First fine levied in Milan for foreign number-plates

After 60 days’ residence in Italy.

The first maxi fine has been levied in Milan after the introduction of the so-called “Security Decree”, for an Italian caught still driving a car with Romanian plates after 60 days of residence in Italy.

The driver was fined €712, and the car was sequestered. The driver was allowed 180 days to legalise the position of the foreign-plated car, which will otherwise be confiscated. Some might even consider him lucky: the fines can reach a maximum of €2,848.

The rule applies to drivers, Italian or foreign, who are already resident in Italy for 60 days or more. Exceptions are allowed for those who can show by documents on board the vehicle that it is being used for hire or in leasing from a company based in the EU, but without an operational branch in Italy.

The new regulations came into effect on 1 January to combat the rising tide of cheaters who neglect to import their cars legally. It then often turns out that the foreign plated vehicles are without adequate insurance – or indeed without any at all – have paid no road tax, and have not been recently subjected to an MoT test, or revisione.

Drivers of foreign cars also often pay little attention to speed limits, parking rules or access to ZTL limited traffic zones, knowing it is unlikely they will ever be traced. While 2018 figures are not yet available, the trend is clear: from 2011 to 2017, the number of such fines in Milan alone rose from 94,000 to 110,000, of which only around a half were ever paid.