“As is well known [sic], art. 1 of Decree of the Crown no. 246/1938 provides that “Anyone holding one or more of the following items of equipment which are suitable or can be adaptable to the reception of “radioaudizioni” (intepreted as TV radio signals) must pay the licence fee, in accordance with the rules set out in the decree. The presence of aerial equipment capable of capturing or transmitting electrical waves or a suitable device replacing the aerial installation, i.e. internal lines for the operation of radioelectric devices, gives rise to the presumption of the possession or use of a radio-receiver equipment.””
The Italian TV licence fee is collected via your electricity company.
The licence fee for 2018, as in 2017 is Euro 90. Special rules apply for TV equipment in business premises (bars, hotels, B & B’s, shops etc.)
The licence fee is due if you possess (even if you do not use it) TV receiving equipment whether or not you actually watch the RAI channels. Pecuniary sanctions for non payment range from 200 to 600 euro and a criminal sanction applies of up to two years in prison.
If you don’t possess the relevant TV reception kit you can make an application online to disactivate the debit of the bill. You can also claim a refund .
The question of what constitutes TV receiving equipment is a contentious one. It appears to be agreed (although new decisions and interpretations from the authorities may change) that the mere ownership of a computer without a tuner (sintonizzatore) or decoder designed to be used to receive TV signals. So watching TV on a computer via the internet, e.g. RAI Play, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video etc. does not in itself give rise to requirement to pay the licence fee.
- The mere ownership of radio equipment in a family situation does not require a licence.
- Owners/Occupiers of homes in Italy are also liable to the fee if their home in Italy has a television set or other receiving equipment.
- One licence fee is due by each family unit (this is the family unit as registered at the Comune).
- You can make a declaration stating that you do possess any equipment and are therefore exempt – “dichiarazione sostitutiva”. This can be done online (see links below) or by downloading a form and sending it by raccomandata (registered post with receipt) or by PEC electronic mail.
- People over 75 and with a household income under Euro 8,000 per annum are exempt, as are members of the military and diplomats covered by a relevant international treaty. Exemption must however be claimed by filing the relevant forms.
- The request for exemption must be presented an annually, ideally on or before 20 December (to allow time for the request to be activated)
If you would like help understanding whether you are required to have an Italian TV licence please send us a message here.
We can prepare the forms for you to claim exemption – either on the grounds that do not own any TV equipment or you are covered by a diplomatic or military service treaty. Our standard fee starts at Euro 130 including VAT for assistance with the Declaration of Exemption and the same amount for each annual refund request.
Please contact us if you are interested.