FAQ – Frequently Asked Questions

General questions

The person should always be considered with great respect, individually and when a union is formed, whatever the chosen model is. The life of a couple has changed and continues to change profoundly. If it works it’s because it’s a source of mutual satisfaction. If it fails to the pain of separation, multiple practical aspects are added up that must be considered and treated with adequate and analytical regard.

Each case is a case in point. First, you should know your rights and real possibilities by analyzing them on a case-by-case basis and studying the management of them. As well as the duties that arise from the end of a relationship.

Separation consists of an easing of the marital bond: the obligation to cohabitation is not granted, but the duty of fidelity (albeit understood in a broad sense as “respect” of the other spouse) and material assistance remains. Divorce, on the other hand, consists of the final dissolution of the marriage bond.

Of course, we work with customers all over Italy.

Yes. You can make an appointment using our contacts.

Of course, once you have been appointed, if you need legal advice or don’t have a chance to come to the firm, we can hear each other by phone or via Skype.

However, keep in mind that, in the absence of an initial meeting at our offices in Rome or Milan,we do not provide legal advice.

№. After a first meeting at our headquarters in Rome or Milan,we will have the opportunity to evaluate a targeted quote with respect to your needs.

The relationship between client and lawyer requires trust and sharing strategies and objectives. It is sometimes possible that the harmony is lost for a variety of reasons and therefore it is necessary to consider the possibility of supporting or replacing another law firm in the defense of one’s own interests.

The answer to the question may not be yes or no, but rather that we are willing to evaluate on a case-by-case basis after an initial meeting at our offices in Rome or Milan.

It is really difficult if not impossible to determine the necessary fee for a trial or extrajudicial process. Concrete situations, the type of lawsuit and the actors involved can have a significant influence on this assessment.

We recommend a first contact to have a preliminary opinion, telling us during the appointment what documents should be brought or sent before the meeting, so that you already have part of the elements on which our opinion will be based.

Assisted negotiation

Assisted negotiation makes it possible to separate or divorce in a short time, without even going to court once.

Spouses who wish to proceed swiftly and who do not wish to appear before a judge can use the assisted negotiation process by directing themselves to the lawyer.

How do I proceed?

Assisted negotiation involves the assistance of two lawyers, one per spouse, who will be responsible for the drafting of the agreement between the parties and all subsequent administrative tasks:

  1. In the event that there are no children, the agreement reached is subject to the scrutiny of the Prosecutor of the Republic at the competent Tribunal, which issues the clearance;
  2. When there are children who are minors or under the age of 18 who are not economically self-sufficient, the Prosecutor of the Republic authorizes the agreement, only if it is in the interests of the children;
  1. Once the lawyer, of one of the parties, has been cleared or cleared, he sends the agreement, to the Civil State Officer of the relevant municipality, for the subsequent administrative operations.

The release of the clearance or authorization to proceed with separation or divorce can take place within a few days.

Separation or divorce is effective from the day the lawyer signed the agreement in the firm.

Usually from a minimum of 1 month to a maximum of 3 months. In our experience, agreement can be reached within a few weeks.

After six months of signing the assisted negotiation, it will be possible to proceed with the divorce.

Assisted negotiation greatly reduces the timeframe for consensual separation proceedings and allows spouses to complete the processof separation or divorce by going only to the lawyer’s office, without the stress of appearing before a judge.

Parties may commit to making real estate transfers, either between spouses or to their children, taking advantage of the full tax exemption provided by law.

No, the assistance of two lawyers, one per spouse, is mandatory.

In that case, proceedings will be carried out for separation or judicial divorce.

Consensual separation

Consensual separation is the instrument by which the spouses, by mutual agreement, decide to separate.

It is a procedure that is used when spouses agree both in requesting separation and on the issues of:

  • custody and habitual home of children
  • the right to visit the parent with whom the children do not live
  • assignment of the marital home
  • contribution to childcare
  • contribution to the maintenance of the economically weaker spouse
  • other possible economic and capital issues of the family.

The application is appealed by both spouses.
The President of the Court sets by decree the day of the date of the parties’ appearance for the attempt at conciliation.
At the subpoena, the President must hear the spouses seeking conciliation.
If the Latter succeeds, the President will draw up the conciliation report; if it fails, it verbalizes the spouses’ willingness to separate and the conditions relating to spouses and offspring.
After the presidential phase is over, the court decides on approval in the council chamber. Once the Public Prosecutor’s Opinion has been obtained, if it considers the conditions agreed by the spouses to be legitimate and in accordance with the interests of the children, it issues the decree of approval, which has the effectiveness of an executive title and must be noted at the bottom of the act of marriage by the civil officer.

Judicial separation

Judicial separation is a procedure by which only one of the spouses, or each of them with their own self-recourse, asks the Court to issue a separation judgment regulating their relations, since the cohabitation between them has ceased.
The judicial separation differs from the consensual one because in the latter the spouses agree both in requesting separation from the Court, and on how to regulate their relationships about custody of children, the allocation of marital housing and economic and property issues.

It is a procedure to regulate separation reports:

  • charge
  • custody of children
  • the habitual home of the children
  • the right to visit the parent with whom the children do not live
  • assignment of the marital home
  • contribution to childcare
  • contribution to the maintenance of the economically weaker spouse.

In the event that the family crisis is due to conduct contrary to the duties arising from marriage by one of the spouses, the court, if asked, can declare in the judgment to whom the separation is charged. The pronouncement of charge has the effects of a capital and economic order.

In particular, to the spouse who is declared responsible for the separation:

  • he cannot be given maintenance allowance, but if the conditions are right to eat, he can only be granted the right to food;
  • his successor rights to the other spouse’s estate are limited.

The application for separation is appealed which must contain the presentation of the facts on which the application is based, the declaration of the existence of offspring and the tax returns of the last 3 years of the two spouses must be attached.
The President of the Court accepts the appeal and sets by decree the date of the subpoena hearing of the spouses before him, the deadline for the notification of the appeal by the spouse who promoted it and the decree to the agreed spouse, and the deadline by which the defendant spouse can file the defensive memory and documents.

Presidential phase

The subpoena hearing takes place before the President of the Court and the spouses must appear obligatory and personally with the assistance of their lawyers. If both spouses appear at the hearing, the President attempts conciliation by trying to get the parties to desist from separating: if they agree and reconcile, the minutes are drawn up and the case is extinguished.

Provisional measures

If conciliation fails, the President or her orders give the temporary and urgent measures which he considers appropriate in the interests of the children (reliance) and the spouses (housing allocation and maintenance of the spouse). Appoints the investigating judge, sets the day on which the hearing will be held before the same investigating judge, and sets the deadline by which the agreed spouse must set himself if he has not already done so by attending the subpoena hearing.

Merit phase before the Instructor Judge

The second phase takes place before the Instructor Judge and is similar to an ordinary trial with the difference that the judge cannot attempt reconciliation again and may take on new evidence relating to the offspring.
The judgment ends with a separation judgment issued by the Tribunal.


Yes, separation consists of an easing of the marital bond: the obligation to cohabitation is not granted, but the duty of fidelity (albeit understood in a broad sense as “respect” of the other spouse) and material assistance remains.

Divorce, on the other hand, consists of the final dissolution of the marriage bond.

Divorce may be requested by either spouse or one spouse in conflict with the other (judicial divorce).

In addition to the impossibility of maintaining or rebuilding spiritual and material communion between spouses, there must be at least one of the mandatory conditions provided by the Divorce Act (6 months or 1 year).

In court, the divorce application must be submitted to the relevant Court with the assistance of a lawyer. If the divorce is judicial (i.e. in litigation), the application may be submitted by only one spouse. If both spouses agree, the application can be joint.
The divorce application may be filed when there is one of the cases required by the Divorce Act and in any case assumes the impossibility of maintaining or reconstituting spiritual or material communion between spouses.
The divorce application must be filed:

  • spouses’ tax returns for the last 3 years
  • excerpt for summary of the act of marriage
  • Family and residence status certificate
  • in the case where the precondition of divorce is separation, a genuine copy of the final order of the separation procedure (decree of homologous or judgment).

Presidential phase

The President of the Court sets by decree the date of the subpoena hearing of the spouses before him, the date by which the appeal and the decree must be communicated to the other spouse, and the date by which any memory of the constitution and response of the other spouse must be filed in the Court. At the subpoena he tries to reconcile parties. If the conciliation fails, it designates the Instructor Judge and sets the date of the new source hearing to the latter.
It may issue an order containing provisional and urgent measures.

Merit phase before the Instructor Judge

The Instructor Judge will, if necessary, initiate an investigation to determine the amount of the maintenance allowance and the process continues along the lines of an ordinary civil trial.
The judgment ends with a judgment that can be appealed.
Divorce terms can be changed or revoked.

The President of the Tribunal sets by decree the date of the hearing of the spouses before the Court in the council chamber.

The Court tries to reconcile parts during the subpoena hearing. If conciliation fails, the Court will issue the divorce judgment in the council chamber.

Divorce terms can be changed or revoked.

De facto couples and civil unions

Couples are in fact made up of two people who decide to live together without marrying.

The “de facto couple” is the term by which the couple is referred to as two subjects romantically linked, of the same sex or not, but who have chosen not to formalize their relationship with a marriage or civil union.
Cohabitants can register with the registry to obtain family status and sign cohabitation contracts.

The Civil Union is the term by which the Italian legal institution of public law is indicated, involving the legal recognition of the same-sex couple, aimed at establishing reciprocal rights and duties. This institution extends to same-sex couples a large part of the rights and duties provided for marriage, affecting the marital status of the person.

The rights and duties of the Fact Couples and civil unions do not:

  • Loyalty
  • Maintenance
  • Inheritance and communion of goods
  • Reversibility
  • Protection of real estate
  • Family business

The rights that de facto couples have

  • Home ownership
  • Mistreatment in the family
  • Custody of children
  • Damage compensation
  • Violation of family obligations
  • Non-EU nationals and residence permits

And more specifically:

  • the opportunity to visit the partner in prison;
  • the possibility of visit, assistance, access to the partner’s personal information in case of illness or hospitalization;
  • the possibility for each member of the couple to designate the other as a legitimate representative with full powers in the event of illness or death; the right of the surviving cohabitant to continue living in the house for a period of no more than 5 years even after the death of the partner who was the owner of the property;
  • the possibility of appointing the cohabitant as a guardian, curator or support administrator, if the partner is declared a member, incapacitated or beneficiary of the support administration;
  • the right to damages in the event of the death of the de facto cohabitant resulting from the unlawful conduct of a third party;
  • the right to participate in the management and profits of the partner’s family business;
  • the right of the cohabitant – established by the court in the event of the termination of de facto cohabitation – to receive the maintenance, if he is in need and is unable to provide for his own maintenance. The amount of the allowance is determined in proportion to the duration of the

Infidelity and damage compensation

If the spouse has violated the obligations of marriage (e.g. the obligation of fidelity, the obligation to cohabit, the obligation of moral and material assistance) it is possible to seek compensation for the damage suffered.

However, in order to obtain compensation, it is not sufficient that there has been a violation of the duties arising from marriage, but it is also necessary that the default has resulted in a violation of constitutionally guaranteed rights, such as the right to health, privacy, relational relationships.

For example, if the husband undertakes an extramarital affair, without hiding his faith-in behaviour but rather making him known to the circle of people frequented by the couple, the wife is entitled to compensation for the damage, since his right to moral integrity is harmed.

There is a violation of the obligation of fidelity not only when the spouse cheats with a subject of different sex, but also in the case of same-sex betrayal.

Here too, however, for the purposes of compensation, it will be necessary to investigate how the spouse has handled the report to see if there has been an injury to the rights guaranteed by our Constitution.

Certainly. It is possible, even if the spouses have chosen consensual separation, to claim compensation for the damage suffered due to conduct in violation of the duties arisent from the marriage.

According to the current setting given by the Italian Courts, it is not possible to obtain from the lover of his spouse compensation for having “induced” him to treason since in our order there is no general duty of abstention from any interference in the family by others.

Custody of children

The custody of children defines the distribution of parental responsibility on underage children in situations of non-cohabitation, caused by the separation of parents.

It is the measure by which the court, in ruling the separation, determines to which of the two spouses should be entrusted the children: how parental responsibility should be shared on them, with exclusive reference to their moral and material interest, regardless of the outcome of a possible judgment of the separation.

The 2006 reform enshrined the principle of bi-parenthood, which consists of the right of children to continue to maintain balanced relationships with both parents even after the termination of cohabitation.

Each child must be guaranteed the right to have a full relationship with both parents – regardless of what personal relationships they have.
The general rule is that of shared custody of minors to both parents, while sole custody is the exception that must be justified by valid and proven reasons.

Exclusive custody of children to only one of the parents can be arranged in the following cases:

  • when both parents expressly request it
  • in the event that the Judge considers that custody of the other parent is contrary to the child’s interest. In this case, serious reasons of injury to the child should be attached and proven.

The parent, to whom the children are entrusted, exercises sole parental responsibility unless there are provisions of a different type, but the decisions of greatest interest are generally made by mutual agreement between the spouses.
The parent, to whom the children are not entrusted, has the right and duty to supervise their education and education and may appeal to the court if it considers that decisions have been taken that are detrimental to their interest. There are no valid reasons for fostering a single parent:

  • conflict between parents, if they individually do not behave contrary to the child’s interest
  • the physical distance of the two parents
  • the child’s tender age.

Law No. 54 of 2006 placed as a fundamental rule the shared custody of the children of separated couples.

The principle on which it is based is that, even in the event of separation, children have the right to maintain a balanced and continuous relationship with each parent, to receive care, education and education from both, and to maintain relationships with the ascendants (e.g. grandparents) and relatives.

The court, when placing shared custody, also provides for the residence of the children: it is generally specified where the offspring should live habitually.

International child abduction

When one of the parents decides voluntarily, unilaterally and without the consent of the other, to take his child away with the intention of hiding him abroad and to keep him with him permanently, there is the international abduction of a minor.
International abduction of minors occurs even when the child is prevented from returning to the usual state of residence after a transfer that took place for legitimate reasons as in the case of a holiday, a stay with grandparents, after which the parent who brought the child with him does not return him to the usual country of residence.
The international abduction of a child involves not only the terrible detachment from one of the two parenting figures,but also theabandonment of the wider context of life in which the child was inserted.

The Convention on the Rights of the Child signed in New York on 20 November 1989 and ratified by Italy under the Law 27 May 1991 No. 176, stipulates that the child has the right to maintain a stable relationship with both parents. Art. 9 of the Convention establishes the right of the child, separated from either parents or one of them, to regularly engage in personal relations and direct contact with both parental figures, unless this is contrary to the child’s own interest. This principle has been taken up in the Italian law, by law 54/2006, and the Court of Cassation has also repeatedly stated that what it most detects is the interest of the child not to be arbitrarily taken away from his living environment.

The parent, even if the child is legitimate, cannot arbitrarily deprive the child of the other parenting figure, but rather has an obligation to educate and raise awareness of the child to have an ongoing relationship with the other parent. The transfer of the child from the environment in which he grew up and has always lived, where he built the center of his affections and interests and the first important points of reference in the delicate phase of the growth and formation of the personality, is a real act of violence, likely to cause serious damage to the psycho-physical well-being of the child. In cases of abduction, as in all decisions relating to children, the child’s best interests in cultivating a constant and equal relationship with both parents and maintaining the environment in which the child has integrated and cultivates the most significant relationships must therefore be safeguarded.

Of course, the emergency procedure applies to any child who has his usual residence in a Contracting State and is not charged on the 16th year of age.

The aim is to ensure timely and effective protection of the child, acting immediately both to contain the harm done to the child and to prevent the child from becoming integrated into the state and the environment in which he is located as a result of the abduction, making the return of the child more traumatic or even inappropriate. The emergency procedure is aimed at ensuring the immediate return of the child to his usual home state.

In order to make the law clear, the authority must act as quickly as possible, using the emergency procedures provided for by the required state legal system and the return order must be issued at the latest within six weeks of receipt of the return application. The six-week period can only be exceeded in exceptional, explicit and motivated circumstances that make it impossible to comply.

The requirements for the procedure are the illegality of the transfer or non-return.
The transfer or non-return must have occurred in violation of a right of custody, exercised in fact by the parent who has been abducted and attributed to them by legislation or by a judicial or administrative decision of the state where the child had the usual residence immediately before the abduction.

Once you have filed for re-entry, either through the Central Authority, or directly ex art. 29 Conv. Aja, the responsibility to deal with it rests with the state authorities where the child has been transferred or detained.
Art. 12 of the Convention states that, if the return application is filed before the one-year period after the transfer or non-return of the child to the usual state of residence, the judicial authority before which the repatriation proceedings are pending, that the conditions for the application of the conventional procedure exist and, first of all, the illegality of the transfer/detention, has an obligation to order the immediate return of the child.

Inheritance and inheritance

It is possible to dispose, by will, of one’s own assets for the period after one’s death: in this case it is referred to as testamentary succession. If the law is not made up, upon the death of a person, identify the heirs and the inheritance’s dues. There are heirs who cannot be excluded from the succession: spouse and children.

In order to leave your assets to people who are different or to a different extent from the law, you must make a will.

The will is the act by which a person has his own substances for the period in which he or she has ceased to live. In order to be valid and effective, it must have the forms provided by law, which serve to ensure the origin of the statements contained in it.

Within the will, capital allocations can be provided not only to the lenders (spouses, children and ascendants), but also to others, using the so-called “available share” of their assets.

The will also has the advantage of being able to contain some non-asset provisions, such as the establishment of a foundation, the recognition of a natural child, the appointment of a support administrator, etc.

Yes, the separated spouse has the same successor rights as the non-separated spouse, unless he has been charged with separation.

The divorced spouse does not enjoy the inheritance rights provided for the separated spouse, precisely because the divorce permanently dissolves the marriage bond.