Italian study permit updates: conversion of the study permit to work permit can now be requested at any time during the year without waiting for the quotas set in the “decreto flussi”.

The residence permit issued for study, internship or training allows for limited work (up to 20 hours per week, up to 52 weeks, with an annual limit of 1,040 hours) and can be converted into a permit for subordinate (permesso di soggiorno per lavoro subordinato) or self-employment (permesso di soggiorno per lavoro autonomo) work, allowing to engage in full time work activities.

When can I apply for the conversion of the study permit to work permit?

Further to the publication of the so-called “decreto Cutro” (DL 20 March No. 23, converted into Law No. 50 on 5 May 2023) it is no longer necessary to have to apply for a “quota” from the annual “decreto flussi” (flow decree) for the conversion. As a consequence valid study permits can now be converted at any time during the year without numerical limits.

To request the conversion of a residence permit issued for study, internship or training, the permit must be valid and not expired (however the Council of State has interpreted this requirement flexibly, and under certain conditions, a delay in submitting the conversion application does not cause the rejection of the application – judgment of 11 November 2021)

The conversion can be requested even before the completing the study program or even if the applicant has not graduated in Italy. However, for permits issued for training courses or internships in Italy, conversion is only possible after the completion of the training or internship program.

How to apply for the conversion of the study permit to work permit?

If applying for the conversion from study to subordinate work, the applicant must have a job offer for subordinate work. The proposed working hours must exceed 20 hours per week.

For conversion from study to autonomous work, the applicant must present documentation related to the planned activity and the financial availability needed for it (income higher than the minimum level required by law for exemption from health expenses, i.e., €8,500).

To apply for conversion, the study permit holder must

  • access (using SPID) and submit the application electronically through the Ministry of the Interior’s portal.
  • In most of the cases, the applicant will be required to submit the housing feasibility certificate.
  • The Immigration Desk (Sportello Unico per l’Immigrazione) of the province where the foreign student resides will verify and evaluate the application and eventually issue an appointment
  • at the appointment, the student will submit the documents and (in case of subordinate work) sign the contract of stay with the employer.
  • Additionally, the foreign individual will be provided with a kit for the application of the residence permit for work

Depending on the specific type of conversion, the forms to be used are:

  • model VA (for subordinate work)
  • model Z (for self-employment work)
  • model V2 (subordinate work for foreign nationals who turned 18 or have graduated in Italy)
  • model Z2 (self employment work for foreign nationals who turned 18 or have graduated in Italy)

What can I do if I need more time for job searching in Italy?

If you hold an accredited an Italian undergraduate/graduate degree, Ph.D., university “master”, first/second level academic degree, Higher Technical Institute diploma, you can register as unemployed and apply for a permit for the purpose of job searching or entrepreneurship (Permesso di soggiorno per ricerca lavoro o imprenditorialita‘ degli studenti). This kind of permit allows students to legally live in Italy after their graduation while searching for a job/start a business for max 1 year.