Non-EU family members of EU citizens living in Italy: what happens if the principal does not have an income in Italy?

Mar 16, 2021

According to Decree 30/2007 – an EU citizen can register with personal income, not specifying this should be generated in Italy.

Indeed, one can register with foreign payslips or foreign bank account statement (though some local Municipalities may ask for an Italian bank account), if the minimum income requirement is met (for the year 2021 this is € 5.983,64 per person + € 2.991,82 per each additional family member).

But what happens when the EU citizen has NON-EU family members joining in Italy and there is no Italian income? In such cases, things might get a little bit trickier than one could expect.

Non-EU family members of EU citizens must apply for the “carta di soggiorno”  art. 10 of Decree 30/2007. This is a paper format permit and is issued for a validity of 5 years for the first application, once renewed it will have an indefinite duration, as long as requirements continue to be met.  The EU citizen will have to provide proof of being registered with local Town Hall and sufficient proof of income will be requested for the “carta di soggiorno” application of the non-EU citizens. Most individuals would have just settled in Italy and would not yet have an Italian tax return nor income generated in Italy. This should not be a problem if there is sufficient income generated elsewhere. However, this is far from being the case, as in practice, there is a well-established tendency to request Italian income among most Immigration offices.

The result is that when there is no income generated in Italy the “carta di soggiorno” is often not issued and a 2-year family permit is granted instead.

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