The Fiscal Code Number (Codice Fiscale, Italian taxpayers’ identification number, TIN, tax code, call it what you like) is a unique taxpayer code that identifies all individuals in their dealings with the Italian authorities and is a mandatory requirement for a whole series of activities.
Every Italian baby gets a Codice Fiscale at birth, while foreigners have to apply to the Italian Tax Agency (Agenzia delle Entrate).
When Is a Codice Fiscale Needed?
The Codice Fiscale is required to:
• Open a bank account
• Sign an employment contract
• Work as a freelancer
• Sign utility contracts
• File tax returns, pay tax and get refunds
• Access the health system
• Purchase sell and rent properties
• Purchase motor vehicles
• Enter into HP/Finance Leasing contracts
There are other many other activities that require the Codice Fiscale.
How is the code determined?
For individuals the code consists of consists of 16 alphanumeric characters. The regulations governing the method of calculating the tax code is contained in a decree of the Ministry of Finance dated 23 December 1976.
There are several web-sites that can generate your tax code for you but the law provides that the only valid fiscal code is the one that is issued by the Tax Agency.
Under no circumsntaces should you use a fiscal code number generated by one of these pages. if you have not been formally issued a fiscal code number the use of a number generated by a website could be deeemed fraudulent.
An algorithm is used to calculate the tax code and works as follows:
Surname (three letters): The consonants of your surname are taken in their order (last name first, followed by the first name then second and so on). If there are not enough consonants, a vowel or vowel can be used, again in the order in which they appear and after the consonants. If a name has fewer than three letters, the code part is completed by adding the letter X;
Name (three letters): the consonants of your first name (or names, if there is more than one) in their order (first name, followed by the second and so on) with similar rules as with the surname;
Date of birth and gender: (five alphanumeric characters);
Birth Year (two digits): take the last two digits of the year of birth;
Month of birth (a letter): each month of the year is associated with a letter according to a table;
Day of birth and gender (two digits): the two digits of your birth day (if between 1 and 9 a zero is added as the first digit). For females the number 40 is added. In this way, the field contains both the date of birth and gender;
Municipality (or Country) of birth (four alphanumeric characters): taking from a standard table of municipality (Comune) and foreign country codes;
Final Control Number: From these fifteen alphanumeric characters a final control number is arrived at based on a special algorithm.
How to get a Code
You can make an appointment to your local tax office tax office (Agenzia delle Entrate) with your ID documents, the completed form(s) and request a code. Normally it will be assigned immediately and without cost. The process is usualkly all in the Italian language. If you live abroad you can apply to your local Italian Consulate, and if you are intiating immigration proceedings they Consulate will assign the fiscal code number as part of the procedure.
Timescales can be variable depending on workload in the local office or Consulate ranging from a few days to a few months.
It is possible to obtain a fiscal code number remotely and we have teamed up with IL Law Firm to be able to offer this service to those who wish to receive their fiscal code number rapidly from your desktop or mobile phone. Click below to start the procedure.
How to check a Fiscal Code Number
The Italian Tax agency has a webpage where you can check if the fiscal code number you enter corresponds to a valid in the Tax Agency. at present there is no lookup facility – so you cannot insert someone’s name and details to find their fiscal code number – it only tells you if a code number is valid or not, and not who it belongs too.