobili), etc..
Along with the main taxes, which are applied at national level, there are also local taxes (e.g. tax on municipal solid waste management).The Tax Year runs from 1st January to 31st December
All workers are subject to taxation of their income or other benefits (reimbursements for business trips and lunch tickets are in principle exempt but specific rules apply, according to national provisions, to the system used and to the regulations of each organisation). The amount of taxes to be paid varies according to the type and duration of the work contract. In general, income tax is deducted at source by employers on the basis of the estimated annual income. Tax balance due is calculated at the end of each year.
In general, the tax basis depends on the type of contract (work contract, fellowship, or assegno di ricerca, etc.) although there are some exceptions:
- Erasmus Mundus fellowships are IRPEF and IRAP tax free (according to Risoluzione n. 109/E del 23 aprile 2009);
- Assegni di ricerca (research grants) are IRPEF and IRAP tax free (according to Legge Finanziaria 2003).
According to Law n. 238 of 30th December 2010 and Decree 3/06/2011 of the Ministry of Economy and Finance, workers - EU citizens and born after January, 1st 1969 - may benefit from fiscal incentives when returning to Italy after a period of work out of Italy or their country of origin for at least 24 months. More information can be requested from the Agenzia delle Entrate, the Italian PATRONATI and CAF (Centre for Fiscal Assistance).
Tax residency (residenza fiscale)
Taxation depends on the status in Italy (tax resident or not). The “tax residency” (residenza fiscale) is different to the “Anagrafe residency”. Foreigners living in Italy will be classified as tax residents if:
- for 183 days of a calendar year they were registered at the municipal Anagrafe della Popolazione Residente - APR (permanent resident citizens), or
- for 183 days of a calendar year they had their main place of business or residence in Italy, or
- for 183 days of a calendar year they had their centre of vital interest (i.e. family) in Italy.
Income Tax return
In general a tax return (Dichiarazione dei redditi) is due for workers each year by the end of April (or end of May in case you address to a CAF or a qualified professional for assistance).
Employees, “parasubordinate” workers and pensioners can submit tax return and claim their income and tax deductible expenses (medical and certain educational expenses; health insurance; etc..) using the 730 Form (Modulo 730) in order to ascertain whether they may have overpaid or they may pay back the extra money. In both cases the amount will be directly paid out or deducted with the July salary.
Please contact the host organisation for specific information on taxes and tax return according to the work contract and length of stay in Italy.
For further information about the procedure, conditions and documentation, visit the Agenzia delle Entrate webpage.
For a practical glossary on taxation provided by Agenzia delle Entrate, click here
BILATERAL AGREEMENTS AGAINST DOUBLE TAXATION
Foreign researchers who have permanent residence in a country that has signed an agreement against double taxation with Italy may be allowed to choose whether to pay taxes in their country of residence or in Italy. In order to benefit from a bilateral agreement, the researcher should provide proof of the actual payment of taxes in his/her country of residence (in general this statement is issued by Inland Revenue or equivalent body).
Please contact your host organisation well in advance to enquire about the procedure to follow once you are in Italy.
Click here for further information on the agreements for a list of signatory countries and to read the agreements.
PROFESSIONAL FISCAL ASSISTANCE IN ITALY: CAF AND PATRONATI
Professional and qualified assistance for family reunion applications, household income (ISEE), family benefits, taxation and tax returns, etc. is provided by authorised offices called CAF (Centro Assistenza Fiscale - Centre for Fiscal Assistance) and PATRONATI which can give you professional support. Ask your host organisation about CAF and PATRONATI with multilingual staff that may be available in the city you live in.