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My Italian fiance and I (I'm American) plan to marry in 2010. I have questions about where to get married and where the job opportunities will be:

-In terms of paperwork, does it make a difference whether we marry in the US or Italy?

I have stronger work qualifications than my fiance. I've also worked in the UK and the US in a large tech company but I don't speak fluent Italian.
-Once we're married, how long will it take before I can work in Italy?
-What are the chances of landing a job in an Italian company without being fluent in the language?
-In what cities is a foreigner most likely to find work?
-I am a middle-aged woman (45), is it going to be extra difficult to find work in Italy?
-Once we're married will I be able to work outside of Italy such as the UK?
-Based on what you know would it make more sense for us to move to the US to live and work? We'd both prefer to live in Europe but I need to be able to work.

Thanks for any and all insight!
 

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They toughen the marriage rules a year or two ago. If you're currently in the US you'll likely find it easier and quicker to marry in the US. Then go to the consulate and get a family visa . If you go this route rather then marrying in Italy you should be able to start working right away.

You age and language will work against you getting a job. Add in the current economy and it's that much tougher.

I don't remember what the work rules are for family members in the UK. Best to check with the UK consulate on that.
 

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As the spouse of an EU national, you should have full rights to live and work just about anywhere in the EU. That said, however, it can be very difficult to find work in Europe over the age of about 40 or 45.

It can depend a bit on your qualifications - having worked "overseas" (i.e. anywhere other than the US) can be a big point in your favor, but it also helps to have some sort of training or experience in your field that is in short supply locally. The local language at a conversational level at least is usually a requirement, no matter what country you're in, and depending on what your qualifications are, make sure they "transfer" or are appropriately recognized in your target country.

Consider, too, your situation regarding the national retirement system. Most European systems are based on 40 years of contributions, and while they will count your years of work in the US (under various social security treaties), your income level won't count for those years - and your US social security will be subject to the WEP (Windfall Elimination Provision) if you receive any sort of "foreign" pension.

As far as the paperwork is concerned, it's probably easier to get married in the US. As far as getting a spousal visa is concerned, settling in Italy is the logical choice. But you want to take your fiancé's work history, qualifications and prospects into account, too.
Cheers,
Bev
 

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Once we're married will I be able to work outside of Italy such as the UK?
Not without permission. For you to live and work in UK, you both need to move to UK and you, as a family member of an EU/EEA citizen, will need to apply for an EEA Family Permit (a kind of visa) at the British consulate. It shouldn't be too difficult to obtain (you need to meet certain financial requirements) and with it you'll be able to live and work in UK for 6 months. Once in UK with a job and residence, you then apply for a more permanent permit, valid 5 years, which can take up to 6 months to process.
Other EU countries have similar but different rules, which you'll need to find out from relevant consulates/embassies.
Very broadly speaking, most migrants find living and working in Europe as someone married to an EU national is easier than for a European married to a US citizen to settle in the US, what with green card rules and what have you. But individual circumstances may vary and affect outcome.
 
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