Understanding Child Benefits in Italy

Relocating to Italy brings many new experiences and adjustments, particularly for families. Understanding Italy’s approach to social security and specific family benefits, such as child allowances, is crucial. This guide provides a thorough overview of child benefits in Italy, including eligibility, application processes, and other pertinent parental supports.

Social Security System in Italy

In Italy, the social security system is comprehensive, covering healthcare, pensions, and child benefits. Managed by the Instituto Nazionale Previdenza Sociale (INPS), this system is funded by contributions from both employers and employees, including self-employed and expatriate residents. In 2019, Italy allocated 1.1% of its GDP to child benefits, which is below the EU average of 2.3%.

Types of Child Benefits in Italy

As of 2022, Italy offers a primary child benefit known as the Single and Universal Allowance for Dependent Children. This replaced several previous benefits to simplify the support system for families with children under the age of 21, as well as those caring for children with disabilities.

Single and Universal Allowance for Dependent Children


This benefit is a means-tested financial support based on the ISEE (Indicatore della Situazione Economica Equivalente), which assesses a family’s economic situation to determine the amount of support they are eligible for.


  • All parents with dependent children, whether citizens, permanent residents, or holders of various residence permits.
  • Applicable from the seventh month of pregnancy.
  • In cases of legal separation or divorce, only the primary caregiver is eligible to apply.
  • Grandparents and other guardians caring for dependent children may also apply.
  • Youth between ages 18-21, if they meet certain educational, employment, or service criteria.

Benefit Amount

The allowance varies typically from €50 to €175 per child per month, increasing with the number of dependent children. Additional supplements may be provided for families with disabled children or those requiring special in-home care.

Application Process

Applications for the Single and Universal Allowance can be submitted electronically via the INPS website, by phone, or through authorized centers. Required documentation typically includes identification of all household members, proof of residence, and bank details for direct deposit of benefits.

Additional Support for Parents in Italy

Italy offers various forms of support to parents, including generous maternity and paternity leave policies, and financial assistance for educational expenses through school vouchers and scholarships.

Childcare Options in Italy

Italian parents can choose from a variety of childcare services, ranging from public nurseries and preschools to private nannies and summer camps. Financial assistance to offset the costs of childcare is primarily provided through the kindergarten bonus.

Useful Resources

This guide aims to assist families moving to or living in Italy to navigate the landscape of child benefits efficiently. With this knowledge, expatriates can better prepare for the financial aspects of parenting in Italy.

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