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Italy, an Opportunity for Lawyers Working with the Public Administration in the Covid19 Era

Gianfranco Di Garbo's picture
Published: 04/01/22 - Country: Italy

In November 2021 the Italian Government adopted a plan (called PNRR) to cope with the economical downturn due to the Covid 19 infection and to make the best use of the “recovery” funds received by the EU.

Under the Plan, among many other measures,  the Public Administration has been authorized to recruit quite a large number of employees, to be hired with contracts for a limited period of time (up to 36 months, subject to be extended in case of need) to assist in the implementation of the PNRR.

Interesting enough, the laws implementing the plan (in particular the Decree n. 152 of November 11, 2021) provide for the hiring also of professionals, i.e. self employed workers like engineers, architects and, of course, lawyers.

For the lawyers, in particular, the Decree states that they can be hired by the Public Administration, within the scope of PNRR, without cancelling their registration with the Bar.

This is a very innovative rule, because under the professional law the attorneys registered in the Bar cannot be hired by any public o private entity, lest the cancellation from the Bar.

It is important to note, however, that this rule allows the attorneys to remain registered in the Bar, but not to exercise the profession, which remains incompatible with the activity performed with the Public Administration. The advantage is that they can maintain their seniority for the purposes of the social security regulations and, once the contract with the Public Administration ceases, they can restart the individual profession without difficulties.

Although with this limitation, the rule has been welcomed as a great opportunity, especially for young lawyers, who can mature significant experience working in the PNRR areas, which can be later exploited in the prosecution of their professional free activity.

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Gianfranco Di Garbo's picture

Gianfranco Di Garbo is a lawyer active in civil and commercial litigation, including domestic and international arbitration.

Born on 30.5.1951 and graduated with honors in jurisprudence in Genoa in 1972, he completed his studies attending to programs at  the London School of Economics (London) and the Academy of American Comparative Law (Dallas).
Gianfranco has been a member of the bar since 1977 and has been a member of the Special Register of Higher Courts since 1993.
From 1985 to 2019 he was international partner of the Milan office of the international law firm Baker & McKenzie, of which he was managing partner from 1995 to 1998 and from 2000 to 2003, coordinator of the Labor Law department from 1988 to 2010 and coordinator of the Litigation group (ordinary and arbitration) from 2012 to 2019.