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Get Italian Dual Citizenship by Descent (Jure Sanguinis)
If you’ve searched online for Italian citizenship requirements, and you’re more confused now than you were at the beginning, you’re not alone! There’s plenty of information floating around on the internet about the qualifications for dual citizenship, but it’s often confusing or incomplete. However, the process is simpler than you might think, and many people across the U.S. have become Italian citizens with some help.
To help you make sense of the process of becoming an Italian citizen through jure sanguinis (blood right), the experts at the Italian American Citizenship Assistance Program have provided a step-by-step overview below. We provide all of these services to our customers to help them gain Italian citizenship by jure sanguinis (by descent), with experts to help every step of the way.
It doesn’t matter if you need family research help, translations, or help with the consulates: We will be there every step of the way—but first, here’s what you can expect from the entire process of gaining Italian citizenship, the nine steps you’ll have to follow:
1. Determine Your Most Recent Italian-Born Ancestor
Since jure sanguinis citizenship laws are all about descent, determining your most recent Italian-born ancestor is the first critical step. For some, this might be as early as a grandparent or great grandparent. Others will have to trace their family much further back to find out if they qualify for Italian citizenship.
If you’re not sure where to start with research, a genealogist can help you kickstart the application process by researching your family to find out who was born in Italy, if an ancestor naturalized, and more.
2. Make an Appointment with Your Local Consulate
Do a search online to find the Italian consulate address for your region. Italian consulates are a vital step to gaining your Italian dual citizenship. It’s important to make this appointment well in advance, as appointments at Italian consulates can be a bit of a wait. How much of a wait depends on your area and your case.
3. Obtain Your Ancestor’s Naturalization Records
The date your ancestor became naturalized is important because it will determine whether you can become a dual citizen if naturalization is what you depend on. Italy as we know it was established on March 17 1861, but, since then, the laws have been ever-changing.
If your ancestor did not naturalize, you can skip this step.
4. Obtain Your Ancestor’s Italian Vital Records
At a minimum, you’ll need to obtain a certified copy of birth certificates of Italian ancestors, plus possibly some additional records, especially if they were born in Italy and didn’t naturalize. Expert help will be able to study Italian laws to make sure you have the right documents for you and ensure the process is as smooth as possible.
5. Obtain American Vital Records
You will require copies of all birth, marriage, and divorce certificates for you and everyone in your Italian ancestor’s lineage, as well as any appropriate death certificates. Make sure you can obtain all of these, and if not, seek assistance. Additionally, they require birth certificates and occasionally death certificates for those who do not have Italian ancestry (such as spouses).
6. Apostille Your American Vital Records
An apostille is a form of authentication like a notarization; it’s a way of certifying documents as official and legitimate in any country. When applying for Italian citizenship, this is a crucial step, as the Italian authorities need to see that everything is valid.
Apostilles can usually be obtained through the state, and you will need to seek an apostille in the state that the document was originally issued in. Apostilles cannot be given for photocopies of documents. It must be the original or a certified copy.
7. Translate Americans Documents to Italian
All the vital records must be translated into Italian. An expert service can help with these translations.
8. Present Documents at the Consulate Office
During the appointment you already booked at the consulate office, you must submit your application for Italian citizenship in person. Nowadays, many consulates ask you to submit the folder rather than attending the meeting in person.
There are currently nine Italian consulates in the United States plus an embassy. You may have to travel a considerable distance to get to your regional office, so make sure you plan ahead. Appointments are difficult to get and not easily changed once issued. If you need to delay, you risk delaying the process significantly.
The appointment can also be a little bit of a wait. Although good services can make the process as stress-free as possible, a lot of gaining Italian citizenship by descent involves waiting around for things to be ready. Obtaining Italian citizenship is easier for many Americans than you might think, but you will still need to come equipped with patience.
9. Get Your Italian Passport
Once your Italian citizenship is recognized, your consulate office will either automatically register you in AIRE (registry of Italians living abroad) or tell you who to contact to register in AIRE. Once you are registered, your final step is getting your Italian passport.
Get Help Understanding Italian Dual Citizenship Requirements
The fastest way to find out if you qualify for Italian citizenship is to consult an expert like the Italian American Citizenship Assistance Program. We’re here to help you navigate and understand the often-complex Italian dual citizenship requirements, gather the necessary documents, and more.
Our Italian citizenship program has helped hundreds of people discover whether they are eligible to become an Italian citizen. We have experts in every area of the process, from finding out about your family history to providing translations. We’re up to date on laws that have changed the process, like the law about descendants of Italian women put into practice on January 1 1948, and we’ll make sure we minimize delays and errors.
Contact us today if you’re ready to get started on your journey to citizenship in Italy!