get dual citizenship blog
English to Italian Legal Translation Blog
Over the past few weeks I have been talking with some very interesting professionals about Italian dual citizenship. But there are several reasons why someone would settle in Italy, and this is the realm of relocation and global mobility experts such as Damien O’ Farrell. Read on this fascinating interview!
1) Can you introduce yourself?
I’m Damien O’Farrell, a global mobility expert and expat coach. I have been living in Italy for 30+ years and I work with people who are serious about staying in Italy, to help them live here successfully, long-term.
2) Why work with a global mobility expert?
Well, experts help you save time through their expertise and provide a clear guide as to how to move forward, based on your specific situation and goals. And this is true for corporate as well as individual clients.
You see, the Internet has given people the false impression that they can do everything themselves. While this is true for finding general information about broad topics, when you’re considering case-specific topics such as immigration, citizenship, divorce, taxes…this is no longer true.
The information you may get online, though valuable, may be 1) out of sequence, 2) not case-specific, 3) out of date, 4) incomplete.
I remember a case of a divorced woman, who came to Italy with 4 children, because she had read somewhere on the Internet that Italy would give her a Visa. She was literally crying on the phone when I told her this was not possible, and she eventually had to go back.
That’s where a professional’s expertise is needed.
Also, an expert is pragmatic, and can help you see incongruencies and balance expectations with reality. And they can help you get a sense of perspective over the whole process.
Let’s say you want to live in a very coveted area in Italy, but don’t realize you need a lot more money than you currently have.
Or, you have a special needs child and decide to move to an Italian region where the medical care you need is not adequate (this was a real case, and the child in question started regressing).
3) How did you become a relocation expert?
I started out with general relocation cases, and over time I moved on to a more tailored and niche service, with more handholding if you will.
I work with c-suite clients, who come to Italy as part of an inter-company transfer, as well as with individuals (elective residency visa applicants, Italian dual citizenship applicants and individuals looking to spend a sabbatical in Italy).
My clients are people who can successfully settle in Italy long-term. I don’t provide any job-finding services.
4) Any client stories you remember?
One comes to mind, in particular, as an example of the power of focus, determination and patience.
There was this lady from the US, in her early 30s, with no passive income, no Italian citizenship, who simply wanted to live in Italy. I guided her in finding a job with a company in the US for which she could then work from Italy, she then learnt Italian and after 5 years she was able to finally settle in Italy and live here for life.
5) Any pro tips?
You need to be pragmatic. You need to learn and know the contemporary culture, because what worked in the 80s or 90s doesn’t cut it anymore.
Many people come to Italy thinking that they’ll make a living teaching some English. While this may have been true in the past, the Internet has now changed everything. To stay in Italy long-term you need to think about unlocked work possibilities (childcare, elder care, solar panels…), not flash cash. Because that is not enough to survive. If you want a premium salary, you need specific, top-level skills. Therefore, you may need to upskill or reskill.
And above all, start with the end in mind. What will you need, based on what you’ll do? Will you come to Italy and work, or will you be retired? It’s a totally different scenario. And your experience of Italy will be vastly different too.
A retired American couple with a large passive income can definitely come and live in beautiful, dreamy Spoleto. But if you move to Italy with a young family, to live and work in Rome…well, that’s a different story.
See, the image that is often marketed to foreigners is the romanticized one of Italian dolce vita. Very little or no content at all is aimed at the foreigners who want to move to Italy to work or to start a business. While it can be fun to read about why you should not drink a cappuccino in the afternoon this type of content does not ultimately help you in moving the needle with regards to living and thriving in Italy long term.
You have to keep up-to-date based on what you want. Start by understanding what you’re looking for and then determine how you are going to achieve that through focused and determined action.
Finally, plan. The more you plan, the better your outcome will be. If you don’t plan well, you’ll be very precarious when you’re older (if you’re interested in this, read on Damien’s Medium post about taking care of your future as a foreigner in Italy).
6) Where can we find you?
Here’s my website https://damienofarrell.com/
My LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/damienofarrell/
And of course, subscribe to my newsletter https://www.linkedin.com/newsletters/ultimate-italy-6873942195355820032/
Need help with your citizenship application? Just drop a line!
I'm Natalia Bertelli, an English/Spanish to Italian legal translator. Since 2008 I have been working on contracts, judicial deeds, certificates, corporate translations for foreign clients who want to do business in Italy, get a dual citizenship or simply settle in my beautiful country.