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Italy: Registration of Motor Vehicles

(Aug. 23, 2017) On July 24, 2017, new legislation on registration of motor vehicles entered into effect in Italy. (Legislative Decree No. 98 of May 29, 2017, Rationalization of the Management Processes of Data on the Circulation and Ownership of Cars, Motor Vehicles, and Trailers, for the Purpose of Issuing a Consolidated Text, According to Article 8, Paragraph 1, Letter (d), of Law No. 124 of August 7, 2015 (L. D. No. 98), GAZZETTA UFFICIALE (G.U.) (June 24, 2017) (in Italian); Law No. 124 of August 7, 2015, Delegation of Powers to the Government Concerning the Reorganization of Public Administration, G.U. website (in Italian).)

Prior to the new law, there were two documents needed for each vehicle, a certificate of ownership and a circulation certificate.  The circulation certificate allowed the vehicle to be driven on the roads. The new legislation establishes that effective July 1, 2018, the registration certificate will be the single document containing information on the circulation and ownership of cars, motor vehicles, and trailers. (L. D. No. 98, art. 1(1); Council Directive 1999/37/EC on the Registration Documents for Vehicles, art. 2(c), 1999 O.J. (L 138) 57, EUR-LEX (L. D. No. 98 implements the Directive in Italy).)  The legislation lists the specific information to be contained in the registration certificate, including any legal or judicial encumbrances on the vehicle affecting its ownership and possession.  (L. D. No. 98, arts. 1(2) & (3).)

The Ministry of Infrastructure and Transportation is the agency in charge of issuing registration certificates and of determining the validity of the certifications contained therein. (Id. art. 1(4).)  The Automobile Club of Italy retains its functions of providing data on the ownership and leasing of the vehicles.  (Id.)  

Procedure for the Issuance of the Documentation

Interested parties must submit an application for the issuance of the single document at the time of the first registration of a vehicle, its re-registration, or an update thereof resulting from the transfer of the vehicle; they must also provide any relevant documentation.  (Id. art. 2(1).)  Before April 30, 2018, the Ministry of the Economy and Finance jointly with the Ministry of Justice must approve the fee to be charged for obtaining the single document.  (Id. art. 2(2).)

Reports to Parliament

Within one year from the date of introduction of the single document, the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transportation must submit a report to the Italian Parliament on the results obtained during the previous year in connection with the issuance of the single permit, in particular the savings achieved during that period. (Id. art. 4(1).)  Within 24 months of the date of introduction of the single document, the Ministry of Infrastructure and Transportation must also define the modalities for the organization of the eventual single registry to be established at that Ministry to ensure a reduction in the management costs related to recording information on ownership and circulation of vehicles.  (Id. art. 4(2).)