On 15 October 2015 the Italian Government submitted to Parliament the so called “Stability Law 2015″, a bill containing a number of measures aimed at vitalizing the Italian economy and boosting grow in the system, including the patent box, which is tax incentive designed to encourage companies to make profits from their patents by reducing the tax paid on those profits.

According to the bill, starting from 2015, Italian companies may request the application of a discounted tax rate for some profits deriving from the exploitation of their intellectual property for the following five years. The percentage of profits deriving from intellectual property rights to be excluded from taxation will be: 30% in the first year; 40% in the second year; and then 50% for the remaining three years.

The measure will cover profits deriving from copyright, patents and trademarks which are functionally equivalent to the patents as well as to know-how exploited through licenses. In the event the IP is exploited by the IP holder directly (or through subsidiaries) it will be necessary to determine the percentage of the IP profits within the profits generated by the company. Furthermore the profits gained by the holder with the transfer of the intellectual property do not concur to form the basis for if they have been re-invested for at least 90% in other intellectual property rights of the same holder.