NOTARY FOR FOREIGNERS: ESSENTIAL RULES FOR REAL ESTATE PURCHASE

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In recent years an increasing number of foreigners is investing in Italian real estate. In order to draw up a notarial deed and to obtain the estate transfer, foreigners must show the notary the documentation required.

There are 3 groups of foreigners, in particular:
Foreigner without a regular residence permit, he/she can proceed with the act only if an international treaty allows it, or if there is the condition of reciprocity, that is if an Italian citizen can buy from his own native country.
Foreigner with a regular residence permit in Italy can complete the porchase porcess if he/she owns a long stay permit or a residence permit for specific reasons. the same way it works with an expired document, but at the condition that will be presented the notary the renewal's application, effected before the due date or within 60 days.

To EU citizens, there are no limits, he/she can draw up a notarial deed simply presenting identity document . Following the last enlargement occured in 2007, EU countries are : Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Holland, Denmark, Ireland, Great Britain, Cyprus, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovenia, Slovakia, Greece, Hungary, Spain, Austria, Portugal, Finland, Bulgaria, Romania, Sweden. It's important specify that the necessary requirements in order to take advantage of facilitations relative to the acquisition of the first house are the same of Italian citizens ones; therefore our country's law facilitations the acquisition of the "first house", lowering the registry tax till 2% on the land registry value, if the purchaser is a private person, and till 4% on the price if the purchaser is a company, plus the mortgage and cadastral taxes that, from 1st January 2014, amount to 50€ each if the acquisition is done between private person, while if is a real estate company that sell will be 3 % fixed taxes of 200€ each one.
A further tax facilitation concerns, to a certain extent, the allowance, from the income tax, of the interest corrisponded to the loan drawn up for the first house acquisition, but only changing the address to that residence.

Focusing on deed's drawing, in accordance with notarial law (Art. 54), the same must be written in Italian; that is to say that foreigners who can't speak Italian musn't draw up contracts, in our country, in the form of notarial act? Absolutely not. In fact, law provides that when the parties don't know Italian, notarial act can be written in a foreign language as well, (language that all the people taking part at the notary act ) as long as witnesses and notary know it. If instead notary does't know the foreign language, then the act must be done with the presence of an interpretor, who is able to read out partecipants the translation of the act prepared by the notary, and can guarantee that the same partecipants are able to understand content and legal consequences.

The public act written in Italian but that regards a conctract between persons who can't speak Italian, neither a language known by the notary, is invalid, that is it doesn't produce any of the interests expected by the parts (for example, it doesn't allow the acquisition of the house, the effective conclusion of the loan's conctract, it doesn't envolve an effective mortgage registration).
Another remarkable notarial act important for foreigners is called "PROCURA SPECIALE A VENDERE": with this act you can grant to a third your personal representation, when you will be not present at the act.
The simpliest operation is going to any notary of buyer's foreign country and subscribe the power of attorney, preferebly nominating a person who knows Italian. Afterwards the act will be translated in Italian and finally the competent judicial office will affix the legalization (must be verified which countries are exempt, like France).

LOAN'S CONTRACT WITH A BANK
On the foreign ministry's website is specified that mortgage loan acts don't require the condition of reciprocity, since they're connected to a purchase act and already subjected to some enquiries.

MODIFICATION OF THE LAND TENURE WITH ONE'S OWN SPOUSE
Land tenure determines spouses' rights on purchased goods during marriage, neither it goes on or it dissolves. In Italy spouses can choose between communion or separation of property, or "conventional communion" with peculiar rules. On the basis of section 30 of 218/95 law, also foreigners can choose, and is suitable decide carefully, being a very important decision that have influence on spouses. But let's briefly analyse communion and separation's system.
Communion of property: it's the system that Italian law ascribe automatically to the two spouses, but the married couple can choose the appropriate system for them. This system provides that all goods purchased during the union, also by only one of the two spouses, are property of both of them. So, in susbstance, in case of sale, donation, mortgage is necessary the consent of both of them. Goods of strictly personal or professional use and wages of own job are exempted from the system.
Separation of property: this implies that the spouses, in case of estate acquisition, do that, in fact, as they aren't married. Good is exclusively personal and the other spouse can't claim rights about it. It's important to specify that the 2 spouses can go halves purchasing a good, but when the share is transfered is not provided for the other's consent.

- GOOD'S DONATION
A foreigner can give as gift his/her own estate to who he/she considers to be appropriate.

- THE CONSTITUTION: MODIFICATION AND ALL THE ACTS RELATIVE TO A COMPANY
As already stated at the beginning, for a purchase of a real estate, a foreigner, with the same forms, can set up a company in Italy and form an association, having the forethought to remember that the case of reciprocity can sublist only for precise subjects. If in another country an Italian can set up a company but he/she can't purchase a real estate, the foreigner (without a regular residence permit in our country) that came from the same foreign country, can set up a company in Italy but he/she can't purchase a real estate.

- RECEPTION AND EMPLOYMENT OF FOREIGN ACTS

- MAKE ONE'S WILL
A foreigner can draw up a document where outlines to whom he leaves his own goods after his own death.

We have listed and explained only some of the most frequent acts that can be subscribed by a foreigner citizen, for any information don't hesitate and write us.

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