Becoming a sole trader
A foreign investor who wants to go to Italy and set up a small business with low expenses may choose to become a sole trader. Any EU citizen is allowed to work as a sole trader in Italy after he registers with the local authorities. There are certain requirements for sole traders in Italy. You have to be a permanent resident and hold a residence certificate and then you can be authorized to work as a freelancer, self-employed in the field you choose or sole trader.
The document you need in order to work as a sole trader is a work and residence permit. According to the type of business you want to pursue in Italy, you must register with the appropriate organization like Trade Register or local tax office etc.
For certain types of activity, you will need to register for VAT. As a sole trader you will need certain certificates that prove your qualifications. If you start working without appropriate authorizations required by Italian law, you may be fined and the amount for these types of penalties is large. Apart from penalties the Italian authorities may confiscate your machinery and ban you from working in Italy for several years.
Obtaining legal advice
The sole trader is responsible for his debts whether they are personal or professional and can be declared bankrupt if he is not able to pay his dues. It is worth to be noted that it is vital to obtain legal advice before setting up any type of business in Italy. Professionals will advise you on the type of business which is more suitable for you.
Sole trader is a good option for foreign investors who want to spend less for registration and have a simple accountancy. However, if you won’t be able to pay your debts, the creditors will be allowed to take parts of your personal wealth even if it is in other country.