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Obtaining Italian Citizenship

Obtaining Italian Citizenship

The Benefits of Becoming Italian

The process of obtaining Italian nationality can take some time, but once obtained, it provides access to a range of benefits and rights as an Italian citizen, including the ability to vote, work, and travel freely within the Schengen Area and to all countries in the World that admits Italian nationals without any visa requirement.

How to Become an Italian Citizen

Photo by Markus Spiske

There are several legal grounds based on which one can apply for Italian Citizenship (and therefore an Italian Passport). The most common legal grounds to obtain or be acknowledged Italian citizenship are the following:

  1. Having Italian ancestry (parents or ancestors). (Recognition of Italian citizenship).
  2. Being married to an Italian citizen (gay marriage or civil union is accepted). In case of marriage with an Italian citizen, the application for Italian citizenship will be possible after three years from the wedding date if the couple resides abroad, two years in case of residency in Italy. These requirements are halved in case of minor children. (Acquisition of Italian citizenship).
  3. Having resided legally in Italy for a continuous time. Most commonly, the period of continuous residency in Italy requested to obtain Italian citizenship through residency is 4 years for nationals of an EU Member State and 10 years for non-EU nationals. (Acquisition of Italian citizenship).
  4. Having been employed by the Italian State for at least 5 years. (Acquisition of Italian citizenship).
  5. Declaration of will to obtain Italian citizenship by someone born in Italy who has resided in Italy up to 18 years old, or in other specific circumstances. (Acquisition of Italian citizenship).
  6. Reacquisition of Italian citizenship that was lost due to naturalization in a foreign country before 1992 (Reacquisition of Italian citizenship).

How to Apply for Italian Citizenship

Once you’ve determined your eligibility, you can begin the process of applying for citizenship, which always involves the following steps:

  1. Preparing the relevant supporting documentation, including apostilles and translation of nonItalian documentation; 
  2. Submitting the application to the competent Italian Authority: The Italian Consulate, the territorial Branch of the Ministry of Interior called “Prefettura” or the Italian Municipality of residency of the applicant, depending on the specific circumstances of the case.

You can find more information on each procedure, the competent examining authority and how to obtain Italian citizenship by browsing the following specific pages:

Citizenship Through Ancestry.

Citizenship Through Marriage.

Citizenship Re-Acquisition.

Citizenship Through Residency.

Citizenship Through Declaration of Will.

Dual Citizenship 

Italy allows dual citizenship, which means that, under Italian Law, you can hold Italian citizenship and the citizenship of other countries simultaneously. However, it is important to note that some countries may have different laws regarding dual citizenship. Therefore, it is recommended to check with the relevant authorities in your home country to ensure that holding dual citizenship is allowed from their perspective. There are several benefits of dual citizenship, including the ability to travel freely between the two countries, vote in both countries’ elections, work and study in both countries without restrictions, and access to healthcare and social services. 

Italian Citizenship Lawyer

Lexia’s immigration law team offers top-notch Italian citizenship and immigration services. The team includes experienced Italian citizenship lawyers who are well-versed in Italian immigration law and can assist you with a range of legal matters related to Italian citizenship. Whether you’re looking to obtain Italian citizenship or need help navigating the complex Italian immigration system, these lawyers can provide you with the guidance and support you need. Plus, with a convenient location and a knowledge of digital tools, they can provide you with Italian citizenship assistance both locally and from afar.  

If you believe that you may meet the requirements for one of the aforementioned ways to obtain Italian citizenship, do not hesitate to write to Lexia using the contact form below and you will be provided with further information and preliminary counseling. Get in touch!

    Featured image by Michele Bitetto


    Easy Milano

    Easy Milano is the online publication for the international community of Milan. We offer practical tips, key information and essential insights about living and working in Italy. Easy Milano has been assisting English speaking expats in Milan since 1999.
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