Can I retire in Italy as a Foreign National?

It is a common choice made amongst those who reach retirement age in Britain to opt for international living during their later years. Warmer weather and different culture are just a couple of reasons why people choose to retire abroad, and a common destination for British retirees in Europe is Italy. It is entirely possible to move to and retire in Italy, so as long as you meet certain requirements before you relocate. However, the rules have changed for British nationals to move to Italy, since Brexit.

In this guide, we will explore the requirements when choosing to retire in Italy, as well as how Brexit has affected how non-Italian nationals can retire in Italy. We will also discuss the taxes that need to be paid when moving to Italy, what should be considered before moving, and how a solicitor can assist you. 

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What requirements you need to meet to retire in Italy

Find out more about retiring in Italy post-Brexit

Here’s what tax requirements you need to be aware of

Discover what factors you need to take into consideration before retiring in Italy

Here’s how we can assist you in gaining Italian citizenship

What are the requirements for retiring in Italy?

If you wish to retire in Italy, you will need to apply for an Italian elective residency visa, also known as an Italian retirement visa or simply an elective residence visa. It is granted by the Italian consulate, and applicants must not become employed once living in Italy; the elective residency visa is only for foreign nationals who wish to live and retire in Italy and need a residence permit.

In order to successfully apply for an elective residency visa, there are certain requirements that applicants must meet. For instance, you will need a minimum annual income (such as savings or a pension) of €31,000, which is increased to €38,000 for married couples. This increases by 20% for each dependant, such as children. Applicants must also have either a rental or purchased property in Italy, a valid passport, and marriage and birth certificates. If you are a non-EU citizen, you will need to also apply for an entry visa.

If you are finding it difficult to gather the necessary documents required to retire in Italy, or you need any assistance, get in touch with an Italian solicitor today to help you through the process.

Has Brexit affected how foreign nationals can retire in Italy? 

Retiring in Italy has changed for UK nationals post-Brexit, but it is not overly complicated. Non-European Union citizens have to apply for the elective residency visa, which an Italian solicitor can assist you with if you wish for permanent residency. Non-EU citizens can also still rent and buy property in Italy, but they must provide proof before retiring there.

UK nationals can also utilise the Italian healthcare system provided they acquire health insurance that lasts for at least a year. However, for retirees, the rules are slightly different. If the person wishing to retire in Italy has a United Kingdom state pension, they simply need to apply for an S1 form once they have moved there. The retiree can also put their spouse or any children under 26 on the S1 form and they will receive the same healthcare benefits. British retirees can still claim their state and work pensions when living in Italy, and if they wish to drive when living there, they must transfer their licence from a UK variant to an Italian one.

Do I need to pay any taxes when retiring in Italy?

Anyone who retires in Italy, whether they be EU or non-EU residents, will be subject to certain taxes. Italy requires all expats to pay a 7% tax on any foreign income, including pensions, in Southern areas of Italy such as Sicilia and Puglia. This is part of an incentive to get more non-Italian residents to move to Italy. Depending on where the retiree lives, tax rates can range from 23% to 43%.

For foreign retirees, Italy offers a range of tax incentives, such as a tax exemption for some non-Italian income for five years, such as real estate income. Inheritance tax is also considered low in Italy.

If you are considering retiring in Italy, it is important to seek expert legal advice to help you navigate potentially complicated processes, such as income tax and applying for a visa. To find out more, contact one of our Italian lawyers today.

What do I need to consider before retiring in Italy? 

Italy is a great place to retire, with an exceptional healthcare system and plenty of culture. Gaining citizenship is not as difficult as most countries, and the cost of living can be low, depending on where you choose to live. The south of Italy in particular is much cheaper than other regions, as well as having warmer weather and great landscapes.

Before choosing to retire in Italy, you should also consider how much income you have, and whether you will qualify for a visa. Failure to meet certain regulations could prevent you from retiring in Italy, which is why we advise seeking legal counsel as soon as possible.

How can Giambrone and Partners help me?

Retiring abroad is a big step and many retirees will need assistance in gathering all of the relevant documents. Choosing a solicitor to help you retire in Italy can make these processes easier, allowing you to focus on your plans post-retirement without having to worry about the legalities and requirements. Italian solicitors can help you apply for a visa, as well as get all of your financial documents in place as proof of your income.

To find out more, or to book a consultation with our international solicitors today, you can get in contact with us via our website.

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