Family allowances are a financial benefit aimed at supporting the families of certain categories of Italian, EU and foreign workers who work in Italy and have a total family income below the thresholds established annually by law.
Family allowance is aimed at:
- independent farmers, tenant farmers and sharecroppers;
- small independent farmers;
- individuals enrolled on the special pension schemes for self-employed workers (artisans, traders, independent farmers, tenant farmers and sharecroppers).
What am I entitled to?
Family allowances are paid directly by the INPS and can be claimed by each living dependent family member.
A living dependent family member is someone who has a personal income that does not exceed a certain monthly amount that is established by law and re-evaluated annually.
Every year the INPS publishes the income thresholds (for both the family unit and for beneficiaries) for entitlement to the family allowances in a circular (circolare INPS 09 gennaio 2020, n. 3). If the first income bracket is exceeded, the payment of family allowances will be reduced; if the second income bracket is also exceeded, the payment of the family allowances will stop.
The allowance is equal to:
- €8.18 per month for independent farmers, tenant farmers, sharecroppers and for children and equivalents;
- €10.21 per month for pension holders enrolled on the special scheme for self-employed workers, for small independent farmers, for the spouse/partner of a civil union, children and equivalents;
- €1.21 per month for small independent farmers, parents and equivalents.
If the claim is submitted after the applicant becomes entitled to the allowance, the due arrears are paid for a maximum period of the previous five years (five-year limitation period).
The family members for whom allowances may be claimed are:
- the spouse/partner of a civil union, even if the couple is legally separated/has dissolved their civil union, provided that he/she is financially dependent, and only if the applicant is enrolled on the special pension scheme for self-employed workers;
- children or equivalents, even if non-cohabiting minors, apprentices or students at a secondary school (up to 21 years) or university (up to 26 years and within the legal limit of the degree course), family members who are disabled and unable to work (no age limit);
- siblings and cohabiting minor grandchildren, cohabiting apprentices or students at a secondary school (up to 21 years) or university (up to 26 years and within the legal limit of the degree course), family members who are disabled and unable to work (no age limit);
- relatives in the ascending line (parents, grandparents, etc.) and similar, only if the applicant is a small independent farmer;
- relatives of foreign citizens residing in countries with which an international agreement for family benefits is in place.
The spouse/civil partner of the person entitled to the Family Allowance may claim payment of the benefit as long as they do not have their own right to the Family Allowance.
The income to be declared when applying for the allowance is that which is subject to IRPEF (personal income tax) gross of tax deductions, deductible expenses and revenue withholding taxes. Income that is exempt from tax or subject to source withholding tax by way of tax or substitute tax must also be declared if it exceeds a total of €1,032.91 and was produced in the calendar year before 1st July of each year and are valid until 30th June of the following year.
Therefore, if the claim for Family Allowances concerns periods included in the first half of the year, namely from January to June, the income to be declared should be that earned two years previously. Whereas, if the periods involve the second half of the year, namely from July to December, the income to be declared is that earned in the year immediately prior.
If the income of the family unit and/or the dependent relatives changes, new income forms must be submitted.
How can I claim?
The claim to the INPS can be submitted on-line using the dedicated 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 and intermediaries thereof.