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Setting up as a freelancer in Italy
Thread poster: George Young

NinaBullard  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 08:44
Italian to English
+ ...
Better Late Than Never Feb 18, 2015

Tom in London wrote:

Remember that social security in the UK is provided free but to residents only; and in Italy it's provided to those who contribute to the system.


The whole idea of the European Union, which oddly enough, many people don't seem to understand, is that anyone living in any member state has the same entitlement to everything as anyone living in any other member state.

Your neighbour is not "freeloading"- he or she is exercising his right as a citizen of the European Union.

However generally speaking, it seems that George has a lot more to learn than can be explained by us here. He has a lot of finding out to do. I just hope we have been able to warn him about what he about to walk into. Actually living and working in Italy involves a lot more than just walking around art galleries and eating pizza.

[Edited at 2015-02-18 17:12 GMT] [/quote]


Tom, as an native Italian who lived and worked in Italy for many years, I agree with much of what you say about the Italian tax codes and the Kafkian Public Administration system; however, I am happy to note that you survived the ordeal for 20 years! (Smiling here, no sarcasm intended). My point is that there is always a steep learning curve when relocating to a different country and that a well-informed person, who has the necessary motivation and the right attitude, can manage to survive quite well anywhere.


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:44
Member (2008)
Italian to English
Thanks Nina Feb 19, 2015

NinaBullard wrot


Tom, as an native Italian who lived and worked in Italy for many years, I agree with much of what you say about the Italian tax codes and the Kafkian Public Administration system; however, I am happy to note that you survived the ordeal for 20 years! (Smiling here, no sarcasm intended). My point is that there is always a steep learning curve when relocating to a different country and that a well-informed person, who has the necessary motivation and the right attitude, can manage to survive quite well anywhere.


I gave up after 23 years. It didn't get any better (although after 23 years of living there I think I know Italy pretty well)


 

Angie Garbarino  Identity Verified
Member (2003)
French to Italian
+ ...
@Tom Feb 19, 2015

Tom in London wrote:
It isn't the amount that's the problem. And of course marriages can break up for all kinds of reasons. But one should not assume that they will. Anyone who hasn't actually lived and worked in Italy really has no idea. You just would not believe it.

[Edited at 2015-02-18 12:17 GMT]



You are absolutely right and I quote everything, and I also realized that people living in other countries cannot undestand the real hell in Italy nowadays.


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:44
Member (2008)
Italian to English
But why did I stay? Feb 19, 2015

Angie Garbarino wrote:

Tom in London wrote:
It isn't the amount that's the problem. And of course marriages can break up for all kinds of reasons. But one should not assume that they will. Anyone who hasn't actually lived and worked in Italy really has no idea. You just would not believe it.

[Edited at 2015-02-18 12:17 GMT]



You are absolutely right and I quote everything, and I also realized that people living in other countries cannot undestand the real hell in Italy nowadays.




But why did I stay? I don't know. After I had been there for 2 or 3 years an Italian asked me "What do you like best about Italy?" and spontaneously I said "the humanity".

Maybe that's why. Every time I'm about to leave here for a trip to Italy, I'm happy.

But I'm keeping my tax domicile here !



[Edited at 2015-02-19 10:23 GMT]


 

Michael Wetzel  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 14:44
German to English
LLC? Feb 19, 2015

Theoretically, I think you could just found an LLC in the UK; if you are no longer a sole trader, I don't think it matters where you are a resident.
You would pay Italian income tax, because you would be a resident there, but every other aspect of taxation and business administration would be handled through the UK.

Apparently it is incredibly cheap to set up a (cheap) LLC:
...
See more
Theoretically, I think you could just found an LLC in the UK; if you are no longer a sole trader, I don't think it matters where you are a resident.
You would pay Italian income tax, because you would be a resident there, but every other aspect of taxation and business administration would be handled through the UK.

Apparently it is incredibly cheap to set up a (cheap) LLC:
http://www.companybug.com/how-much-does-a-limited-company-cost/

That said, the red tape, costs and uncertainty involved in this arrangement may be more troublesome than the situation in Italy ... At any rate, it clearly seems to offer a potential solution to your issue.
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Jennifer Forbes  Identity Verified
Local time: 13:44
Member (2006)
French to English
+ ...
Advice ... Feb 19, 2015

George asked for advice from translators with experience on the subject about taxation and other possible difficulties if he were to move to Italy. He has received a substantial amount of advice and information but doesn't seem very happy with it.

When people ask for advice, they have quite often already decided in their hearts and minds that they want to do whatever it is and are hoping to receive advice which confirms their feelings or wishes. When that advice isn't what they want
... See more
George asked for advice from translators with experience on the subject about taxation and other possible difficulties if he were to move to Italy. He has received a substantial amount of advice and information but doesn't seem very happy with it.

When people ask for advice, they have quite often already decided in their hearts and minds that they want to do whatever it is and are hoping to receive advice which confirms their feelings or wishes. When that advice isn't what they wanted to hear, they are upset.

I know because I've done the same thing myself (in a totally different situation). I knew what I wanted to hear but I also knew that my advisers were right to tell me not to do it. I was disappointed but I ultimately accepted it. Hard to swallow sometimes.

Best of luck, George, whatever you decide.
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George Young  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 14:44
Member (2012)
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Jenny Feb 19, 2015

Jenny, thanks for your input.

The fact is that I intend to move to Italy, regardless of the horror stories being supplied on this thread because of family circumstances. So it's not so much the case of not liking the advice, it's more that saying "don't go" isn't really an option. It's more a case of "playing the cards you're dealt".

I'll have a look at Michael's link below, that sounds like a promising work-around.


 

Giovanni Guarnieri MITI, MIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:44
Member (2004)
English to Italian
yes... Feb 19, 2015

you are right there... if don't have any other options, then it is a bit silly to tell you not to do it...

It is a bit of a fiscal and administrative nightmare, but then the life style is much much better...


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:44
Member (2008)
Italian to English
Georgeo Feb 19, 2015

George Young wrote:

Jenny, thanks for your input.

The fact is that I intend to move to Italy, regardless of the horror stories being supplied on this thread because of family circumstances. So it's not so much the case of not liking the advice, it's more that saying "don't go" isn't really an option. It's more a case of "playing the cards you're dealt".

I'll have a look at Michael's link below, that sounds like a promising work-around.


George - come back to this thread in 6 months' time and let us know how you're getting on.....


 

Angie Garbarino  Identity Verified
Member (2003)
French to Italian
+ ...
Sorry Feb 19, 2015

We just tell you the truth.

If you have already decided, search for a very very good "commercialista" able to provide strong accounting assistance.


 

George Young  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 14:44
Member (2012)
French to English
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Giovanni Feb 20, 2015

Giovanni Guarnieri MITI, MIL wrote:

you are right there... if don't have any other options, then it is a bit silly to tell you not to do it...

It is a bit of a fiscal and administrative nightmare, but then the life style is much much better...


The whole point of this thread was to gather some more information to go in "occhi aperti". I certainly feel forewarned and the other thread on the Italian language forum certainly demonstrates the lack of clarity in the system.

Angie - I've already started on that search, thanks for your advice!


 

Lori Cirefice  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 14:44
French to English
A thought on the 183 days issue Feb 20, 2015

Not sure when you plan to move to Italy, but if it's "later this year", perhaps for your first "fiscal year" in Italy you would be there for less than 183 days, so you could keep your fiscal residence in the UK for the entire year 2015, which would give you time to further investigate the Italian system and be fully prepared for the switch to make Italy your fiscal residence in Jan 2016? Not sure how feasible that would be as it sounds like your wife might have an "employee" status in Italy, whi... See more
Not sure when you plan to move to Italy, but if it's "later this year", perhaps for your first "fiscal year" in Italy you would be there for less than 183 days, so you could keep your fiscal residence in the UK for the entire year 2015, which would give you time to further investigate the Italian system and be fully prepared for the switch to make Italy your fiscal residence in Jan 2016? Not sure how feasible that would be as it sounds like your wife might have an "employee" status in Italy, which would mean that she would have to file an Italian tax return... if you are filing together my idea might not work!Collapse


 

Tom in London
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:44
Member (2008)
Italian to English
Be careful about it Feb 20, 2015

Be careful about this, because your accountant will come to know you more intimately than your wife! She or he will have all your documents and will ask you all kinds of questions about what you are doing. She or he will know exactly how much you are earning, whether your income is increasing or decreasing, and how you're feeling about life generally. Once you get into this relationship, with all of your very important documents held not by you but by the accountant at her/his office, it would ... See more
Be careful about this, because your accountant will come to know you more intimately than your wife! She or he will have all your documents and will ask you all kinds of questions about what you are doing. She or he will know exactly how much you are earning, whether your income is increasing or decreasing, and how you're feeling about life generally. Once you get into this relationship, with all of your very important documents held not by you but by the accountant at her/his office, it would be very difficult indeed to get out of it, if for any reason you became dissatisfied with it.

So don't make the mistake that I made many years ago when I urgently needed an accountant and asked an Italian work colleague, who recommended one to me:

Never having had an accountant before, I didn't know what the arrangement should be. This particular accountant said he would be charging me for his services on the basis of how much I was earning. In other words, the more money I made the more he took even though the amount of work he was doing was exactly the same. Deeply iniquitous but impossible to get out of!

What's more, every time I had a query about anything he insisted that I come into his office personally, which involved a very complicated drive across the Florence traffic. On each of these occasions at least half a day would be wasted.

When I got there, he would keep me waiting for a while and I would then be seen into his office, where we would both sit down and have an apparently freewheeling pleasant conversation about this and that, as though neither of us had anything else urgent to do.

These conversations were actually his way of disarming me by sounding me out, and finding out a lot of information about me - finding out which aspects of this he could exploit for his own personal advantage.

These pleasant conversations led to him asking me for all kinds of favours I could not refuse, and which entailed all kinds of time-consuming and very embarrassing work for myself.

One particularly awkward example was when he asked me to find an internship in London for his son. You can't imagine what that led to and and how much more of my time was wasted.

Beware of Italians who want their offspring to learn English!

Caveat emptor !!! Don't get too friendly. I hate to say this but everyone you meet in Italy will take you by the arm and describe all kinds of wonderful things you could do together. Don't be charmed.

One of these days I may write a book about this. Books about how to live in Italy, for anglophones, seem to sell well.....

[Edited at 2015-02-20 11:38 GMT]
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Giovanni Guarnieri MITI, MIL  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 13:44
Member (2004)
English to Italian
Tom... Feb 20, 2015

I'm surprised you lasted that long... )

 

Angie Garbarino  Identity Verified
Member (2003)
French to Italian
+ ...
Well no... Feb 22, 2015

Tom in London wrote:

I hate to say this but everyone you meet in Italy will take you by the arm and describe all kinds of wonderful things you could do together. Don't be charmed.
..

[Edited at 2015-02-20 11:38 GMT]


There also many honest people in Italy,I cannot accept this statement, as long as we discuss the fiscal system and other political related issues, ok.. but now no, you are showing discrimination about nationality now.

NO... NO... and NO



[Edited at 2015-02-22 13:36 GMT]


 
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