Freedom of association in Italy: Genesis, evolution and limits of protection of associations in the Italian legal system
School of Law, University College Cork
This paper aims to provide an overview of freedom of association in Italy and to also cover the issues of ‘social groups’ (organisations or communities standing between the individual and the State, including family, religious communities, associations and political parties)1 and of the rights of associations in the Italian legal system. It will develop the issue from a constitutional law perspective, although there are other equally interesting perspectives: the civil law analysis of associations; the commercial-tributary analysis of the economic-fiscal activities of associations; the labour law analysis of work relations in associations; the criminal law analysis of crimes related to associations and their enforcement. The focus of the paper will instead be mainly on the fundamental right to freedom of association in the Italian legal system, albeit issues relating to other areas of law will also be touched upon. From a methodological point of view, the contribution offers an analysis conducted within the categories of Italian constitutional law. In order to address the typical problems of comparative law, which first and foremost are the translation2 and conceptualisation of national legal categories,3 categories deriving from Western legal systems that share similar legal notions will also be used to explain Italian legal categories, and a lexicon consistent with that of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) will be employed. The paper is structured into three additional sections and some brief conclusions. Section 2 contains a description of the historical evolution of freedom of association in the Italian legal system, its formalisation in the 1948 Italian Constitution (IC) and the rationales behind its protection. In section 3, the limits on freedom of association in the Italian legal system are analysed, looking at the subjects that enjoy this right, prohibited associations and compulsory associations. Section 4, on the other hand, will address the issue of the rights in associations and the rights of associations, focusing on compulsory associations and so-called tendency organisations (a legal category comparable to the German legal category of Tendenzbetrieb). In the conclusions, some recent trends in the area of freedom of association will be summarised, along with an overview of some recent legislative activities.
Freedom of association , Italy
Monti, M. (2024) ‘Freedom of association in Italy: Genesis, evolution and limits of protection of associations in the Italian legal system’, Societās Working Paper 02/2024 (18pp). Cork: School of Law, University College Cork.
© 2023, the Author. Views expressed do not represent the views of the Societās project or the School of Law at UCC.