Italy opens doors to wealthy post Brexit expats

Published:  3 Feb at 6 PM
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In a response to the probable realities of Britain’s exit from the EU, Italy is offering hi-so Britishers tax-free status as residents.

Soon after Portugal put in a claim as a haven for wealthy Brit professionals and loadsamoneyed retirees, Italy has joined the rush to provide tax-friendly destinations for disenchanted Britons fleeing a post-Brexit disaster zone. Italy’s offer only applies to the few who can meet its strict criteria, but includes Italians as well as nationals of any foreign country.

Candidates must have lived outside Italy for at least nine years before application and must have a considerable foreign income. Purchasing a property in the country is a must, as is living in it for at least six months every year. Candidates who comply with the above will be allowed tax-free foreign income for 15 years, provided they pay 100,000 euros a year to the Italian government.

The tax breaks are intended to boost consumption as well as investment, and the scheme seems similar to a UK initiative about to be discontinued. Italy’s attempt to woo high net worth expats deterred by the toughening up of UK tax rules is considered by experts to have a good chance of success.

It’s expected that a number of EU member states will present similar attractive options for wealthy Brits unwilling to stay in the UK post-Brexit. Not only is it a way to attract big spenders, it’s also a way to reduce the economic damage caused by UK expats forced to relocate back to Britain.

Portugal’s offer includes the abolition of a one per cent tax on property valued at a million euros and upwards. The levy has been reduced to 0.3 per cent annually, but now applies to all properties valued at over 600,000 euros. However, the tax now applies per person with, for example, a couple jointly owning a home worth 1,200,000 euros paying nothing. Estates and companies are also expected to benefit.

Source: Expatra
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