Moving to Genoa
Information and useful links if you are moving to Genoa. Please note that some information may have changed since the last update. Please check with your consulate or Questura for updated information.
DRIVING REQUIREMENTS IN ITALY
Driving licenses issued in the European Community are valid up to their expiration date. Upon expiration if the EU driver has Italian residency he/she must obtain an Italian license.
US driving licenses are not recognized in Italy, therefore, Americans intending to drive should obtain an International Driving Permit. If one is already abroad, you may apply for a permit by mail through the American Automobile Association (AAA), Worldwide Travel Dept., 1000 AAA Dr., Heathrow, FL 32746, tel. (407) 444-7000.
Americans registered as residents in Italy's Anagrafe must apply for an Italian license within one year of the date of registration.
Canadian drivers must have an international driving permit that accompanies their Canadian license. The permit alone is not sufficient. International driving permits can be obtained from the Canadian Automobile Association (CAA) and are valid for one year.
Australian and New Zealand Citizens:
Citizens from these countries must have an international driving permit issued in their respective countries to drive in Italy.
The Italian license required to drive an automobile is the "Patente B"
The written test, as stated previously, is exclusively in Italian. The test consists of 40 true or false questions.
SETTLING DOWN IN GENOA
The advice given here is of general nature and based on experiences by our members, which they have kindly shared. The following is meant as a guideline only. As laws and regulations change from time to time, AIWC is not responsible for any action taken based on this advice. We have provided links to additional information where available.
Moving to a new country and to a new city is always a daunting prospect. Even more so, if you don't speak the language and if you don't have a readymade network of relatives, friends or work colleagues at hand who can assist when things get tough. Here is some practical advice on how to feel more at home in Genoa.
To be absolutely sure, US citizens should check the latest requirements with the US Consulate in Genoa. More information in English can also be found from www.poliziadistato.it. Click the little British flag on the left hand corner. Information is also available in German, French and Spanish. If you want to stay in Italy more than three months, you will be required to apply residency in person at the Immigration Office of the Questure, the headquarters of the local police force.
Via Diaz 2
Open: Mondays to Fridays 08.30 – 12.30
The office is open on afternoons as well, but only for collecting the permit once issued.
When you go to the Questure, there is a small police post outside. The officer will give you a piece of paper with a set time when you can enter the office, let's say "10:30". It is worth going there early in the morning in order to get the time for entry. You can only go in at the time indicated. You will be directed to the Immigration office, where you will be queuing for the next available officer who will assist you. Not all the officers speak English, but they will fetch a colleague who does, if you don't speak Italian at all.
EU nationals wanting to stay longer than 3 months, apply for residency directly at the Comune di Genova, so you do not need to go to the Questure. The officials speak very little English or none at all. If you don't speak any Italian, take someone with you who does.
Cittadini stranieri appartenenti UE
Corso Torino 11, 1st floor
Open: Mondays and Wednesdays 08.10 – 15.30
Tuesdays and Thursdays 08.10 – 12.10
Fridays 08.10 – 13.00
Once your papers are in order, you will be issued a document, which proves that you are a resident in Genoa.
Every Italian is issued with a codice fiscale card at birth. It is the equivalent of the social security number in the US. In Italy this is also needed for tax purposes. This card is constantly being asked by people who want to sell you any kind of services (opening a bank account, gas, electricity, telephone, internet, school, joining a gym...). If you don't have this card, life becomes very difficult.
More information in English on how to get one: www.expatsinitaly.com
It is also possible to get the card before entering Italy. Many Italian embassies provide this service for people wanting to move to Italy. It is worth going to ask if they are willing to do it for you before leaving your home country.
Once you have received the residency permit, you can get an Italian ID card. Everyone in Italy is required by law to carry an ID with them at all times. In principal the police can stop you to ask for an ID. In reality, this happens very rarely. To obtain an ID card visit your local municipality office (for example, if you live in Nervi, you go to the Comune di Nervi office). You will need 2 photos and the residency permit. A card is usually issued while waiting and costs very little (5 euro 42 cent in February 2014).
Translations, apostillas and certified documents
Be prepared: you will need to get all foreign documents translated in Italian.
On top of that, you may be asked to obtain an apostilla. This is a document which certifies that the original document is genuine and issued by the correct authority. For example, you may be asked to provide an apostilla of a birth or a marriage certificate. An apostilla can only be obtained from the country where the document was issued in the first place. For example, if you got married in London and have a British marriage certificate, you will have to send it to the UK to get an apostilla. Naturally, an apostilla will have to be translated into Italian.
But often even this is not enough in Italy.
You may then be asked to get the translations certified.
This is the reason why it pays off to use a translator, who is authorised to act as one (i.e. not a friend who offers to translate the document from Italian to English). In Genoa certification of translations are done in the Tribunale di Genova (www.tribunale.genova.it), Piazza di Portoria 1. This is very close to Via XX Settembre. The translator has to come with you in order to provide his/her stamp and sign a paper saying that the translations are correct.