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By means of Circular n.2805 dated 31 July 2017, the Ministry of Internal affairs has introduced important changes to the family clearance application process. These changes had become necessary to expedite and streamline a process that has proven to be extremely long, burdensome and inefficient, with waiting times of over 1 year.

First, the processing time for the issuance of the family clearance indicated in the law has been reduced from 180 to 90 days.

Secondly, starting from August 17th, the online system through which all immigration applications are filed will be implemented to allow the upload of the supporting documents at the time of application. It is expected that – within 0ctober 2017 – the system will be fully functional and the majority of the application process will be handled online. The originals of the documents uploaded in the system will however be required at the time of collecting the family clearance.

Last but not least, the circular indicates a uniform list of documents to which all Immigration Offices throughout Italy should refer when setting the documentary requirements.

The changes were introduced in an effort to streamline and reorganise the family reunion process, reducing processing time and setting uniform rules throughout the country.

It is to be noted though that Italian authorities are very slow in implementing new rules, therefore we do not expect significative changes in the near future.

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