The Family Allowance (ANF) is a form of financial support granted by the INPS for family units containing certain categories of employees, pension holders, beneficiaries of social security benefits from employers and employees insured against tuberculosis.
Eligibility and the calculation of the allowance amount take into account the type of family unit, the number of members and the total family income. The allowance amount decreases as income brackets increase and cannot be claimed at various cut-off thresholds depending on the type of family unit.
More advantageous allowance amounts and income brackets are envisaged for certain types of households (for example, single parent families or families with disabled members).
The amounts are displayed annually in tables published by the INPS and come into effect on 01 July of each year until 30 June of the following year (INPS Circular no. 66 of 11 May 2019).
Family Allowance granted by the INPS is aimed at:
- Private sector employees;
- Agricultural employees;
- Domestic workers and contract workers;
- Workers enrolled in the Separate Pension scheme;
- Employees of failed or discontinued companies;
- Holders of pensions from the Dependent Workers’ Pension Fund or pensions from special funds from the ex-ENPALS (Italian National Welfare and Assistance Institute for Artists);
- Recipients of social security benefits;
- Workers in other direct payment situations.
START DATE AND DURATION
The entitlement start date will begin on the first day of the payment period or social security benefits period, during which the conditions required to be eligible for this allowance are met (for example marriage, birth of a child). Benefits will be withdrawn at the end of the period in progress or on the date at which the conditions are no longer met (for example legal separation or when the child reaches the age of majority).
A daily allowance will be allocated, with the entitlement period starting on the day on which the stipulated conditions are met and finishing on the day on which these conditions are no longer met.
There can be no more than six daily allowance payments made each week and no more than 26 per month.
For payments subject to authorisation by the INPS, the start and end dates of the allowance are indicated in the authorisation.
If the claim is made for one or more consecutive periods, the due arrears can be paid out within five years, in accordance with the five-year limitation period.
WHAT AM I ENTITLED TO?
The benefit amount is calculated based on the type of family unit, the number of members and on the total income of the family unit.
The income of the family unit being considered is subject to IRPEF (personal income tax), gross of tax deductions, deductible expenses and withholding taxes. Income in excess of €1,032.91 that is exempt from tax or subject to substitute tax or withholding tax by way of a fee should also be indicated.
Income generated in the calendar year prior to 1st July of each year and which will be applicable until 30th June of the following year must also be taken into account. Therefore, if the family allowance claim concerns the first half of the year, namely, from January until June, the income earned two years earlier must be declared. On the other hand, if the claim period concerns the second half of the year, from July until December, the previous year’s income must be declared.
The reference income in the case of de facto cohabitation, referred to in Article 1, paragraphs 36 and 37 of Law no. 76 of 20 May 2016, which stipulate the cohabiting agreement under Article 1, paragraph 50, Law 76/2016 must be indicated in accordance with the aforementioned law (INPS circular no. 84 of 05 May 2017).
The following must not be declared as income:
- severance indemnity (TFR), however described, and advanced payments thereof;
- family benefits, however described, due by law;
- annuities awarded by the INAIL (Italian National Institute for Insurance against Accidents at Work), war pensions and pensions for soldiers who have suffered injury;
- attendance allowance for disabled citizens, for completely blind citizens, for disabled minors who are unable to walk and for disabled pensioners, sums received by way of care allowance in accordance with the provincial law of Bolzano no. 9 of 12 October 2007;
- attendance allowance for deaf people and special allowances for the partially blind;
- allowances for irreversible damage caused by obligatory vaccinations, blood transfusions and the administrations of blood derivatives;
- arrears of the wage guarantee fund declared in the years preceding the distribution;
- travel allowance for parts not subject to taxation;
- maintenance contributions received by the legally separated spouse that are borne by the applicant and intended for the care of the children.
At least 70% of the total family income must be earned from paid or assimilated employment.
The allowance is paid to the working employees by the employer on behalf of the INPS at the time of salary payment.
The Family Allowance is paid directly by the INPS if the applicant is:
- A domestic service worker;
- Enrolled in the Separate Pension scheme;
- A fixed-term agricultural employee;
- An employee of a failed or discontinued company;
- A beneficiary of other social security benefits.
The INPS makes the payment by bank transfer at a post office or by crediting to a bank or post office account, indicating the IBAN code in their claim. The SR163 Form must be filled in as an attachment to the claim and stamped by the Bank or the Post Office.
WITHDRAWAL OF BENEFIT
The right to family allowance expires on the date at which the required eligibility conditions are no longer met: for example, in the case of legal separation of a married couple/members of a civil union that was terminated by the ex-spouse/partner of the civil union. However, the right will remain valid for eligible children or for children who are completely and permanently unable to work when they reach the age of majority.
Family allowance is aimed at family units that can consist of:
- A working claimant or pension holder;
- A spouse/partner of a civil union that is not legally and fully separated or has not dissolved the civil union, even if the members do not live together, or if the family has not been abandoned by one of the spouses/partners;
- Children and equivalents younger than 18 years of age, whether cohabiting or not;
- Children and equivalents of age with complete and permanent inability to work provided that they are not married and subject to authorisation;
- Children and equivalents, students or apprentices older than 18 years of age and less than 21 years of age, provided that they are part of a ‘large family’, namely, a family with at least four children younger than 26 years old (subject to authorisation);
- Siblings and grandchildren of the claimant (collateral or lineal relatives regardless of the ascendant), minors or adults, disabled persons unable to work, only if they are a double orphan, do not have the right to the survivor's pension and are not married (subject to authorisation);
- Grandchildren of lineal descent and younger than 18 years of age if dependent on their ascendant (subject to authorisation).
Foreigners living in Italy that are polygamous in their country of origin may include only their first wife and any children had with her in their family unit, and only if they live in Italy.
Non-EU workers (excluding those with a seasonal contract) only have the right to the family allowance for family members residing in Italy, unless the worker’s country of origin has entered into an agreement with Italy regarding family entitlements, or where community social security legislation can be applied.
Foreign workers seeking political refuge also have the right to allowances, including for relatives living abroad, as a result of achieving equality with Italian citizens.
For holders of a survivor's pension, the household has the right to Family Allowance if it contains the surviving spouse/civil union partner who is entitled to the pension and if it includes children or equivalents who are holders or co-holders of the pension or disabled adults unable to work. The family unit can also consist of a single person if concerning an orphan who is disabled and unable to work and if they hold the survivor's pension of a minor or adult employee.
The spouse/civil union partner entitled to Family Allowance payments can claim payments of the allowance provided that they are not entitled to their own Family Allowance determined by employment or by a social security benefit derived from employment. The payment claim from the spouse/civil partner must be claimed using the ANF 559 form (Code SR56).
For family units containing separated/divorced parents or parents who have dissolved their civil partnership and who have shared custody of their children, the right to the ANF applies to both parents and the decision regarding which parent can claim the allowance must be decided between them. If an agreement cannot be reached, allowance authorisation is granted to the parent who lives with the children.
The right remains with the parent who has actual care of the children even if he or she is not the holder of the right to claim the Family Allowance (since not working or not a pension holder). This right is exercised under the safeguarded position of the former spouse/partner of the civil union, provided that the de facto requirements, namely the household income of the parent who cares for the children, permit the right to the Family Allowance.
A parent living with a minor (without autonomous right) who was born outside of marriage/civil union may claim the Family Allowance payment based on the status of the other employed parent who does not live with them. The payment takes into account the income of the cohabiting parent.
When can I claim?
The claim must be submitted for each year that you are entitled to the allowance.
Any changes to income and/or to the family configuration during the Family Allowance claim period must be declared with 30 days.
A modification claim must also be submitted in the case of re-employment with another employer.
How can I claim?
Claim procedure for employees of companies in the non-agricultural private sector
As of 01 April 2019, claims for the Family Allowance for private-sector employees of non-agricultural businesses must be submitted directly to the INPS in electronic format only.
Claims for the Family Allowance must be submitted by the employee to the INPS via the dedicated on-line service or by using the digital services offered by patronage institutions.
In the cases provided for by current regulations, the Family Allowance Authorisation claim must also be forwarded to the Institute.
Claim procedure for employees of companies in the agricultural private sector
Claims for the Family Allowance by permanent (OTI) agricultural sector employees must be submitted to their employer using the paper ANF/DIP form (SR16). For cases provided for by current regulations, the Family Allowance Authorisation (ANF43) issued by the Institute must be attached to the form.
Claim procedure for employees of discontinued or bankrupt companies
In the event of a Family Allowance claim by workers of discontinued or bankrupt companies, the Family Allowance is paid directly by the Institute.
The relevant digital claim (see INPS circular no. 136 of 30 October 2014) must be submitted to the Institute within the five-year limitation period by using the dedicated online service.
Alternatively, claims can be made by:
- Telephoning the contact centre on +39 803 164 (free from Italian landlines) or +39 06 164 164 from mobile phones;
- Electronic services offered by patronage institutes.
Claim for Family Allowance Authorisation
The claim for Family Allowance authorisation must be submitted electronically, accompanied by the required documentation, in the following cases:
- if the inclusion of certain family members within the family unit is requested (brothers, sisters, children of separated or divorced parents or parents with dissolved civil partnerships, natural children, family members residing abroad, etc.);
- in cases of possible duplication of payment (children of separated/divorced parents or parents with a dissolved civil partnership, natural children, etc.);
- to apply for the increase in income levels (for minor family members with difficulties carrying out normal tasks for their age or for adults who are completely and permanently unable to work).