Opening a Self-Employed Business in Italy: Steps, Rules and Costs to Consider

Article published in the magazine We Wealth of March 31, 2023

If you are a non-resident individual interested in opening a self-employed business in Italy, you should consider a few things

If you are a non-resident individual interested in opening a self-employed business in Italy, you should consider a few things. First, you should know that the first step to gaining the status as a resident in Italy requires obtaining a residence permit (if you are not an EU citizen) and registering with the Registry Office of the municipality of residence. As a second step, the obtention of an Italian tax code is essential, as this will be necessary to open a Partita IVA, which is a fundamental to working as a self-employed worker in Italy. Opening a Partita IVA involves registering with the Business Register at the Chamber of Commerce, where it will be necessary to specify the activity you want to carry out. Different types of Partita IVA depend on the activity you want to perform, such as ordinary Partita IVA, facilitated Partita IVA, or forfeit Partita IVA.

Once the Partita IVA is opened, self-employed workers in Italy are subject to direct taxation, which means they pay taxes based on the income they earn. Additionally, if the activity involves selling goods or services, it is necessary to register as a VAT-liable entity and pay VAT on the products sold.

Self-employed workers in Italy are also required to pay social security contributions to INPS, which provide insurance coverage in case of illness, workplace accident, maternity, pension, and other situations. For 2023, the contribution rate is 25.72% for incomes up to 15,857.20 euros and 33% for incomes above this threshold.
Other things to consider before opening a self-employed business in Italy include registering with the Chamber of Commerce for certain commercial or artisanal activities or having specific certificates or authorizations for certain activities, such as providing food and beverages.

The costs for accounting and all tax compliance management for a self-employed worker usually range from 1,000.00 to 2,000.00 euros per year.