Digital nomad tax insights


The new visa for digital nomads might become a particularly interesting option for workers who may benefit from the so called “impatriate” tax regime following their relocation to Italy. The Decree of February 29, 2024, in force since April 5th, has established the entry and residence permit issuance procedures for "digital nomads" and "remote workers".

The provisions apply to non-EU citizens who perform highly skilled work using technological tools that allow remote work; more specifically this definition refers to self-employed foreign workers (digital nomads) or foreign employees of a company, even if not resident in Italy (remote workers).

Highly skilled work refers to work carried out by foreigners meeting the requirements under Article 27-quater, paragraph 1, of Legislative Decree 286/1998. In summary, workers must alternatively possess:

  1. A higher education degree issued by the competent foreign authority, certifying the completion of a post-secondary education or qualification course lasting at least three years;
  2. The requirements specified by Legislative Decree n° 206/2007 for regulated professions;
  3.  A higher professional qualification certified by at least five years of professional experience at a level comparable to tertiary level higher education degrees;
  4. A higher professional qualification certified by at least three years of relevant professional experience acquired in the seven years preceding the application for the "EU Blue Card" (limited to executives and specialists in the information and communication technology sector).

For non-EU individuals, it is important to assess whether, by working in Italy, they can benefit from the special tax regime for inpatriates, in its “new version” effective from January 1, 2024 (Article 5, Legislative Decree n° 209/2023). The new tax regime provides for a 50% tax exemption (which might be increased, under certain conditions up to 60%) applicable to employment income, assimilated to employment income and self-employment income, up to a maximum of Eur 600,000 annually. The benefit generally applies for five years (plus a further 3 years period whether certain requirements are met), starting from the first period when fiscal residence is transferred to Italy; the law also requires – inter alia - a commitment from workers to be tax resident in Italy for at least four years. Furthermore, under the “impatriate” regime, workers must possess qualifications of high expertise or specialization provided by specific Legislative Decrees, among which the Legislative Decree n° 206/2007 (see point b) above).

Consequently, meeting the requirements specified by the aforementioned Decree for regulated professions is, for example, a condition to access both to the visa for digital nomads and the described favourable tax regime.

It will be interesting to verify if and how all the various conditions for accessing to the the “visa regime” and the “tax impatriate regime” respectively - as well as their temporal validity (in fact, unlike the impatriate regime duration, residence permit for digital nomads can be issued for one year and is renewable annually), will be coordinated.