Category Archives: Uncategorised

By 18th January 2019

Expansion of ENEA reporting requirements Sounds a little dry, we appreciate, but these requirements are of interest to anyone engaged in building work on their property in Italy. There are very generous tax credits available for most types of “extraordinary” renovation and restructuring work, as well as for certain types of energy-saving improvements. Up to now there has been a requirement to certify that the energy-saving improvements are sufficiently effective. Now these requirements have been extended to cover certain types of structural works. In brief these include insulation of walls, roofs and floors, and double-glazing. They also now include certification of white goods, which can qualify for a small tax credit when purchased in connection with wider renovation work. In all cases, the work needs to be notified to the ENEA organisation within 90 days – this is best handled by the geometra or other technician involved in the work. Failure to notify ENEA correctly will mean you lose the benefit of the tax credit – so worth taking note!


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By 7th January 2019

Congratulations to Italy, which has become the first of the EU member states to guarantee the rights of UK citizens in a case of no-deal Brexit. According to reports in The Guardian, high level assurances have been given to the group representing the ca 60,000 Brits living in Italy – British in Italy – that were the UK to exit the EU without a deal, they would retain their rights to live and work in Italy. This is a huge relief to UK ex-pats in Italy and we can only hope it is swiftly followed by similar reassurances from other EU member states. How very satisfying though that Italy should be the first!


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By 7th January 2019

A good start to the New Year for those thinking of escaping the drear of a Brexit-bound UK and dreaming of relocation to Italy. The latest budget, approved by the Italian government at the end of December, includes an incentive aimed at encouraging the repopulation of the smaller towns and villages of the South of Italy. The incentive is offered to any pensioner who has not been resident in Italy in the previous 5 years and who moves to take up residency in Sicily, Calabria, Sardinia, Campania, Basilicata, Abruzzo, Molise or Puglia in any Comune with a population of less than 20,000. Those interested can opt to have all of their overseas income – not just their pensions – taxed at a fixed rate of 7%. The incentive lasts for 5 years. Five years in a hill-top town in Southern Italy? What’s not to like? Maybe by the time the incentive scheme ends they’ll have even sorted out the Brexit mess….


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By 27th November 2018

  Energy saving work – ENEA notification On Wednesday 21st November, the ENEA website was finally made fully functional. This is of interest to all carrying out energy saving improvements to their homes, which includes the installation of solar panels, new boilers, double glazing etc. In order to obtain the very generous tax breaks available for this kind of work, ENEA needs to receive detailed information/certification of the type of work carried out and its energy efficiency. The information needs to be notified to ENEA within 90 days of the end of the work, or of the date of final testing where relevant. For work completed between the beginning of this year (2018) and 21st November, the information needs to arrive within 90 days of 21st November 2018. The new website should make transmission of this information much simpler. However we would always recommend that this be delegated to a geometra or the technician who carried out the work – they may require payment. For you it is essential that the information reaches ENEA within the correct timescale, otherwise you will not be able to claim the tax credit for the energy-saving work undertaken. The new site is: http://ristrutturazioni2018.enea.it  


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By 9th November 2018

Good news in the current Finance Act (legge finanziaria) for those on the Forfettario scheme. This is the simplified scheme for small businesses which offers a discounted flat rate of tax, which historically has been 15%, or 5% for genuine start-ups. One of the criteria for qualifying for the scheme is that the business has a limited turnover: to date, the limit has depended on the type of business. Businesses classed as professional  –  English teaching, say or website design – would have a turnover limit of €30k, while an activity offering accommodation would be restricted to a turnover of no more than €50k. Unnecessarily complicated, we all thought, and for once the powers that be are in agreement. As of next year, the proposal is that the limit of turnover be raised to €65000 for all activities. For those already on the scheme, it is not yet clear whether the new turnover limit will also apply to 2018 earnings: we await clarification from the Agenzia. If so, it could be a busy couple of months in the run up to Christmas!


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By 9th October 2017

A bulletin from the front line of short term tourist rental contracts. Keen readers will recall the new law introduced earlier this year, requiring agents and intermediaries to deduct 21% from rental sums received in relation to short-term bookings of properties in Italy. The sums were to be paid directly to the Agenzia as a payment on account of the tax due from the owner – where the owner used the cedolare secca system the early payment would represent all the tax due; where the income was to be taxed under the marginal rates there would be a difference to be settled. As reported, Airbnb was not impressed by the idea of being required to act as unpaid tax collector on behalf of the Italian State and launched two major actions: the first was an appeal to the regional tax tribunal (TAR). More recently they have also launched an action on the basis of Anti Trust, claiming that the law is anti-competitive. Both actions refer to the law as a violation of the right to provide services and claim that  Airbnb is unfairly penalised in comparison to other sector operators. This last on the basis that Airbnb’s biggest rival, Booking. com, is unaffected as they do not collect monies on behalf of the owners. Both decisions are expected on 15th October, the day before the first round of the 21% tax withholdings is due: we will keep you informed.


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By 6th October 2017

Tucked away in the corners of last year’s budget lies a very generous incentive to incoming workers. It comes in the form of an extension to a scheme which originally aimed to encourage graduates to live and work in Italy. The scheme was then broadened to cover anyone working in specialist or highly qualified positions and finally has now been extended to cover any persons coming to work in Italy, including those registering as self-employed. Under the scheme, qualifying workers are granted a 50% reduction in their chargeable income. Further, where INPS (social security) is calculated on the basis of chargeable income this will also effectively be reduced by 50%. – not a bad offer in a high-tax environment. The incentives last for a period of 5 years. The qualifying requirements are that the worker is registered as resident in the local Comune, and that the work they do is carried out principally in Italy. Workers are expected to remain resident for a minimum of 2 years. The taxman is entitled to recover the value of the underpaid tax if you move away before the end of the two-year period. You need to be quick, though – if you want to qualify you have to show that you started work, whether as employed or self-employed, within 3 months of making your permanent move to Italy. If you want more details of this, or any of the other anti brain-drain schemes, please contact us.


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By 28th July 2017

The consequences of the new law on tourist rentals (D.L. 50/2017) are still far from clear…but help is at hand. One of the many problems of operating in this field has been the lack of guidance as to what makes an activity a business (which requires registration for IVA) and what counts as a non-business activity. In the absence of clear legislation on the point, professionals and clients have been left making a “best guess” at what a non-business rental might look like. This has included consideration of various factors such as overall turnover, number of guests, length of season, services offered, method of marketing etc. In the past a definitive finding has only emerged when the Agenzia has investigated and reached its own conclusions – a little late for those hoping for clarity beforehand. Now, we are told, the cavalry is on its way. It comes (or will come) in the form of a ministerial regulation to be issued by 19th September 2017. We are told the regulation will set out the criteria on the basis of which a tourist rental activity would be presumed to be exercised as a business. With the hope, of course, that by avoiding these criteria, the rest of us can sleep more easily, secure in the knowledge that the rental activity we run does not require registration for IVA. We await the publication of the regulation and will report back.  


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By 12th May 2017

Further updates about the important changes to the treatment of rental income in Italy mentioned below – the new Airbnb law. Recent legislation (D.L. 50/2017) introduces new rules on tourist rentals, which are defined as those of under 30 days. As of 1st June 2017 there will be an option to have the gross rental income taxed at a fixed rate of 21% under what is known as the “cedolare secca”. No costs are allowed against this income. We should make clear that for those who rent out their property directly, without using online portals or other intermediaries, this is only an option, so there is nothing to prevent you continuing to declare the rentals as you have to date.


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By 3rd May 2017

Once again a lightning move by the Italian government, this time in the field of short-term tourist rentals. The new Draft Law 50/2017 was published in the Official Gazette on 24th April and came into effect the following day. Its proposals are revolutionary: income from all short-term tourist rentals (defined as stays of under 30 days), whether organised directly or through agencies, AirBnB or similar online portals is to be taxed at a flat rate of 21% through the scheme known as cedolare secca.


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