This GMS Flash Alert looks at the steps the Italian government is taking, though very gradual, to reopen the country, with some businesses allowed to reopen and some travel restrictions slightly eased. Furthermore, a new law will extend the validity of soon-to-expire resident and work permits through 31 August 2020.
Italy’s government published a Decree-Law containing some initial measures for a reopening of the country.1 The government has taken this step, as it grows cautiously optimistic about the gradual but steady improvement of the general situation related to the COVID-19 emergency in Italy.
Another law, just published, extends the validity of work permits and resident permits until 31 August 2020. 2
Reopening the country is an important matter for the Italian government, but this is being managed carefully so that allowed activities and new government policies enabling the reopening do not lead to a new outbreak of contagion. Although some forms of economic activity will be allowed and certain shops will be allowed to open, substantial restrictions on travel will remain in force, especially travel between Italy’s regions.
These are small first steps, as the situation, though improving, is tenuous still.
For organisations with globally-mobile employees, it is, at this point, a “wait and see” situation for the most part. This phase of the country’s reopening will have little impact on them. Indeed, until such time as the government decides it is safe to rescind or in a bigger way roll-back current restrictions, extensive remote working is a “best practice” for globally-mobile employees, to the extent possible, and is a way for employers to foster the safety of their employees and help ensure business continuity.
The anxieties of those individuals holding resident and work permits that are due to expire should be allayed by the government’s move to extend the validity of such resident permits and work permits, for many categories, up through 31 August 2020.
Generally speaking, the validity of existing resident permits, work permits, and related documents – implying the right to stay in Italy (which would have expired) – has been extended until 31 August 2020. This applies, amongst others, to work permits and resident permits issued for highly-specialised and highly-skilled workers (including also the EU Blue Card and ICT). Expiring family authorisations and resident permits for family reasons have been extended until 31 August 2020 as well.
The terms to apply for a work permit and for the conversion of resident permits for seasonal work and those from study to “subordinate work” are extended to 31 August 2020.
Processing activities related to pending applications for work permits and resident permits will depend both on national law that still encourages smart working and on the internal organisation of each authority involved.
(For related coverage, see GMS Flash Alert 2020-045, 4 March 2020.)
Any transit must fall within the definition of urgent trips.
1 Decreto del Presidente del Consiglio dei Ministri 26 aprile 2020.
2 Legge 24 aprile 2020, n. 27 Conversione in legge, con modificazioni, del decreto-legge 17 marzo 2020, n. 18.
* Please note that KPMG LLP (U.S.) does not offer immigration services or labour law services. However, KPMG Law LLP in Canada can assist clients with U.S. immigration matters.
The information contained in this newsletter was submitted by the KPMG International member firm in Italy.
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