Back in January, during one of our house hunting visits to Italy, we had paid a visit to the “Agenzia delle Entrate”, to get our “Codice Fiscale”. This is similar to a National Insurance number, a combination of letters and numbers that gives you a tax ID number.
However, this number is not required just for tax purposes, but is used as proof of identity in almost every aspect of official life, such as setting up mobile phone contracts, opening a bank account, collecting post at the Post Office, accessing the National Health System.
However unwittingly I had made a big mistake, as I had made out my “Codice Fiscale” in my married name, using my British passport for identification. Whereas in Italy all females retain their maiden name or “nome di nascita” when they get married, instead of adopting their husband’s surname as is normal in the UK. Yet nobody in the local office of “Agenzia delle Entrate” had thought to mention this to me !!!
The “Notaio” (the lawyer) had stumbled upon this error when preparing the paperwork for the house purchase. In order to purchase a house in Italy I had to be recognised by my maiden name. Simple we thought, just go back to the office and change the surname.
Oh No !!! Nothing is so straight forward in Italy!!!
For this I now needed a certified translated copy of my birth certificate.