The protection of family unity is an important human right. If you were separated from your family, you can apply for family reunification. It is a procedure that allows you to bring your family members to Italy in a legal, safe way.
➡️ Who can help you in the family reunification process?
If you need assistance in submitting or following up on your family reunification request, please contact our partner ARCI at the Helpline for refugees +39 800 905 570 or +39 3511376335 for Lycamobile users/Whatsapp, e-mail [email protected].
➡️ Who is eligible for family reunification?
Beneficiaries of international protection (refugees and beneficiaries of subsidiary protection) are entitled to apply for family reunification with the following family members:
- Spouse (husband or wife) who is not legally separated and not less than eighteen years old, or civilly united partner (in Italy or abroad), who is a foreigner and not resident in Italy;
- Children who are natural minors, adopted, fostered, subject to guardianship, including of the spouse or born out of wedlock, not married, provided that the other parent, if any, has given his or her consent;
- Dependent children aged 18 or over who, for valid reasons, cannot provide for their own essential needs and are totally disabled;
- Dependent parents up to the age of 65, if they have no other children in their country of origin or provenance;
- Dependent parents aged 65 or over, if they have other children but are unable to support them for serious and documented health reasons.
If you are under the age of 18 and you are alone, separated from your parents or other family members who are caring for you, and you have been recognised as a refugee in Italy, you have the right to be reunited with your parents regardless of their age or status.
If you are an asylum-seeker in Italy, you may not apply for family reunification until you have been granted legal status to stay in Italy.
Important: If your family members are currently inside the European Union you should not wait until you are granted legal status in Italy before applying to reunify with them. You should apply to reunify with your family according to the Dublin Regulation so that your applications for asylum are considered together, in the same country.
➡️ How to apply for family reunification?
The procedure involves two steps: (i) the request for the Nulla Osta at the Sportello Unico Immigrazione (SUI) of the competent Prefecture and then (ii) the request for a visa at the Italian representation abroad.
To apply for the Nulla Osta, you must:
- Obtain a SPID digital identity (you can do this at the counters of the Italian Post Office);
- Purchase a 16.00 euro revenue stamp (marca da bollo);
- Use your SPID identity to access the official website of the Italian authorities to fill in the forms online and enter the number of the tax stamp in your possession;
Then, you will be summoned by the SUI of your place of residence and you will have to bring the following documents:
- The original of the revenue stamp whose details have been indicated in the application. Another €16.00 revenue stamp to be affixed to the Nulla Osta;
- Your residence permit and a photocopy;
- A photocopy of the documents of the family members to be reunited (if available).
For the verification of the family relationship, you may bring the cumulative certificate of family status and residence (also in the form of self-certification).
Once you have obtained the Nulla Osta, you must send the original to your family member to be reunited with you. Your family member must then present him/herself and the Nulla Osta at the competent Italian diplomatic representation where they live (or close to where they live) to request the visa. In the meantime, the SUI sends electronically the Nulla Osta to the Italian Diplomatic Representation Once the visa is issued, your family member is able to travel to Italy.
In the meantime, you will also receive a written communication by the SUI, with their contact number. In fact, within 8 days since your arrival in Italy, you should approach the SUI and ask for a meeting to start the procedure for the issuance of a residence permit for your family member.
➡️ Further information on family reunification
Further information regarding family reunification procedure can be found here:
Ricongiungimento website developed by UNHCR and Caritas Italiana (in the context of the project Family First)
If you are not in a position to cover travel costs, our office might be able to purchase air travel through an agreement with Miles 4 Migrants. The request can be submitted to our office after the visa has been issued via our partner ARCI (Helpline for refugees 800 905 570 or +39 3511376335 for Lycamobile users/Whatsapp, e-mail [email protected]).