Italy’s Self-Employment Visa for Foreigners

Any foreigner (non-EU national) can apply for the Italian self-employment visa if he or she intends to carry out any industrial/professional or commercial activity, or intends to set-up a commercial company and/or to hold a corporate office in any corporation incorporated in Italy.

The Italian self-employment visas are restricted by annual quotas that are established on a yearly basis by the Italian Government. This temporary residence visa has an initial duration of maximum two years which can later be renewed each time for a similar duration. once the applicant holds this temporary residence visa for a five years period (like any other long-term visa), the applicant can obtain a permanent Residence Permit which may be converted into the Italian nationality at a later stage.

In order to obtain this type of visa, the applicant must provide evidence of the following:

  • having the necessary authorisations, clearances, licenses, etc., if the activity to be performed requires a certain authorisation under the Italian law;
  • having financial means equal to at least €4752 per year;
  • having the availability of a suitable accommodation (evidence of which is to be provided by means of a contract of purchase or a rental or lease agreement of a real estate, or by means of a legal statement by an Italian legal resident who undertakes to provide the applicant with a suitable accommodation).

The above-mentioned documentation/applications for licenses, authorisation etc. must be filed in Italy (normally through a legal attorney) while to obtain an authorisation to work, which is released by the local Italian Police Office (subject to the availability of the yearly quotas).

The authorisation to work is then submitted to the Italian Consulate in the applicant’s country of residence: upon exhibition of the authorisation to work, the Italian Consulate issues a visa which allows the holder to legally enter into Italy.

Even in this case, the holder of this particular visa is not bound to make any particular kind of investment in Italy as is the case normally in other countries.

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