If you are looking for a Power of Attorney:
- In Italy, you need to ask for a ‘Procura’
If you are looking for a General Power of Attorney
- In Italy, you need to ask for a “Procura Generale“
If you are looking for a Special Power of Attorney
- In Italy, you need to ask for a “Procura Speciale“
A Procura is a document that appoints another person or a company to act on your behalf. Like in any other country, it can be used for many reasons, although in my experience a Procura is very popular among foreign clients to set up an Italian company or buy a house in Italy. These operations require more than one day in Italy, and the foreign client signs a power of attorney to be free to go back home. Sometimes he doesn’t come to Italy at all.
Requirements for the Attorney
Be sure that the person you appoint to transact any business on your behalf has an Italian tax code (Codice Fiscale) or the power of attorney risks to be useless, and you should be asked to fly back to Italy again.
If you sign a Procura in Italy, remember to sign in front of a notary public (Notaio), or the power of attorney is invalid. In fact, Italian solicitors have no power to certify a power of attorney.
With the birth of the European Union, this rule has become somewhat weird. For instance, I am a registered lawyer both in Italy and in England. In Italy only notary public can legalize a power of attorney, in England, both notary and lawyer have the power. More than once, I have put my “English hat” to certify a document, only to switch to my “Italian hat” and use the document in my country. That’s Europe and we love it!
What happens if you are not in the European Union?
- So, if you are in Italy you can sign the power of attorney in front of an Italian notary public.
- If you don’t want to fly to Italy and you are in a European country, you can use your local officer. The EU law force Italy to accept the document. Just remember to add an apostille. Sometimes you don’t need it (i.e. a notary in France doesn’t require an apostille thanks to the Italian-French treaty) but it’s better to avoid any risk.
- What happens if you are outside Europe and you won’t or can’t fly to Italy?
Italy is a member of the Hague Convention on Apostille. It means that a power of attorney signed in your country in front of the local officer WITH apostille is valid in Italy. Just check the wording with your Italian lawyer. Sometimes power of attorney to incorporate a company or to buy a house could be quite complex.
What happens if you are not in the European Union AND your country is not a member of the Hague Convention?
If you are a lawyer, you are probably thinking that only a tiny and unknown country could be outside any of those members. On the contrary, one of the most important countries of our time stay in this area: namely China. Italy has never closed a double treaty to recognize the Chinese documents. Why? Please don’t ask me.
If you are a Chinese entrepreneur or a Chinese company and you want to operate in Italy, you have two options:
- The first solution is to go to the Italian consulate. I have used this system many times, and it works. Although it can be difficult, because the nearest Consulate is far away (China is no small state) or because the Consulate is not used to do these documents.
- The second solution is to have your documents certified by a solicitor of another European country. I have used this system more and more often in the last years. As a UK lawyer, I can certify Chinese documents, and because the UK and Italy are both members of the European Union, Italy has to accept my certification. It’s a bit tricky but it works as well and it’s legal of course.
The choice is yours. Whatever solution you pick, welcome to Italy!
Download the Template
UPDATE: We received over 100 requests in just two months asking about a power of attorney. Here is a template you can download for a limited cost. Just click and pay through PayPal or secure server.
Template General Power of Attorney Italy
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My wife is Italian and needs a (general) power of attorney to have her father operate her bank account in Italy and attend to any other matters of importance. Would you be able to provide the wording and serve as her Notaio if she signs the document here in New Zealand in front of a public notary and get’s an Apostille seal for it?
Hi Peter, you don’t need to pay anyone in Italy. A notary public in New Zealand + apostille is enough. Well, at least in theory. I am not sure that many bank officers are confortable with the international law. If your wife plans to be in Italy at one point this year, we can fix a meeting with one of my Italian notaries. If she can’t, reply this message and I will think to another solution. Cheers
Thanks for your reply Stefano. Is there any specific wording that I need for the ‘Procura Generale’. Does the Notary Public in NZ write this in English or Italian? I’m happy to pay you for providing us with this if it will smooth things. It would be useful for my wife’s father to have a power of attorney from her anyway and we need to do this before she goes back to Italy.
In my experience, it’s better in Italian. In fact not many people speak a good English in Italy. You can download a template of general power of attorney + explanation here: Template General Power of Attorney Italy
I was born in Italy, and now live in UK. A relative of mine has died in Italy. Would an Italian Lawyer require a power of attorney to enquire if she left a will.
Ciao Anna. If nobody contact you, it could be a good idea to appoint a lawyer. In theory you should be contacted by the other Italian heirs. However, there isn’t any sanction if they refuse to do so. I have seen many times the expat not being informed by the local heirs, sometimes just because they don’t speak a good English. Please don’t read my words as a legal opinion, just as a friendly suggestion.
Thank you Stefano,
your reply is very helpful. I have now appointed a lawyer, but she requests power of attorney.
Is this necessary, as I only need to enquire whether a will was left.
Hehe if you have appointed a lawyer I can’t enter into your internal discussions. Keep us posted and “Ad Majora”
I have Power of Attorney documents for both my parents made up at the Italian Consulate. Is this document valid only in Italy or can it be used in the UK.
A power of attorney made at the Italian Consulate is made “in Italy”. It’s valid in Italy. Sometimes it could be used in other countries with an apostille, but you should check with the local offices. Too many variables to provide a reply in a post (text, language, etc.)
My father passed away recently and as a result I have inherited his apartment. I was born and live in Jersey in the Channel Islands and my father was born and lived in Italy. The problem I have is none of my remaining family in Italy speak English, but through various people translating for me I have found out I must pay an inheritance tax. I have tried contacting the Italian consulate here in Jersey, without much success and I was hoping you can give me some guidance on how to proceed. Please can you advise what paperwork I will need, how much the inheritance tax is likely to be and will I have to travel to Italy to sign and complete the relevant paperwork.
Any information you can supply me with regards to the process would be greatly appreciated.
Hi Natalie. What they told you isn’t completely true. You have 12 months from the death of your father to decide if you want to take his properties (and pay the inheritance tax) or not.
Also if there are common properties (for instance your father left 2 apartments to 2 children) this is the best moment to split the property (i.e. 1 apartment each) or your are going to pay double later.
I can’t provide a whole analysis online. It’s not just a matter of time, other lawyers would not like that. My suggestion: try to find a lawyer or a notary in the area of your father who speaks English. I would not count on the Italian consulates in the UK. It’s not their business.
I am sorry but I only manage a few inheritances per year from a few millions up or trusts. If you can’t find anyone, let me know your area and will check among my contacts. All the best
A non italian citizen (Singapore) is in Italy on holidays, and would like to grant a power of attorney to a person residing in South America.
Could he go a a notary public and have the power of attorney signed before him? Are there any other formalities that the non-resident must comply with?
Thanks for your assitance
Hi Luiz. Yes a Singapore citizen can go to a notary public in Italy and sign a power of attorney valid IN ITALY. I can’t reply for South America. Cheers
My mother passed away in July of 2011. She did not leave a will and as a result her estate needs to be divided between me (who lives in Australia) and my 3 sisters who all live in Italy. I have sent a procura to my brother in law so that there would be less conflict between my sisters. However, my sisters have been in much disagreement and to my knowledge the apartment is vacant to this day and apparently for sale. My issue is that they don’t contact me often and therefore there is no way of knowing if the property has actually been sold or if someone is renting and they haven’t told me. Is there any way i can find this out? If they do sell the property does my share of the money automatically come to me? Any type of advice would be much appreciated.
Hi Agata. If they sell the property, they SHOULD send you the money. However it’s not automatic. I would suggest to ask to a local friend or to an attorney to keep an eye on the property.
Eventually you can buy a report from the real estate registry once a year. If the property is sold, the notary public update the registry automatically.
I receive many request of reports on companies and real estate. Unfortunately they can’t be obtained online directly. Lawyers and other professionals have special access. I will see if I can add an online form into this website.
avrei necessità di revocare un Power of Attorney rilasciato qualche tempo fa ad un avvocato americano per gestire una proprietà sita a Chicago che ho ereditato dalla mia defunta moglie, cittadina statunitense. Mi sono già procurato un modello di “Notice of Revocation of Durable Power of Attorney” ma adesso si pone il problema di come farlo autenticare: esiste in Italia una figura equivalente al notary public americano che possa appunto autenticare la revoca conferendole così validità giuridica negli Stati Uniti?
Spero tu possa aiutarmi a risolvere il mio problema, grazie mille!
Ciao Sergio. Ci sono due sistemi:
1) Chiedi al notaio Italiano di preparare una normale autentica. E di aggiungere una “apostille”. Se non sa come fare … vai da un’altro notaio.
2) Al consolato USA, servizio “apostille”.
My father has lost capacity through dementia. He lives in the UK, has Italian nationality and owns a house in Italy which he bought a few years ago. His three children also live in the UK and I am his attorney under an English Enduring Power of Attorney which I have been told by the consulate has no validity in Italy.
What must I do either to keep and rent out his Italian property or to sell it. What organisation in Italy safeguards the interests of people who lose capacity, and do they keep the proceeds of the sale or must they be placed with a trustee? Do they have a website?
He has not made a will either here or in Italy. What do we have to do on his death?
Sorry to ask so many questions.
Carol I can’t provide a full consultancy in a comment. But you are right. Enduring power of attorney have a limited value in Italy. For instance, if you want to refuse/manage an inheritance, you need a special power of attorney.
Sadly no institution safeguard this interests trough a simple request. If you send me an email with a detail of what you want to do (i.e. rent? sell? where is the property?) I will provide a few tips and put in contact with one of my colleagues (or reply myself, if I can help directly).
Dear Stefano (and Carol),
I am an Australian lawyer (and a public notary).
I am about to advise a client in similar situation as Carol’s father (a general enduring power of attorney), but the enduring attorney wants to appoint a representative in Italy to carry out a real estate transaction. In Australia, normally there would be no problem so long as the enduring power of attorney is unrestricted and permits delegation.
Is there a Italian law (or treaty) that permits powers of attorney from non-EU countries to be recognized for use in Italy? Even for enduring powers of attorney? Notaries in trade centres in Florence or Rome or Milan or Bologna must surely know?
Dear Romano, a general power of attorney is valid in Italy if certified WITH APOSTILLE (or by the Italian Consulate). Since real estate and inheritance are a delicate matter, I would suggest to get a more specific power of attorney. Said that, if the general power of attorney is draft correctly, and the case is straight (i.e. sell a house, not manage a complex inheritance), the notary public will probably accept a general power of attorney too.
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I would like to know please if a bill (parcella proforma) sent via email for lawyer’s fees is legal.
My Italian lawyer sent me a bill just a few days ago and I questioned it so she is now threatening “coato”, claim on property, to recuperate.
I was supposed to get an award from the Italian Govt. I won but the money is blocked for technical reasons much too complicated to get into right now.
She is asking for 60 per cent and the case is still ongoing.
She never had to go to court she just filed some papers (ricorso per riparazione per ingiusta detenzione).
Sorry to be so long but doesn’t she have to send a bill via registerd mail? Is an unsigned internet bill enough for her to go to a judge and get an injunction ? She is becoming nasty in her emails and I feel harrassed.
By the way I am living in France.
Thanks so much.
Hi Janet, nasty situation for me as well. I am a lawyer too, and I can get nasty when clients don’t pay (smile). From a professional point of view, I should pass. From a human point of view, maybe you can propose your lawyer to split your price (?). In short, if she solve the “technical reason” she can keep her bill + a bonus.
Picking up on an answer above, it is now just past 1 year (1st June) when my wifes father died in Italy, we live in UK. We have only just been asked to give a relative power of attoney, but are not sure whether to trust him, as his family could benefit from the property.
Have we missed our opportunity to inherit because 1 year has passed without agreement? Thank you
You have 1 year from the start of the inheritance to prepare a due diligence and REFUSE the inheritance.
In your case, it seems that you are more worried about NOT ACCEPTING the inheritance. This is more a case by case reply. However, it’s usually not a good sign that you haven’t get any papers in 1 year. Maybe you would like to ask to a local lawyer, to check the Land Registry. If the inheritance has been managed correctly, nobody will know that you didn’t trust your relatives.
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Personally I don’t care (smile). I don’t make money selling contents. If you do, probably the only solution is to establish a good reputation for yourself, not just your website. Good luck
an honor to deal with you
I LIVE IN THE UNITED STATES, NEW YORK TO BE EXACT. I NEED TO GIVE MY SISTER IN ITALY POWER OF ATTORNEY TO SELL SOME PROPERTY AND ALSO SOME BANK PROBLEMS THAT HAVE COME UP AFTER MY DAD PASSED AWAY IN MAY. I WAS TOLD TO GO TO THE ITALIAN EMBASSY BUT THEY TELL ME NO BECAUSE I AM NOT AN ITALIAN CITIZEN. WHAT DO I DO?
Hi Marcello, probably they gave you a wrong advise. It’s the Italian Consulate, not the Italian Embassy, that usually certify a power of attorney. Even better, go to an attorney, it’s fast and (in the US) the cost is very small.
To be used in Italy, the power of attorney need an apostille (tell the attorney, he will know. Or read the post in this website).
Stefano, an Italian citizen living in Italy wants to sell property in New Jersey and appoint his attorney as POA to sign the deed etc. Can the seller simply have a POA created pursuant to NJ law by his NJ attorney executed in Italy in front of a Italian Notary, or is a special form required? Many thanks.
I would strongly suggest to NOT use a New Jersey power of attorney. I have been appointed by POA many times in New Jersey and New York because the high number of Italian-American in the area (mainly to manage inheritance, trusts and real estates). A USA POA often doesn’t work or force you to pay more transfer taxes in Italy.
Contact a real estate lawyer or a public notary used to deal with US clients. Ask them to write the POA and translate it in English. Just my opinion.
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Very Interesting! Thanks
Thanks for sharing excellent informations
Iam an Italian citizen living in Australia. I want to make a power of attorney so i can allow my father to sell my car back in italy. I went to the consulate but they gave me an appointment 1 month from now and i need this to be done asap. Could you suggest me other cheaper options so its done in a few days???
I don’t think there is a cheaper option. Surely there is a faster option. Going to a local solicitor or notary public. In a main city they can provide the apostille in 1-3 days. Good luck
I hope you can help. I live in Liverpool, UK and am a British citizen. need to get an ‘atto di procura’ ASAP to authorise my ex partner (an Italian citizen) to sign the rogito on my behalf on our property in Italy as I am unable to travel to Italy to sign it. I’m totally confused as to whether I can go to any lawyer or if I need to go to the consolato (the one nearest me is closed for the summer in good Italian style 🙂 ) Do you have any idea what is the quickest way for me to organise this?
I would appreciate any pointers in the right direction.
Hi Alison, this is tricky. In general a UK solicitor and the Italian consulate provide the same service: they certificate your signature. They both send the certification to the Foreign Office for the apostille. So you can use either a UK solicitor or a Consulate.
However real estate sales in Italy requires a public act (an act with special features, usually done in front of a notary public). You can still use a solicitor but if the act isn’t done properly, it will be invalid. Usually the Consulate doesn’t provide a consulting service, and a normal UK solicitor will not know how to do document either. In short: better than you ask to the notary public in Italy or to a solicitor with Italian-International experience.
Good day! I have a question, my parents passed away in Italy , I do not know if they made a will, but they have a home and it’s just sitting there. I have sisters in Italy and for some reason every time I ask about the house if we can sell it, they always change the subject! I don’t know if they are hiding something from me?possibly a law I’m not famailiar with? It will be almost 3 yrs my parents passed away. Can you please tell me what I can do, or if they are hiding something from me? Thank you so much! Roxanne
Hi Roxanne. I don’t know if your sister is hiding anything. But I can tell you that – in order to sell the house – you should register the inheritance. This is NOT automatic.
If there is no will, you still have the right to a piece of the cake (Italy always protect the children of the deceased, even against the will).
Hi Stephano, if I sell ipad and other hardware to Italy from another European country, do I have to pay VAT?
Short reply: yes
Long reply: appoint an accountant. Never mess with intra-European VAT just to save some money.
Experienced reply: Hardware has been used to commit huge VAT fraud in the past (search on Goggle “VAT carousel”). If you are honest, as I am sure you are, I would not go there. Not with me anyway!!!
Great post however I was wanting to know if you could write a little more on this topic and provide a template? I’d be very grateful. Thank you!
Templates are coming in September. Promise!
I am hoping you can help me as you seem to be quite knowledgeable on POA. I am a Canadian Citizen living in Canada and have a friend living in Italy who would like to make me their POA and beneficiary, immediately. I am considering it but I would like to know if, by doing so, there are any risks for me and if I would have to givve out personal information.
Any advice you can give me would be greatly appreciated.
1. I don’t see a big risk, but – yes – there are some risks. For instance, you purchase something and your client/friend doesn’t pay the settlement, I bet that the seller will ask you the payment.
2. Yes you have to provide personal details to file the POA. Also you probably have to register for an Italian identification code (Codice Fiscale). Not mandatory all the time, but helps.
Great blog! I’m a lawyer as well and I’m hoping to start my own blog soon. Any suggestions? Thank you!
Write one post today. Anything you like. THEN you can go online and learn from others. I would not suggest this strategy to everybody, but lawyers tend to plan to much. Act now, break that psychological barrier, and everything will look simpler. Just my idea!
Hi Stefano, if a parent who is from Italy naturalized in the states in the 60’s left a small land parcel, can I both engage italian citizenship and live on that inherited land and leave north america. I have read so much everywhere and am young so not knowing what path?? molto grazie
No, you cannot (in this way). But, if you rent this land, you can ask for a peculiar permit of stay that let you live in Italy without working
I am in the process of doing a “Procura Speciale” with an Italian Notairo and have found an English Notario to deal with this in the UK on behalf of my sisters. I need to translate the document into English, which most of it is Italian law and regulations. I have tried to translate it myself, but it’s beyond my capabilities as it is to technical. Do you know where I could find this in English?
I have just obtained a procure Generale from the Italian consulate to act on behalf of my father to deal with the inheritance of his deceased sisters house and the sale of it to a family member (unfortunately there is no will) Firstly do you know if it is essential for me to travel to Italy to sign the necessary contracts for these 2 transactions or can they be emailed/faxed to me.in the UK?
I will also need Power of Attorney for my father in the UK. Can I use the Italian procura or do I need to apply for an English one?
Finally I read in one of the earlier comments that the nominated person for the procuraI needs to have a codice fiscale iThis was not mentioned to me at the Italian consulate and I do not have one – is this a problem?
Many thanks for any advice you can give.
I own property in Italy. I am trying to appoint a friend to be power of attorney for my land, to act on my behalf, as I am currently living in America. Would I need to visit an Italian Consulate and have a document prepared in an Italian porcura to be notarized and send to my friend. Please help????
I would like to buy an italian registered car from a lady of french Nationality. She wrote to me that she has a power attorney to sell her car along with all the necessary documents of the vehicle. But unfortunately, i do not know how to proceed with this transaction. Would you please help me if i forward you all emails that I have received from her. Once she give me the power of attorney, can I go ahead with the procurement of the car? What are the legal procedures for registering the car in my name?
Hello, My father in law gave a POA to his brother in law in Italy to sell a property. We recently found out that they sold the property and kept the money. They have not responded to us and now in the mean time my father in law passed away. We are not sure if he gave them a general POA or “speciale POA”, my question is if they have a general poa can they still act on his behalf after his death? Thank you Daniela
No. With the death of your father-in-law, the POA expired.
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Stefano: Thanks for this really informative post!
If an Italian citizen lives in the US and has an international power of attorney drafted, does it matter if the text is in English or Italian? I am wondering if it might be easier to just have it translated to Italian afterwards, and have the translation notorized.
Obviously that should be translated and notarized, in order to be used in Italian transactions.
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Hello, does a special POA made to sell a house expire if the person who has been given power attorney dies or can someone else related to that person take over the house?
POA is personal. If the person who gave the POA to sell is died, the POA is ineffective and you need to have a new POA by the heirs
My mom’s aunt died without a will last month. She had property. she had a bank account. My mom does not live in italy anymore, she has lived in America for the past 55 years. We went to italy and she had a power of attorney for her nephew drawn up by a notray. Also acquired a codice fiscale. Recently we were told her bank, Bank Fideuram requires a separate proxy for her to cash the check for her portion of the balance remaining in the account? Should not the power of attorney suffice? Please advise.
It’s all up to what is written in the POA drawn up by the notary (if included the power to cash)
I mentions only the sale of the property and the sale of the furniture. So, I assume she will need another one to mention the liquidation of all bank accounts of the deceased. Where is the best place to have this done. We live in California and the relative she is giving the power of attorney to is in Italy? What is the approximate cost for this?
I will give you an answer soon
My mother lives in Australia, her mother passed in 1992, in that same year my first cousin (ie: son of my mother’s sister) came to Australia with a procura guessing (generale. He had this document signed by each other sibling (ie: my mother, her other sister and two other brothers). However, he held the document in his hand and only showing them where to sign and I do not believe they were given an opportunity to read this document, nor do I believe each signature would have been witnessed by a notary or a justice of peace here. What are the circumstances for a document of this type to be valid? I don’t know whether he had visited the Italian consulate here in Australia before returning to Italy. Have they breached any laws in this case? I am curious to learn as this has been weighing on my mind. Thanking you, kindest regards, Giovanna.
From what you refer, it doesn’t seem that document is valid.
your blog is very helpful and interesting.
We are in the Dominican Republic considering to buy a property in Umbria. We intend to do it with a PoA.
Can this document be drawn up by an Italian laywer and then authorized by a local (Dominican) notary. Does it have to be apostilled?
Is it necessary that I and my wife get the ‘codices fiscales’first?
N & J
POA can be drawn by an Italian Lawyer (I am an Italian Lawyer), then your notary will authorize it. It will be apostilled.
You needn’t to get “codice fiscale” (codice fiscale is given to the foreigner that get a permit of stay and lives in Italy).
Salve. Siamo 4 fratelli residenti, 3 di noi, in Italia, mentre una mia sorella vive in USA. Una zia deceduta da poco ci ha lasciato, tramite testamento olografo, un conto in banca e la sua casa. Noi 3 abbiamo già ottenuto parte dei fondi dalla banca mentre mia sorella, residente in USA, ha difficoltà a ricevere i soldi dalla banca perché non ha residenza in Italia e non ha il conto bancario in Italia. E’ un vero problema o la banca temporeggia per convenienza propria? Come può mia sorella ricevere i soldi che le spettano? Grazie, saluti, RB
E’ un problema ma si può risolvere. La sorella che vive negli USA può lasciare una procura con facoltà di incasso ad uno o più di voi, che potrete poi presentarvi in banca per la sua parte.
Hello Stephano, I have a question my husband’s grandather’s brother is the only one that’s left in Italy along with my husband ‘s grandmother, he asked us to send him a procura generale for him to send out the money that the grandfather left for my husband cause my mother in law died and she was the only child so now everything goes to my husband, but we have concern that he’s stealing from us, does that procura gives him the attorney for everything now??? we should of not given him the power??? can u help us with that…he has the house which he lives in with the grandmother that is dying soon..,can u help please.,,thank you
My father passed away 3 years ago in Canada (mmigrated from Italy in the 1950’s.) This year my cousin called and wants my brother and I to take a 1982 procura generale my father did appointing his Dad who is know dead and make a procura general with my name and my brother’s but now give him power of attorney. The irony is my Dad sold all our property to my cousin. If my cousin did not change title to his name and I go ahead with this procura will I possibly have to pay inheritance taxes, or any other taxes.
I reside in Canada.
Thanks for your ehlp.
When you write “my Dad sold all our property to my cousin”, do you mean they entered into a deed in Italy (your cousin directly, and your dad “through” the procura you mentioned) ?
I just found out that the property is still in my Dad’s name in the Catasto. I believe my cousin’s never changed the deed into their name but my understanding is my father sold them the property.
So, definitely, you should ask to your cousin why he needs your procura, if the property is still in your dad’s name. Maybe he wants to sell that property to other persons?
You’re an awesome copy writer. I have subscribed to your website cos I’d rather not miss the next posts
My son Michael is Italian but we live in New Zealand. His father passed away when he was little and recently both his grand parents have passed away too.
We need a procura that gives his Aunty and uncle power of attourney over his affairs in Italy as there is some property that needs to be sold.
I live in Auckland and am not sure what I need to do. I have heard I may need to go to wellington to see the only lawyer there that can do this for me and then go to the Embassy to get it signed. Do you know of any other easier options?
No. That’s correct.
Hi Stefano sorry I was following the wrong thread!!
My son Michael is Italian but we live in New Zealand. His father passed away when he was little and recently both his grand parents have passed away too.
We need a procura that gives his Aunty and uncle power of attourney over his affairs in Italy as there is some property that needs to be sold.
I live in Auckland and am not sure what I need to do. I have heard I may need to go to wellington to see the only lawyer there that can do this for me and then go to the Embassy to get it signed. Do you know of any other easier options?
My mother-in-law was born in Italy, now lives in Largo Florida, and became an American citizen in 1952. My wife and I live in New Jersey. She has 4 brothers and sisters living in Italy. Their parents house is now on the market for sale, and she must give Power of Attorney to a brother. The Italian Notary prepared a Procura, and they told us we must take her to the Consulate in Miami. I have communicated with the Consulate numerous times and get different reasons why they can’t do it. They said she must live in Miami, then they said they need the Procura emailed in Word document (I did), then they said she must be Italian citizenwith Italian passport(she only has American passport). She is elderly and fragile, and we must fly to Tampa to pick her up, and then drive her 5 hours to Miami, so we want it to proceed smoothly, but after many weeks I am getting nowhere, What do you suggest I need to do? My wife, her daughter, has POA over her in the States.
I don’t understand why your wife should go to Miami if she lives in New Jersey. And, besides it, she is American, not Italian. So, what I think is that the procedure the Italian notary wants to do is not correct, maybe he thought that your wife was also Italian.
I can give you my legal advice, let me know if you need it.
My sister, who was a British citizen, died of cancer in Italy 3 months ago. We were told that she had made changes to her will, shortly before her death. As she had changed solicitors, we don’t seem to be able to get any information.
She kept in touch but was somewhat confused as she was on strong pain medication. Is it possible for us to find out who the notary is or do we just have to wait? As family members do we have the right to see the will even if she removed some of us from it?
No to your first question, yes to the second one.
Hi, my dad was from Italy he passed away in 1980.He was left the house he grew up in Italy.His sister has lived in the house ever since and she died a few months ago.My fathers other sister say we need to provide our birth certificates and they will bring them to Italy.Does this sound right to you?I am leary about my birth certificate being brought to Italy.She says she needs to provide proof he had children because he was single when the house was willed to him.Please respond as soon as possible.Thank you!
It is correct. If you want to feel ease with it, you and your siblings can give me POA to manage the matter with your aunt.
Good day Michele. My brother was given power of attorney for my late mother’s bank account in Italy, before she passed away in 2009. My question is this – should the bank account have been included in my mom’s estate, or could he make a decision to close the account after her death without advising the other heirs to her estate? We are five siblings all residing in South Africa. I was one of the executors of her estate, and would like to know how we can obtain details about the bank account she held in Italy? Many thanks, Laura.
Good day Michele. We are 5 siblings all living in South Africa. Both my parents lived here from 1960 up to their deaths, my dad in 2004 and my mom in 2009. My eldest brother was given POA for my mom’s bank account in Italy in 2007. My question is this: should that bank account have been included in my mom’s estate (of which I am one of the executors, my eldest brother being the other), or would his POA still have been effective after her death for him to be able to close the bank account? Is there any way that that we can obtain details of the bank account, as we have reason to believe that some of the money was meant to be shared by all of us.
Any advise would be mush appreciated. Many thanks.
The fact that your eldest brother had POA for the bank account in Italy doesn’t mean that he became the only owner of that account. After closing, he should give an account of what is left.
You try amicably with him, otherwise you should open a case in Italy.
My father was born in Italy but is now a US citizen and lives in the US. He owns property in Calabria and his sister has been paying the taxes for him. He gave her a POA years ago and he says it’s now expired. What type of POA can we do in the US for my aunt to use in Italy. My father is ill and will not be traveling to Italy any time soon.
what does he mean with “expired” ? was the POA “time-limited” or else?
Ciao Michele, My wife had an uncle in Italy that passed away. His wife died and his only son died. Who is entitled to collect his estate (Properties and money)?
Did he die without lefting any will?
He left no will! Now what do we do?
– this uncle of your wife has living brothers and/or sisters? Living father/mother? Living grandfather/mother?
– if he has no living brothers/sisters/etc., are there sons of brothers and/or sisters of him?
– is he related to your wife because she is daughter of his brother/sister?
– did his only son and wife die BEFORE he died?
He has a living brother and sister and my wife’s Father is dead but he was alive at the time his brother died! His only son and wife died before him.
So, his living brother and sister are entitled to inherit his properties, and also the sons of your wife’s father (that is: your wife! If she is the only daughter of him, she inherit the full quote of her father).
My parents have property in Sicily and one of our relatives would like to buy it. My parents can not travel– can they sign the deed in the US? can you please let me know the necessary steps that need to occur.
No, the deed have to be signed in Italy, before a notary. While, if you cannot come in person in Italy to sign the deed, you can give POA to anyone in Italy through US.
thank you. Can you please advise what our next step would be to create the POA. My parents are located in the capital district of NY (Albany NY).
They should go to a notary and write a POA to sell their property (this property have to be identified precisely, according to what results from the Italian records – Conservatoria Registri Immobiliari): mentioning that the deed will be done with “name of the buyers”, according to Italian laws (but, if anything particular should be agreed with the deed, besides the mere purchase, it should be specified in the POA, because the nominee should have the full powers to sign in respect to the definitive content of the deed).
In the POA, obviously, the nominee have to be identified fully.
The POA should be in English, with oath by the notary, then translated into Italian and apostilled
thank you– is there anywhere in the capital district (Albany NY)-that they can go to – to create the POA?
This I can not know, I am in Italy 🙂
Ciao Michele, my grandmother died in Italy about 9 years ago and the family house was left to the children, Some live in UK and soome in Italy. Some of those children have died since and left surviving children. The property has been empty for around 7 years and may be uninhabitable and may even need repair to make it non dangerous to public. My Father, an Italian national, living in UK has been asked to go to Italy to sort things out. We are worried that he will get there to find unpaid local property taxes and repair costs. What are his liabilities? We have heard that after a period of 10 years of abandonment the Government take the property, is that true? If he should go to Italy what should he look out for and who should he contact first? Does any liabilities that the sons and daughters incur pass down to their children?
Sorry it’s a long question.
In Italy, the heirs of an estate have to accept it within 10 years from the death of the owner, otherwise they are meant as if they gave up to it.
Obviously, when they accept, they have to pay every taxes related to the estate, even the past ones.
So, if your father didn’t accept, he should evaluate if “the game is worth the candle”, or if, between expenses and taxes, he (and the others) should pay a high amount before having the possibility to get anything from it.
To know if there are payments to be done, he could ask to the Municipality where the estate is located.
Hi Michele- first thank you for such a valuable exchange of information. My father (who lives I Australia) and his siblings (in Italy) have been disputing the division of the family home – following the death of his remaining parent. My father was not in agreement with how they divided the property (the method and nor the outcome) but the division went ahead (apparently a relative had a procura and he signed for my father) and it has been ‘registered’. The papers have not been through final approval (presumably at the registry office) however because my father refused to sign. What steps does my father need to take to dispute the division without involving the courts?
Sorry, the Court should be involved.
Dear Stefano L. Tresca,
My grandfather passed away in 2006, but the inheritance has not been released to his children, as one of them believes she is entitled to all of the property and assets and refuses to sign the from accepting her share. My uncle has been advised by the Italian Consulate in Australia, and by his lawyer that unless all the heirs sign, the document will not be legal, and cannot be submitted to the court or if in the case it is, without her signature, the court will throw it out. At this point, he has been advised that if she does not sign the document along with everyone else, then no one can receive their share of the inheritance. I’ve attempted to help him by looking at the Italian Civil Code, and other sources of information to determine if there is a way they can still submit their claim, without her signature, so at least when the time expires, the court will see that accepted their share. Could you please tell me if my uncle has received the correct legal advice? Surely, there are legal options when one of the heirs doesn’t agree to the inheritance, that will allow the other heirs to at least accept their share.
Thank-you for your time.
Sure thing, Karen, there is a way.
Unfortunately, today is a busy day for me, but tomorrow I should give you the right hint to come up with this issue.
Dear Michele Spadaro,
Thank-you for taking the time to respond to me. I look forward to finding out if there are any other legal options available in this matter.
As I promised you, I am giving you a hint about your case.
The “reluctant” child has time until 2016 (exactly, until the moment 10 years will pass from the death of your grandfather) to accept her share. If the time passes, she is considered as she gave up her share, so the others can go ahead without her.
As a variant, if you don’t want to wait until 2016, you can issue a legal application with an Italian judge, to ask that a term is fixed to the person in order to accept or give up
Thank-you very much for your timely and helpful response.
My Uncle has been advised that as both himself and his siblings cannot accept their inheritance without her signature that they too will lose their inheritance when the time lapses, as they will not submit any signed documentation without her signature too.
Could you please tell me if this information is correct and if there a way for them to submit their acceptance without her?
Thank-you again for your time.
Obviously the other heirs should have accepted the inheritance.
If not yet, they should hurry up with starting the judicial procedure to make haste to the reluctant sibling.
I suggest that you all consider to discuss the point, then hire a lawyer (like me) to manage the case in Italy… before it’s too late!
Great post. Thx
Dear Stefano, I have a flat in Italy and the tenants haven’t paid rent for 8 months. My aunt wants me to sign a procurator specials so she can get them removed. Will giving her this power of attorney to sell the flat?
It doesn’t seem to me that this is necessary. If you are the owner of the flat (as I understand), you can simply hire a lawyer that starts the procedure to send away the tenants (of course, I am legitimate as a lawyer before the Italian Courts).
My father, a U.S. citizen passed away in his retirement in Rome, Italy June 2014. He left a sizable inheritance of which I was excluded for the exception of 5k. I hired an attorney in Rome to see if they could secure my proper share, including his apartment and Italian assets. They asked me to perform a power of attorney, of which I did. I have received my 5k, designated by the trust, and my sisters and his girlfriend receiving quite a sum. How do I revoke the POA? I have sent e-mails to the Italian attorneys with no response which has me worried. They will not respond if his apartment has sold, nor his Italian assets. Could they have done something illegal/unethical since they have my power of attorney. Do I need to go to a Notary here in California to cancel the POA?
Thank you kindly,
Hi mike, my father just passed away in July, his property consisted of a condo and a piece of land. Then seperatly there is a house that he co-owned with his two nieces. ( 50% my father and 50% the nieces) two years ago we went to a lawyer in Italy and had first, a will drawn up that he passes the house on to me when he passes and then a seperate document that made me partner with him with the condo and the land, then at the time of his death makes me full owner. Is there a time period I have to claim, call or notify on what was left to me?
According to Italian laws, you have 10 years after the time your father passed away, to accept your position as “heir”. that means to accept your full position as heir, credits and debits together.
Hope this answer fully to your doubts. Otherswise, please ask again.
Thanks mike for the fast response. Wow 10 years that’s a relief. Also, there is money in a bank and I was told in order for me to get it I need 3 documents. Death certificate, (got it), a notorized letter from my brother and sister stating they don’t want anything that my father left me, (got it) and a document called a ???succesione??? That needs my fathers two neices signatures on them. Why?
that is “dichiarazione di successione”. The Italian Authorities need it to “know” that your father passed away and that there are possible heirs of his properties.
I just added this site to my reader, excellent stuff.
I wanted to write you one tiny note to be able to say thank you once again
I have been surfing online more than three hours today, I have finally found the answer to my question
Nice post. I learn something new and challenging
Hello Mike, i received thru a testamento olografo an inheritance from my cousin in italy, i paid all the debts and taxes and after the judge ruled that i could i transferred most of the assets to the usa where I live, now we have a claim that the will may have been false. If the eventual judgment were to support this claim do I have to return the assets, I already have them in protected investments and I don’t think they could be touched, but i would appreciate your opinion (I transferred the assets two years ago) Thank you in advance
Hi Frank, that could be not enough. If you’ll receive notification of the claim (I don’t understand if anybody already issued a claim in a tribunal or not), you should contact me again.
My uncle passed away in April this year and has left a parcel of land and sizeable investments. He has no children and not married. He had two brothers both of whom died before him, both his brothers were married and both had children. One of the wives is still alive – is she entitled to a share of her late husband’s share of the estate or do the children inherit it all?
Your help is very much appreciated. Grazie.
She will inherit a share.
Our aunty in Italy recently passed away and it appears no will has been left, though she did say that a will existed (olografo), we suspect one of our cousins has destroyed it, but this is obviously difficult to prove. Nonetheless, my mother has a power of attorney in Italy, however if she wished to cancel that and give me power of attorney, how would we do that here in Australia? Appreciate that I would have to fly to Italy and sign doucments, however we have had bad experiences with POA before…
it depends on what is written on the POA of your mother. I should see it.
My uncle wrote my sister and I out of my grandmothers will a few months before her death. We have been included in her will for our entire life. Are we powerless to fight this? We are American citizens but are registered as legitimate children of our Italian father (who passed away about 9 months before our Nonna passed) We have also successfully inherited a previous property inheritance directly passed down from our father at the time of his death, but were appointed to receive his half of her estate upon her death. (Uncle wrote us out of the will three months before her passing) All of our surviving Italian relatives (except my Uncle) are aware of this previous will and can vouch for its previous legitimacy.
We were there in Italy when our father passed and our Uncle vowed that he would get our grandmothers entire estate and that we didn’t deserve any of it.
It’s a very large estate with multiple properties and an extensive valuable art collection and large family jewelry collection that was in a safe deposit.
When we went over for Nonnas funeral, we weren’t included and he wouldn’t let us in her house to collect family photographs or our fathers paintings. (He was a fine art painter).
What are the chances that we can at least have some of our inheritance, or even just half of our family photos?!?
How often do people in our situation actually successfully contest something like this and how long might this fight take?!
it seems you will need to issue a legal proceedings in Italy called “divisione giudiziaria”: this means a judge will evaluate (through an appointed expert) the entire properties left by your grandmother, give them a price and order their sale; after that, the heirs will divide the money according to their shares. Alternatively, if possible, the properties will be assigned in parts to all the heirs, according to their shares (so, no sale).
But it worries the behaviour of your uncle, that let imagine he can take away the paintings for his own and exclusive profit. It could be recommended to issue a legal proceedings to order the confiscation of assets, waiting for the “divisione giudiziaria”.
My mother inherited an apartment in Figgaratzi from her uncle. His wife however contested this and the apartment was allegedly sold after a court case and she was given a portion of the sale price. All this was handled by a cousin of hers to whom she gave full power of attorney. The process has been ongoing for 5 years and the last she heard was it has been lodged with the master and she must wait but this has been almost two years. What can she do and where can she find an English speaking attorney in that area ?
Thank You very much !
You should ask for some data about the case (Tribunale, number of enrollment, number of decision) from the the cousin.
Our parents are dual citizenship, Italy & USA. They raised us in the U.S. and later, retired in Italy. Our father passed in 11 and we transferred all our rights to money and property to our Mom to avoid getting taxed by Italy.
Our Mom is 87 and in her decline. She has asked us to bring her back to the USA to live out the rest of her years. She owns a home and bank account. I believe we need a General POA. Our concern is that one of us needs to stay in the U.S. with her while the other returns to Italy to sell the house, close all her accounts and transfer her bank account balance to a U.S. based bank account.
Her only income is U.S. social security retirement and French Social Security, passed over to her after the passing of my father. My father worked in France after WWII long enough to qualify for France’s SS.
Our next move is to fly to Italy, find an attorney and create the necessary documentation to allow us to take care of anything which may arise. Our mother will be permanently returning to U.S. on the tail end of the trip. At some point, we will return to get the property on the market and close all accounts so that when we leave, we will not be required to return to Italy to deal with any outstanding debts or taxation..
She lives in Pordenone so if you know any good, qualified lawyers, we would really appreciate it..
Hi George, you can contact me directly through the contact form. I am a lawyer based in Milan, and Pordenone is not very far away.
hi there, would be grateful for some general advice – i have two italian parents, both elderly, both need full time care. They both lived in England for many years and have property and money there but now reside in Italy. I need power of attorney to manage their affairs but am still unsure whether it is best to do this in Italy, or England, or do I need to do it in both countries.
any help gratefully welcomed
If they’re resident in Italy, then in Italy.
My husband passed away in april,2016. Him and I both signed for a small piece of property(no house on it), back in 1984. I received a copy of the property description, via e-mail from my sister-in-law. The property was given to us from his parents. Only his name is on it. My question is: Do I have to have my 3 children sign a power of attorney including me, to give the property to my nephew who resides in Italy.Thats what the family is informing me. I was told to submit a death certificate with an upper seal on it, and the POA, signed and notarized, here in new York. Do I need anything else, and is this info correct?
I don’t understand if you want to keep the property, or not.
My Aunt passed away last year and my brother and I are the only living relatives, apart from here husband. We both live in UK and born in Italy. We have been asked to sign a Procura speciale to give power of attorney to my uncle (through marriage ) and to renounce our inheritance. There is no will. We are unsure about this as my uncle says there is a lot of debt and he does not want this to be passed to us. He wants us to go to Italy and sign this in front of his notary before a year passes.
Please advise what we need to know and ask for before we sign? We don’t want to risk anything being passed to us debt wise. How can we ensure this and also, would we be able to ask for what the inheritance is?
as a matter of a fact, you cannot be sure if there are debts left from your aunt or not, if not after accepting the inheritance (and, after that, obviously, the debts would become yours). Unless, you hire a private detective to do some checks on public registries and see if the properties of your aunt are under mortgage or so.
Ciao Michele would you please advise me if a general power of attorney needs notary seal along with signatures on all pages. I just found out that my properties were sold by family members and suspect that they falsified the power of attorney by copying on the last page only my signatures from an old power of attorney that was drafted in the 70’s by me. Any advice would be helpful as the power of attorney that they used is not stamped by notary from the US on any page but the last. Thank you.
That is very suspect indeed.
I suggest that, if you’re sure that the document is a fake, you should issue a legal case in a tribunal.
Hello, and thanks in advance for your help. My niece is purchasing with her father a small home in Palmoli Italy. Both are US Citizens. They were in Italy earlier in the month, and have a contract of sale, and have put a down a down payment. Her father is returning to Italy ALONE, for the “close” and he needs a Power of Attorney for Chelsea, so he can sign the contracts/documents in her place. My niece is in Maryland. Are these the correct steps:
1. Have a Power of Attorney written (in English) by a local Maryland attorney that is legal in the state of Maryland.
2. Have this POA translated into Italian, using a translation service.
3. Have both the English and Italian translation notarized by a local USA notary.
4. Obtain an Apostille to authenticate the documents by going to the Italian Consulate, or the Italian Embassy, or use an Apostille service.
My thought is that the notary will not necessarily want to notarize the Italian translation because they don’t know what it says.
I have a grandfather that is Italian, and my mom is concerned that there may be things that arise after his passing that my lead to contention within the family. I didn’t realize that in Italy on a public notary can legalize a power of attorney, rather than a lawyer and a notary in other countries. I’ll be sure my mother is aware of this Italian law.
You are right Tomas. In Italy only a notary public can legalize a power of attorney. This is sometimes painful. Personally, I am a licenced lawyer both in Italy and in the UK, so I change my hat depending on the case.
My father who lives in Canada is one of 6 children of which only 4 are left including himself. One aunt has lived and managed the family home for over 20 years with assistance from my father. The house is now vacant and for sale. My father and my deceased uncle’s family have not given his procura to my aunt while my other 2 aunts have given their procura to my aunt. Is my father entitled to a share if the property is sold and does my aunt require his procura to do so? Thank you kindly.
just want to be sure I’ve understood: is “family home” meant as your grandfather home?
where to make dichiarazione in Milan for bring my husband.
I am Sri Lankan and my Husband is Indian, i went to comuna and they attested my sogorno, medical card and they gave me nulla osta, but they didn’t give me dichiarazione to bring my husband,
Italian Embassy in New Delhi India asking that one too but comuna ppl not putting ”Marco dapolo ” on dichiarazione in Milan.
I don’t know any Lawyer or any person who can help me,
Please Help. Thanks
you should ask for “ricongiungimento familiare” to Prefettura (not Comune).
it can take up to 180 days to get the nulla osta for ricongiungimento familiare.
I am based in Milan
Good morning Setefano,I like to ask you for some advice my father is from Sicily but lives in England now.
He has a house we lived in while growing growing up and now is empty with land and money in the post office. His not well to travel to Italy and is worried he will loose quite lots without a will.Could you adventure what to do.thank you Calogera Biron
I (I am 77 years old) have sent my cousin with a special power of attorney (with notary and apostile) to Italy with my US checking account information to receive my share of sale of property. I am the only survivor child of my father’s property. I had a brother and sister and their families would receive the other two thirds – but they are not interested in sending a POA as their shares would be divided into small amounts (about $2,000 each and they don’t need the money anyway). At the City Hall, my cousin was told that everyone had to send a POA and my share was not released. IS THIS LEGAL? I have much more info.
Hello, my father had a procura Generale made up For his home in Italy. He has passed away and we Inherited the home. A new procura generale was done with the 4 children so that we can sell the home we live in the US. Once we received a buyer for the home it came to light that a portion of the property was bought therefore our spouses have right to that portion And we were told that another procura with their names needed to be done. Is that also a procura Generale or procura speciale?
I am a US citizen whose Aunt left a small inheritance to me in Italy. I have been advised by my cousin who is handling the estate that I need to sign a Power of Attorney for her to claim my inheritance for me if I am not there in person. Would it be better for me to fly to Italy and incur less administration fees or go to the Italian Consulate here in the US to proceed with my claim? As well, the American dollar is strong at this time so I don’t know if I should convert Euro to dollars in Italy or the US.
What would you advise for the least amount of cost (disregarding flight) and to get the most for my euro to dollar exchange?
My father of dual nationality (English and Italian) had a stroke last year and has lost capacity (already certified by Italian notary) He has not appointed any power of attorney.
I owns property in Italy and is receiving Italian disability payments.
I wonder if getting deputy rights in the UK or the Italian equivalent is more advantageous or even if one has presidense over the other.
Ciao Stefano, I like your comments immensily. I live in Brooklyn, NY came to the US in 1962.
I sold property in Italy, and gave my cousin la Procura Speciale in order to sell. He did sell but never sent the money from the sale. Everything was done legally. What do I do now? Go to a lawyer that specializes in Criminal cases? I appreciate any help or referral you can give.
Grazie, Piervito Pinto, Brooklyn, New York
Will your procura generale template allow me to conduct things in my mothers interest ie: speak to and act on her behalf at her bank, municipal council, post office etc…?
My partner and I purchased 2 small properties in Cerami, Sicily in 2019. We had an agreement drawn up by the Notary in Cerami where both parties signed the documents. We live in Australia. We have since paid some monies (not all at this stage) to the owner of the properties. Then covid came along and we have put it on hold, but not sure how long we can hold off – in Australia we are currently unable to travel overseas.
We are wanting to finalise the payment of the properties otherwise we my lose them. We would like a dear friend of ours who lives in Cerami to look after the finalisation for us. I have paid for the download PoA document – should I be using Version 1. My partner and I will not be returning to Sicily until we are allowed to by our government. Look forward to your response.
Hello, I am Italian and I have been given power of attorney for the sale of the property of an English friend. Is all the preliminary work done to arrive to the sale months ahead of the Rogito included in the fee? How much is a fee for a trusted friend who is not a lawyer? Does the fee relates to just the appearance at the rogito and consequent deposit of the money into her account. The sale is dragging on and not sure if I should charge for the extra time it requires of me . Thank you
Hi Michele, We are planning on buying a house in Italy (actually we are waiting for the compromeso to be sent to us) , however we are dealing with a company which helped us on visiting apartments etc. this company is more a property service agencies but offers also purchase assistance, what would be the risk for us to give them POA for signing the deed of sale in our behalf, as we cannot go to Italy for the coming months… Thanks in advance