What is the change? Italy’s labor and interior ministries have released a joint guidance urging local immigration offices throughout Italy to adopt a standard, unified list of documents for high-skilled workers work permit applications (applications that are quota exempt).

What does the change mean? Document requirements for high-skilled foreign nationals on temporary assignment, such as intracompany transfers, and for EU Blue Card applicants should become unified over time, and local immigration offices will have less discretion to impose differing requirements.

  • Implementation time frame: The circular was released Thursday. However, Italian local authorities are very slow to implement new regulations; therefore, immigration offices are not expected to apply the guidelines immediately.
  • Visas/permits affected: High-skilled, quota exempt work permits, EU Blue Cards.
  • Who is affected: High-skilled foreign workers on temporary assignment in Italy or hired on local contract.
  • Impact on processing times: The processes should gradually become more uniform and predictable across regional immigration offices.
  • Business impact: The guidance provides employers with clearer guidelines on document requirements when hiring or assigning high-skilled foreign nationals.

Background: According to the circular, companies should no longer be asked to submit Italian administrative documents that are already publicly available, such as company certificates. All other documents that are not public or issued abroad will still be required, and legalized or apostilled and translated.

BAL Analysis: The joint circular was issued with the aim of simplifying procedures and cutting red tape for high-skilled workers applying for work permits. The guidance follows last month’s proposal by the European Commission to revamp the EU Blue Card to make it a more flexible and attractive route for non-EU nationals to work and move within Europe.

This alert has been provided by the BAL Global Practice group and our network provider located in Italy. For additional information, please contact your BAL attorney.

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