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  • Gianpiero Fresu

Investor Visa for Italy


The Italian Golden Visa - A Path to Residency and Prosperity

Italy, with its rich cultural heritage, picturesque landscapes, and delectable cuisine, has long been a dream destination for many, with major cities including Milan, Rome, and Florence. In recent years, the country has not only attracted tourists but also non-EU investors seeking a pathway to European residency. The Italy Golden Visa, also known as the “Investor Visa for Italy,” was introduced in 2017 by the Italian government to promote foreign direct investment. There are several investment options and successful applicants gain residence rights within three to four months.

The program grants a residence permit that is valid for five years (2+3). To obtain the visa under the Investor Visa Program, investors must purchase or rent residential real estate in Italy. Permanent residence is possible after five years, provided the investor has relocated to Italy. There is no minimum number of days of mandatory physical presence.

Who can apply for an investor visa? 

• an individual (i.e. natural person) over eighteen years of age;

• a foreign legal entity.

Qualifying Investments:

To be eligible for the Italian Golden Visa, investors can choose from various investment options. The most common pathways include:


  • Italian Government Bonds: purchase government bonds worth at least €2 million.


  • Investment in an Innovative Start-up: an investor can invest in stakes or shares of one of the innovative startups which were approved by Italian authorities, for at least 250.000€.


  • Business Investment: invest at least 500.000€ in listed or unlisted shares in a company that is incorporated and operates in Italy. The company is considered operating if it is in an active state and has already filed at least one balance sheet by the date of the investors application. 


  • Philanthropic Donations: invest 1.000.000€ in a project of public interest operating in the field of culture, education, immigration management, scientific research, and preservation of cultural and natural heritage. 

Benefits of the Italian Golden Visa:

  • Residency Privileges: the Italian Golden Visa grants residency to the investor and their family members, including spouses, children, and dependent parents.


  • Ease of Travel: Visa-free travel within the Schengen Area for short stays (up to 90 days within a 180-day period).


  • Path to Citizenship: the Italian Golden Visa doesn't automatically lead to citizenship, it can though be a stepping stone. Investors can apply for permanent residency after five years and citizenship after ten years of legal residence.


  • Special Tax Regime: the 2017 Budget Law contains several other incentive measures, mainly of fiscal nature, specifically designed for individuals who intend to transfer their residence to Italy. For example, an investor visa holder can opt for the special tax regime for new residents.  Pursuant to the new art. 24-bis of the Consolidated Act on Income Taxes (“TUIR”, Presidential Decree 917/1986), individuals who transfer their tax residence to Italy may opt to pay an annual substitute tax of € 100,000 on income produced abroad, provided that they have not been tax-resident in Italy for at least nine years over the previous ten. This option can be extended to family members, by paying a further annual substitute tax of € 25,000 per family member. The scheme has a maximum duration of 15 years.

Application Process

The application process for the Italian Golden Visa involves several steps, including the submission of required documents, verification of the investment, and obtaining the residence permit. It's crucial for investors to work with legal and financial advisors as well as certified real estate brokers to navigate the complexities of the application process successfully. Our group provides experienced lawyers specialised in the Golden Visa Application and real estate professionals who can guide you through the entire process.



In conclusion, the Italian Golden Visa program presents a golden opportunity for investors seeking a blend of cultural richness, economic prospects, and European residency. It carries important advantages from a special substitute fixed tax regime on income produced abroad as well as the possibility to enter in the Schengen area.  As Italy opens its doors to investors from around the world, the program serves as a testament to the country's commitment fostering economic growth. For those with a penchant for la dolce vita, the Italian Golden Visa is more than a residency program, it is a gateway to a life enriched by the beauty, history, and opportunities that Italy has to offer

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