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Getting a student visa while already in Italy

Travel Forums Europe Getting a student visa while already in Italy

1. Posted by Marieshett (Budding Member 2 posts) 38w Star this if you like it!

Hi,

After graduating from college I decided to come to Italy for three months and work. What I didn't expect was to fall in love with the country as much as I am. I have only been here for three weeks but would like to stay for longer and am regretting not applying for a student visa. I'm taking classes at a local language school (that people have used for visas in the past) and am wondering if it's at all possible to get a student visa while already in Italy? I'm an American so I don't know how easy it is-but I'm willing to put in the effort if the opportunity is at all possible.

Thanks in advance for any help!

Marie

[ Edit: Edited on 29-Sep-2017, at 07:57 by Marieshett ]

2. Posted by leics2 (Respected Member 294 posts) 38w 1 Star this if you like it!

If you have been working while you are in Italy then I'm afraid you have already broken the law.

Whilst US citizens do not need a visa to enter the Schengen Zone (or any one of the 26 countries which make up that zone) for a maximum of 90 days in every 180 as a visitor, for business purposes or to study they are not allowed to work in any of those countries unless they have the appropriate work visa. This is, of course, exactly the same as in the USA: if visitors wish to work or study they need the appropriate visa.

There are no extensions to the 90-in-180 day Schengen visa waiver. If you wish to stay longer (anywhere in the Schengen Zone, not just Italy) you will need to apply for either a work visa or a student visa.

As you are a US citizen it is my understanding that you need to apply through the Italian Embassy in the USA for either type of visa. This official page will guide you through the process:

http://www.ambwashingtondc.esteri.it/ambasciata_washington/en/visti

Please do not be tempted to overstay in the Schengen Zone. Your entry date was noted on the system which is shared between all 26 countries and any overstay, by land sea or air, will be known. Any overstay (just like illegal working) can result in a fine and/or deportation ....and will certainly make it much more difficult to re-enter any Schengen country or to get any sort of Schengen visa.

Whilst I absolutely understand how you have fallen in love with Italy I would urge you to follow the correct procedures. For now I'd advise you to enjoy your stay, don't even think about working, but do explore arrangements for future study..... and then return to the US to get your student visa for Italy.

[ Edit: Edited on 29-Sep-2017, at 12:23 by leics2 ]

3. Posted by Marieshett (Budding Member 2 posts) 38w Star this if you like it!

I am working as an au pair, which is legal to do for 90 days :)

Thank you for your informative response though, I really appreciate it!

Have a nice day!

4. Posted by leics2 (Respected Member 294 posts) 38w 1 Star this if you like it!

> I am working as an au pair, which is legal to do for 90 days

I'm afraid it's not that straightforward. Receiving any payment for being an au pair means working...and working is illegal under the 90-in-180 day visa waiver.

If you are staying with a family, within 48 hours of your arrival you & your host family should have made a declaration (dichiarazione di ospitalità) at the local police station:

https://ec.europa.eu/home-affairs/sites/homeaffairs/files/e-library/documents/policies/borders-and-visas/visa-policy/proof_of_sponsorship_and-or_private_accommodation_italy.pdf

https://www.aupairworld.com/en/au_pair_program/italy/au_pair/visa/non_eu

and your host family is legally responsible for ensuring you return to the US on or before the 90 day period is up.

Here's another official site which will be useful:

http://vistoperitalia.esteri.it/home/en#BMQuestionario