SINGLE AND UNIVERSAL CHILD ALLOWANCE 2021/2022
The universal child benefit 2021 will come into effect on 1 January 2022 but an initial transitional phase will start on 1 July 2021. The first to benefit from the 2021 child benefit from 1 July will be the unemployed and self-employed, i.e. those who are not currently receiving child benefit. The above-mentioned categories will therefore already be able to benefit from the financial aid, for their minor children only.
The transitional measure, which will last until 31 December 2021, provides for a single allowance of up to €1,056 per family unit and €674 per child. In the meantime, during this transitional phase, the current tax deductions will continue to be in force, to be replaced by the universal single allowance in January 2022.
SINGLE CHILD ALLOWANCE 2021: WHAT IS IT?
The single and universal child allowance 2021 is an economic support measure for families introduced by Law no. 46 of 1 April 2021, published in the Official Gazette no. 82 of 06-04-2021. It is defined as ‘single’ because it unifies and replaces a number of family support measures, and ‘universal’ because it will be progressively attributed to all families with dependent children.
Specifically, the benefit will replace the following measures, which will be phased out:
- allowance for families with at least three minor children;
- childbirth allowance
- birth bonus;
- birth support fund;
- tax deductions provided for by Article 12, paragraphs 1(c) and 1-bis of Presidential Decree no. 917 of 22 December 1986;
- household allowance and family allowances.
In practice, the single allowance will allow the gradual overcoming of these aids and will make them converge in a unitary measure, however, for the measure to become operational, it will be necessary to wait for the implementing decrees that will regulate in detail amounts, thresholds and disbursement modalities. The management of the benefit will most likely be entrusted to INPS.
CHILD ALLOWANCE: HOW IT WORKS
The single child allowance is paid in the form of a tax credit or a monthly sum of money. The benefit is granted for each dependent child from the seventh month of pregnancy until the age of 21. The age limit does not apply to disabled children.
The amount is variable and is determined according to the ISEE of the applicant household and the age of the dependent children. Actually, the benefit granted for children of age is lower than that granted for minors.
The economic aid is granted in equal measure to the parents or, in their absence, to the person with parental responsibility. Separated or divorced parents are also eligible. In the case of separation, annulment, dissolution or cessation of the civil effects of marriage, in the absence of an agreement, the benefit is assigned to the parent with custody. However, in the case of joint or shared custody, in the absence of an agreement it is divided equally between the parents.
WHO IS ENTITLED TO IT
The 2021 child benefit is available to all families with dependent children.
To apply for the financial contribution for dependent children, you must meet the following general requirements:
- be an Italian citizen or a citizen of a European Union Member State, or a family member of such a citizen, who has the right of residence or the right of permanent residence, or be a citizen of a non-EU Member State in possession of an EU long-term residence permit or a residence permit for work or research purposes for at least one year;
- being subject to the payment of the income tax in Italy;
- residence and domicile with dependent children in Italy for the entire duration of the benefit;
- having been or being resident in Italy for at least two years, even if not continuous, or having an open-ended or fixed-term employment contract of at least two years.
In addition, in the case of children who have reached the age of majority, the universal single allowance is granted only if the child who has reached the age of majority meets one of the following conditions:
- attends a school or vocational training course;
- attends a university degree course;
- he/she carries out an apprenticeship or limited work activity with a total income lower than a certain annual amount which will be indicated in the implementing decrees;
- is registered as unemployed and looking for work at a job centre or employment agency;
- performs universal community service.
SINGLE CHILD ALLOWANCE AMOUNT
The amount of the single child allowance should be a maximum of €250 per month, but the exact amount will be defined by the forthcoming implementing decree.
CALCULATION AND BONUSES
For the 2021 child benefit, the amount is calculated on the basis of the economic condition of the household, as identified by the ISEE. In addition, in calculating the benefit, the age of dependent children, any disability condition of the children and other factors affecting the economic contribution are also taken into account.
The regulations concerning the benefit provide for the following variations in the amounts:
- increases from the third child onwards;
- reduction for each child up to 21 years of age;
- increased amount for mothers under 21;
- an increase of not less than 30% and not more than 50% for each disabled child, fixed according to the disability condition. The allowance is granted without increase for disabled children even after their 21st birthday, as long as they are still dependent.
COMPATIBILITY WITH OTHER STATE AID
The universal child allowance is compatible with the Citizen’s Income and also with the use of any other cash measures for dependent children made available by the regions, autonomous provinces of Trento and Bolzano, and local authorities. To find out about other aids available and which may be combined with the benefit, visit this page.
INPS SINGLE CHILD ALLOWANCE APPLICATION: HOW TO APPLY FOR IT
At the moment, it is not yet possible to apply for the 2021 child allowance; we are waiting for the implementing decrees and INPS circulars that should regulate the application and payment of the economic aid to support families with dependent children.
Probably, as for other benefits, the application will be telematic and must be submitted to INPS, through the Institute’s web portal, using the special service INPS single child allowance.
In this case you will need one of the following credentials to access the portal:
- INPS PIN;
- Level 2 SPID identity (at least);
- Electronic Identity Card 3.0 (EIC);
- National Card of Services (NCS).
In addition, if the application methods used for other benefits are maintained, as an alternative to the online application, it will be possible to apply for the single allowance through the INPS integrated contact centre or the free services offered by patronage bodies.
As regards the method of payment of child benefit, the benefit is paid to the parents or to the person exercising parental responsibility. In the case of children of age, it may be paid directly to the child, at his or her request, in order to promote his or her autonomy.
We would like to point out that the above information is based on the information currently in our possession. It will be necessary to wait for the implementing decrees and explanatory circulars, which may contain changes with respect to this information.
UPDATES ON 8 JUNE 2021
Finally, we would like to point out that, pending the adoption of the implementing decrees of the delegated law concerning the single family allowance (Law no. 46/2021), Decree-Law no. 79/2021, published in G.U. no. 135 of 8 June 2021, contains “Urgent measures concerning temporary child allowance”. In particular, the Decree-Law, with reference to the period from 1 July to 31 December 2021, regulated and introduced:
- Temporary allowance (‘bridging’ allowance) for families with minor children who are not entitled to existing family allowances (ANF);
- The reinforcement of the existing family allowances by increasing their amounts. Article 5 of Decree-Law no. 79/2021 provides that, as of 1 July 2021 and until 31 December 2021, the monthly amounts in force, higher than zero and received by those entitled, relating to the household allowance referred to in Article 2 of Decree-Law no. 69/1988, are increased of € 37.5 per child, for households with up to two children; and of € 55 per child, for households with at least three children.
LDP Payroll remains at your disposal for any further clarifications.