May 29, 2022

Italy Startup Visa

Italy has implemented a ground-breaking Startup law since 2012 to encourage the creation and development of innovative startups. The aim is to foster technological development and employment, especially for young people, by attracting innovative entrepreneurs from all over the world. Let’s discuss Italy Startup Visa.

Within this initiative the Italia Startup Visa program is designed to help achieve these objectives by offering a simplified and fast visa procedure (visa obtained within 30 days) for innovative entrepreneurs who wants to set-up an innovative startup in Italy. This opportunity is available also for non-EU citizens who are already living in Italy with a regular residence permit and who would like to remain in Italy to set-up an innovative start-up. They will therefore be able to convert their residence permit in a new one for self-employment without having to leave Italy.

At the end of 2020, according to a report by InfoCamere, there were 12,068 innovative startups in Italy, an increase of 572 units compared to the last quarter (+ 5% during the quarter).

The growing success of this type of business has been enhanced by recent Italian economic policies aimed at supporting the creation and development of innovative business in the country, such as Smart & Start, Equity Crowdfunding, and investment detraction. These have made Italy a desirable and safe place to establish an innovative startup.

If you are from a non-EU country and wish to create your own innovative startup, the Italy Startup Visa is an opportunity that you should not miss.

The Italy Startup Visa is an Italian government tool designed to attract innovative business owners and highly qualified workers to Italy.

It introduces a bilingual, digital, centralized and accelerated procedure to facilitate granting of entrance visas for talented business owners who want to base their innovative business in Italy.

What are the Requirements for Italy Startup Visa?

Among the requirements for obtaining the Italy Startup Visa, foreign entrepreneurs must prove they have no less than €50,000 in available financial resources, obtained through venture capital funding or other investors, portals for the collection of capital for innovative startups, Italian or foreign government and non-government funding or a combination of any of the aforementioned.

Special facilitation is possible for foreign citizens that have secured the support of a certified incubator. With the implementation of these new provisions, Italy joins a limited number of countries offering a startup visa specifically dedicated to startup businesses (others include Canada, Ireland, Finland, UK, France and the Netherlands).

Also, applications shall provide evidence that:

  • They have suitable accommodation, in accordance with Article 26 of Presidential Decree 445 of 2000 (including the form of a hotel booking or an offer of accommodation from a third party);
  • Income earned during the previous financial year in their country of residence (i.e. income tax return) is higher than the minimum level envisaged by Italian law on exemption from co-payment of health costs (8,400 euros).

Validity of the Residence Permit Given Under Italy Startup Visa

  • The first residence permit has a validity of 1 year, renewable. The residence permit is renewable under the same substantive conditions for the issuance of the first one, as long as the foreign national is never absent from the Italian territory for longer than 6 continuous months.
  • The applicant can renew the residence permit on their own or be assisted by us.
  • After 5 years of continuous registered legal residency in Italy, the applicant would be eligible to apply for a permanent residence permit.

Time Frame for the Processing of Italy Startup Visa

  • The expected time frame to obtain the Italy Startup visa is approximately 2 months from the application. Once the applicant obtains the visa, they can travel to Italy, apply for the residence permit and reside there legally.

Compared to the usual procedure for obtaining the autonomous work visa, the Startup Visa request is simplified, accelerated and totally digitalized, with rapid concession of the Nulla Osta (declaration of no impediment).

There are three steps to obtain the visa:

  1. Submitting the application
  2. Accelerated evaluation of the request and release of the Nulla Osta
  3. Granting of the visa and entry into Italy

Submitting the Application for Italy Startup Visa

The application to the Italia Startup Visa program should be sent by email to the address indicated by the MISE. To be complete and pass the formal controls of the Secretariat, the application should consist in three required parts:

  • The application form, which besides showing the personal data and curriculum of the person making the request, should furnish detailed information about the innovative startup project that the applicant intends to set up.
  • Certification of availability of financial resources of at least 50,000 euros, along with a letter attesting that the sum will be used for the establishment and functioning of the innovative startup.
  • Copy of valid passport, so that the police headquarters of the place where the applicant intends to live can carry out a preliminary examination.

In the case of an applicant who has received assistance by a Certified Incubator, on the other hand, it is enough to present documentation attesting the availability of financial resources and signed testimony by the legal representative of the Incubator certifying their availability to assist the non-EU citizen in setting up the innovative startup.

Accelerated Evaluation of the Request and Release of the Nulla Osta

Once the Italia Visa Startup Committee expresses itself in favor of the innovative business project that has been presented, the Nulla Osta is released within 30 days of the date when the request was presented.

The Nulla Osta can be used for granting the visa for autonomous work, within 3 months of the date of its emission.

Granting of the Visa and Entrance into Italy

 To pick up the visa, the applicant must appear personally at the competent Embassy or Consulate in their country of residence, presenting, besides the Nulla Osta and the originals of all documentation already sent to the Committee, all the further administrative documents required.

Once the diplomatic/consular office has received the request and the documentation, after carrying out the controls under its authority, it grants the visa for autonomous startup workers, with annual duration, impacting the quotas established by the Flow Decree for the year of reference.

Once the non-EU citizen has received the visa, he/she has 6 months to move to Italy, and within 8 days of their entrance, to request a one-year permit to stay from his/her local police headquarters, presenting the necessary administrative documentation.

Duration of the Visa 5 Years

The permit to stay for autonomous startup worker has an annual duration. Up to 60 days before its expiration, the permit can be renewed for 2 years, and is again renewable, at expiration, for a maximum of 2 more years.

After 5 years the non-EU citizen can apply for a long stay permit, valid for an unlimited time period.

For the renewal procedure, the applicant must present the innovative startup visura (certification) and demonstrate earnings superior to the minimum required by law.

How Visa Ray Can Help You?

 Visa Ray, has associations and collaboration with legal offices specialized in such matters. We are ready to help you file the application for the Italy Startup Visa:

  • We help you in the presentation of your business model and business plan, with particular attention to research and development activities.
  • We send all the documentation needed to obtain a Nulla Osta for the visa on your behalf.
  • After that we help you in all the successive procedures for obtaining the visa.

If you are interested in the Italy Startup Visa and want us to help you then please fill up the form below so that we can get in touch with you and help you.

  • eg. +44-1234567890
  • Sorry for asking, but we have to know if you can sustain yourself in Canada. or the country you are applying for.

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