FINDING A JOB IN ITALY
STUDYING IN ITALY
FINDING A JOB IN ITALY
STUDYING IN ITALY
Underaged students’ admission: compulsory education
Underaged foreigners that live in Italy may benefit from the right to education and this does not depend on the regularity of their residence permit. Every foreign student can be enrolled in a class at any moment during the year, even if the school year has already started. The choice of the right class depends upon:
Admission to degree programmes
All international citizens may get admission to one of the 1st, 2nd and 3rd cycle programmes of Italian higher education.
The two essential admission conditions are that they hold the minimum educational requirements and have a good competence in Italian.
If you want to attend university in Italy, you can find more information about types of higher education institutions (university and non-university sector), admission procedures, study programmes and degrees, student life, welfare services and other useful advice from the following website:
The academic year in Italy is made up of two semesters. The first semester starts in September/October and ends in January/February. The second semester starts in February and ends in July. The actual start and finish dates will vary in the different universities but each semester lasts around 20 weeks and is made up of a teaching period lasting around 14 weeks and an exam period lasting around 6 weeks.
Exams are held after the teaching period and are mainly oral exams although some courses will have written tests taking place during the semester or before the oral exam. Each exam will have a number of dates offered during the exam period and students can choose which date they wish to take the exam. They are also entitled to turn down a mark and take the exam again if they are not satisfied with the result. Rules apply as to how often a student can take an exam within an examination period.
Examinations are graded according to a scale ranging from 0 to 30, with 18 as a pass mark.
A “cum laude” may be added to the highest grade (30; 30 e lode) as a mention of special distinction.
All examination results are used to calculate the overall degree mark on a scale of 0 – 110. The final result is based on exam results plus the presentation of a project or dissertation in front of a Board of Examiners. The pass mark is 66 and students who obtain full marks of 110 may also be awarded ‘summa cum laude’ (110 e lode).
The internet is one of the best property searching tools. For information about renting or buying a property in Italy you can contact the following online estate agencies:
There are two types of tenancy contracts:
a ‘free market contract’ which lasts for four years with an option to renew for a further four years; a ‘convention contract’, which is for three years with an option to extend for a further two.
Non-residents are free to buy Italian property without any restrictions. It is advisable to appoint a bilingual lawyer to represent your interests, especially if you are not fluent in the local language.
|New Year’s Day||1st January|
|Liberation Day||25th April|
|Labour Day||1st May|
|Republic Day||2nd June|
|August Bank Holiday (Ferragosto)||15th August|
|All Saints’ Day||1st November|
|Immaculate Conception||8th December|
|Christmas Day||25th December|
|Saint Stephen’s Day||26th December|
EVENTS IN ITALY
New Year’s Concert: it is celebrated at the Scala Theatre in Milan and it is a classical music concert with the best International opera singers.
Sanremo: it is the most important music festival since 1951 which takes place in February. This town is situated near Genova and is famous also for its Casinò and flowers (there are beautiful flower fields). The festival is celebrated once a year at the Ariston Theatre and famous Italian and international singers take part in it.
Venice Carnival: it is an attraction where there is a parade in the main streets and squares of the city. In this parade there are decorated chariots and a lot of people dress up with famous and beautiful Venetian masks.
2nd June Parade: on this day the founding of the Italian Republic (1946) is celebrated. The President of the Republic Head makes a speech reminding us of the importance of the Republic. There is also a parade of all the armed forces and the Frecce Tricolori, the aerobatic demonstration team of the Italian Airforce, soars high in the skies in an incredible display.
Venice Film Festival: it is a film festival that takes place in Venice in September and the best International movies, directors and actors receive important awards. Giro D’Italia: it consists in a bike race around Italy. The most talented Italian and international cyclists of Italy take part in this competition.
Milan Fashion Week: it is the most important event of the fashion business. There are two: one in February, for the Fall-Winter Collection, the other in September, for the Spring-Summer Collection. The most famous Italian Fashion Houses like Armani, Dolce&Gabbana, Valentino put on show their latest collections. It attracts the most popular International fashion journalists.
New Year’s Eve Concerts: there is a concert in almost every important city. The most famous singers perform in these concerts and at Midnight there is the countdown for the New Year.
People like going skiing: there are a lot of ski resorts all over Italy. In fact there are two important mountain chains called the Alps and the Appennines situated in the northern and in the central part of the country. Some important ski resorts are, for example, Roccaraso (central Italy) and Cortina D’Ampezzo (Northern Italy).
Other popular pastimes are going to the cinema or for a walk in the city centre with friends or shopping. Shopping centres are open from 9.00 am to 8.00 pm while shops in the city centres are usually open from 9.00 am to 1.00 pm and from 4.00 pm to 7.30 pm.
Italy is surrounded on three sides by the sea. People who live in cities on the coasts like Pescara, Naples and Genoa rent a beach umbrella and deck chairs for the summer time and go to the beach to relax, sunbathe and swim in the sea. Instead, people who live in big cities that are situated in internal areas of the country like Milan, Florence and Turin, usually visit the most important monuments and museums of the city or go to the seaside in cities on the coast. Another important aspect of Italy is the food: in fact Italians love getting together and sharing a good meal and enjoying a superb glass of wine.
THE ITALIAN SOCIAL SECURITY SYSTEM
Italy has an extensive social security (previdenza sociale) system covering the vast majority of the population. Social insurance provides benefits for unemployment, sickness and maternity, accidents at work and occupational diseases, as well as old-age, invalidity and survivor’s pensions, and family allowances. It does not include the national health service (Servizio Sanitario Nazionale/SSN), which is funded from general taxation.
The system is run by a number of state agencies, which have been brought together under the National Institute for Social Security (Istituto Nazionale della Previdenza Sociale/INPS). All resident employees and self-employed workers pay social security contributions (contributi previdenziali), with a few exceptions.
Employee’s contributions are deducted at source from their gross salary by their employer, who pays around two-thirds of pension contributions, while the remaining third is paid by the employee. There are different contribution rates for employees in industry, commerce and agriculture, and for workers (operai), office staff (impiegati) and managers (dirigenti), who also receive different benefits.
The self-employed (lavoratori autonomi) must register and make contributions either to a separate organisation (called cassa), which is a social security fund allied to their profession, or directly with the INPS.
Self-employed people who make contributions to their own cassa include architects, accountants, lawyers, engineers, surveyors, medical specialists and other freelance professionals, who each have different rates of contributions.
The self-employed who make contributions to INPS may be part-time employees (collaboratori), such as university students, freelance workers (indipendenti), including small businessmen, shopkeepers, traders, tenant farmers, sharecroppers and smallholders, or employees of relatively new industries (e.g. computer consultancies) who do not have their own cassa yet.
Contributions are automatically credited for periods of unemployment where an employee has paid contributions for unemployment benefit (indennità di disoccupazione), for periods of military service, maternity leave, and illness of not less than a week and no longer than 12 months.
Maternity and paternity leave allowance
Female employees are entitled to mandatory paid leave for a period of two months prior to the expected date of delivery and three months following the expected date of childbirth. In addition, female employees may also take an optional additional six months following the expiration of the mandatory leave. Female employees are afforded extensive protection from discrimination following their return to work and are entitled to return to the same position or similar position at the same level within the company. The employee is also entitled to receive any benefit or raise issued by the company while on leave and, upon return from leave, the employee may not be fired if not for exceptional circumstances concerning misconduct, the expiration of a fixed-term contract, or closure of the business.
Both male and female employees are entitled to paternity leave governed by the Legislative Decree n.151 of 2001. The parent-employee may take parental leave in the amount of 10 months for each child, during the first 8 years of the child’s life. Throughout mandatory leave, the employee is entitled to receive a daily allowance of 80% of the salary amount. During optional leave, the employee is entitled to receive 30% of his or her normal salary amount.
Public healthcare in Italy
The national health service in Italy, Servizio Sanitario Nazionale (SSN), provides residents with free or low-cost healthcare that includes access to general practitioners (GPs), treatment at public hospitals, subsidised medicines, lab services, ambulance services and certain specialist care.
Patients who make social security contributions may have to make copayments, but most of a medical bill is paid by the government.
The SSN is a socialised system, however regional governments are in charge of managing it on a provincial level, meaning that there are differences between regions. Usually hospitals in northern and central Italy offer a higher standard than those in the south.
How to apply for Italian health insurance
Foreigners who are EU nationals can take advantage of reciprocal health agreements which makes access to public healthcare in Italy easy.
Non-EU expats will, however, need to formally register for the SSN. Expats who have their residence status finalised and have an Italian identity card (carta d’identità) can then apply for an Italian health insurance card (tessera sanitaria).
In order to get a health card an expat should go to the nearest local health authority (Azienda Sanità Locale/ASL) and provide various documents: residence permit, official identification and proof of employment.
Expats who want to claim benefits for their families will require a family status certificate (certificato di stato di famiglia).
After registering, applicants have to choose a family doctor and a paediatrician for their children. They are then issued with their health card, which must be presented in order to receive care under the SSN.
Private healthcare in Italy
Although public healthcare in Italy is free, foreigners may choose to use private healthcare.
There are a number of excellent specialist facilities and university hospitals in the large urban centres.
The official language in Italy is Italian, a Romance language, the closest to Latin in terms of vocabulary. It is also widely spoken in Switzerland, San Marino, Vatican City and Istria. The Italian language adopted by the state after the unification is based on Tuscan, which previously was a language spoken mostly by the upper class of Florentine society.
Throughout Italy, regional variations of Standard Italian, called Regional Italian, are influenced by various factors: the openness of vowels, the length of the consonants, and influence of the local dialects.
Italian is a major European language, being one of the official languages of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe and one of the working languages of the Council of Europe. Italian is the third most widely spoken first language in the European Union with 65 million native speakers (13% of the EU population) and it is spoken as a second language by 14 million EU citizens (3%).
Italian is the main working language of the Holy See, serving as the lingua franca in the Catholic hierarchy, as well as the official language of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta. Italian is known as the language of music because of its use in musical terminology and opera. Its influence is also widespread in the arts and in the luxury goods market. Italian has been reported as the fourth or fifth most frequently taught foreign language in the world.
As a member of the European Union, Italy is also part of the Economic and Monetary Union, which introduced the Euro as the common currency in 2002.
Nowadays these banknotes and coins are in circulation:
Italian euro coins have a design unique to each denomination, though there is a common theme of famous Italian works of art from Italy’s renowned artists. The 1 euro coin presents the Vitruvian man of Leonardo da Vinci. Leonardo’s work is highly symbolical as it represents the renaissance focus on man as the measure of all things, and has simultaneously a round shape that fits the coin perfectly.
Italian euro design
VISAS AND PERMITS
Anyone planning to stay in Italy for more than 90 days is considered a resident. Whether you are a student or seasonal worker, if your stay exceeds this period you must make sure you are in possession of the required documents since failing to acquire these can lead to expulsion from Italy.
Depending on the purpose of your trip to Italy, there are different types of visas that foreign visitors can apply for. Whether you are planning to go on a visit, study or work and reside in Italy on a permanent basis, you will have to apply for a different Italy Schengen Visa accordingly.
You can apply for an Italian Schengen Visa since October 1997 when Italy, as a Member State of the European Union also became a member state of the Schengen Area.
For more information about Schengen Visa types: http://www.schengenvisainfo.com/schengen-visa-types/
DECLARATION OF PRESENCE
As of 2007, the Italian residency permit has been replaced by a declaration of presence on Italian soil. A declaration of presence can be obtained by filling out a form at the police headquarters (Questura). You will receive a stamped receipt which should be kept safe in case you are asked to show proof of it in the future. If in possession of a short-stay visa (Uniform Schengen Visa) you do not need to make a declaration of presence. However, EU nationals and anyone else who does not possess the USV sticker on their passport and intends on staying for a period of more than three months must file for a declaration of presence in Italy.
TYPES OF PERMITS
Foreigners require different permits depending on their national status and on how long they have lived in Italy.
PERMIT TO STAY
In Italy, a permit to stay (permesso di soggiorno) can take up to more than three months to obtain and can be issued only for the purpose stated on the visa. There are several types of permits to stay, the most commonly issued ones are:
Other classes of permits to stay include refugees and employees on religious missions. If you are a non-EU citizen and have not obtained a specific visa, the local police headquarters normally would issue you a permit for tourism (permesso di soggiorno per turismo). This is non-renewable and valid for only three months. You cannot apply for residence with this permit, nor study, and you cannot take on employment or establish a business.
PERMANENT RESIDENCE CARDS
The EC residence permit for long-term residence (Permesso di Soggiorno per Soggiornanti di Lungo Periodo, SLP) was introduced in 2007 and, unlike the old residence permit, is now permanent. If you have been living in Italy continuously and legally for more than five years, then you are entitled to apply for an EC residence permit. EU citizens can and should apply for one if they intend on staying in the country for more than 90 days. Since the end of 2010, it is now necessary to pass an Italian language test in order to obtain the EC residence permit.
A GUIDE TO ITALIAN TAXES
The law provides for a system based on five taxes:
IMPOSTA SUL REDDITO DELLE PERSONE FISICHE (IRPEF)
It is an individual income tax. Tax rates are progressive and range from 23% to 43%. Additional taxes are due at the regional (0.9% to 1.4%) and local (0.1% to 0.8%) levels.
If you are a foreign resident working in Italy, you are only taxed on the income earned in Italy. However, if you are an Italian resident, spend more than 183 days a year in Italy, and your “center of economic interest” (i.e. your business and investments) is in Italy, your worldwide income is subject to IRPEF.
After allowances have been taken into account, rates are on a sliding scale. They are currently as follows:
IMPOSTA SUL REDDITO DELLE SOCIETÀ
It is a personal and proportional tax based on the corporate income. The percentage rate is currently 27,50%.
IMPOSTA SUL VALORE AGGIUNTO
It is an indirect tax burden on consumption. The percentage rates – 4%, 10%, 22% – vary according to the type of product.
IMPOSTA SUI SERVIZI (TASI)
It is a tax on public services provided by the local authorities such as rubbish collection, maintenance of streets and street lighting as well as public safety. It must be paid by owners and tenants of buildings, both dwellings and stores.
It is an indirect tax on the production and sale of certain categories of goods (for example fuel). It is applied on quantity and not on prices.