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Residence papers renewal – Venice: an important Court’s sentence

23 dicembre 2004

In Venice Court – appeal civil section n.3 – reformed a provision of Venice monocratic judge and affirmed an interpretative principle that is very important to families’ matters.

Immigration consolidated act art. 19 provides for that expulsion is not accomplished in case some hypothes occur. The appeal studied the case of cohabitation with an Italian citizen that is either husband/wife or a close relative (up to 3rd degree).
The appeal concerned a foreign citizen that applied and obtained residence papers (he lives with his brother that was naturalised Italian) issued on basis of family matters.
Papers were released because this migrant citizen lives with his brother (2nd grade relation), who is Italian. Labour brought this person to another city and he therefore had to move residence away from his brother’s.
At this point police headquarters denied papers renewal and stated that since cohabitation is over such “special” residence papers could not be renewed.

Appeal was promoted (Immigration consolidated act art. 30) at civil court, which takes care of family matters. At first the judge in Venice disagreed with the appeal and accepted police headquarters denial.
This judge stated that papers renewal could not be possible since cohabitation was over. The lawyer therefore decided to reclaim against Court’s sentence and appeal finally ended up with a litterally opposite to the first sentence.
Court sentenced that cohabitation is not fundamental to family rejoining and it stated that law’s principles aim to safeguard family tides and that, according to Immigration consolidated act, these can be preserved in spite of the lack of cohabitation.
Police has therefore no right to deny papers renewal. The rule does not in fact consider cohabitation fundamental.

This sentence is the first to interpret rules on family cohesion. It specifically interprets art. 19, the one that guarantees the right to regular residence on basis of family matters.