The holder of a study permit who obtains an Italian accredited degree can apply for conversion of the study permit into a permit for self-employment work (freelance) at any time of the year during the validity of the permit. The self-employment permit (permesso di soggiorno per lavoro autonomo) will allow the holder to remain in Italy after graduation and perform work as a freelancer. It can be renewed in-country as long as the holder meets the requirements. Permanent residency can be applied for after five years of continuous and legal residency in Italy, if meeting requirements such as minimum income, Italian language knowledge, absence of criminal records, etc.
How can I get Italian permanent residency as a freelancer?
I will graduate from an Italian college next spring. During my time here, I have been working as a freelance fashion designer for some small companies. As an international student I would like to be able to stay in Italy and work on my freelance job after graduation. Is it possible to get permanent residency as a freelancer? What is the process?
A non-EU national holding a student resident permit who attended a university in Italy and obtained a university degree may apply for the conversion of his/her study resident permit into a work permit for self-employment. The application shall be submitted while the student resident permit is still valid and the applicant shall demonstrate: to have obtained a university degree (laurea triennale - laurea magistrale - master - dottorato - diploma di specializzazione); to match the requirements for the exercise of the profession that he/she wants to carry out as a freelancer; to have have sufficient economic resources to finance his/her freelance activity in Italy; to have an annual income of at least approximately 8,500 euros; and the availability of suitable accommodations. The work permit for self-employment can have an initial duration of one year and it can be renewed should the conditions for its obtainment be maintained by the applicant. To get a resident permit for permanent residency in Italy - the so-called EU long-term residence permit - the non-EU national shall be residing for at least five consecutive years and then apply for it.