Do You Qualify for Italian Dual Citizenship?

For many people, obtaining Italian dual citizenship can sound like a rather complicated process and this is certainly true for those who might not be familiar with Italian laws regarding applying for citizenship by descent. As a company that helps navigate through the process, IDC helps people apply for Italian citizenship through descent, by marriage, or naturalization.

Obtaining dual citizenship is not only more straightforward than you might think but also a lot easier than anywhere else in Europe. You see, Italy has implemented a very favorable law called ‘Jus Sanguinis’ which essentially states that nationality is determined by the right of blood rather than the place of birth. This means if you have ancestors from Italy, you may already be an Italian citizen and not even know it! All you would need to do is claim your right to Italian citizenship.

But why might you even want dual citizenship in the first place?

Benefits of Italian Dual Citizenship

Well, Italian dual citizenship will enable you to live, work, or buy property not only in Italy but in any country within the European Union. While you may already have access to certain benefits, the health and education system is also especially good in Italy. What’s more, you can reside in Italy and travel throughout Europe without restriction while you retain dual citizenship.

However, you must first qualify for Italian citizenship which is most often the part that leaves people confused and sometimes overwhelmed. With this in mind, let’s take a look at how to become an Italian citizen, the basic requirements of Italian dual citizenship and how you can get started with checking your eligibility.

Do You Qualify for Italian Citizenship?

You may automatically qualify for Italian citizenship by descent through your ancestral ties. However, you must be able to prove these ties and provide official documents to support your dual citizenship application.

For instance, if your mother or father was born in Italy, you must provide a long-form birth certificate as part of the application. Similarly, if an ancestor was recently married in Italy, you will need an official copy of that marriage certificate and a birth certificate to prove that they are in fact a legitimate ancestor.

The application process is very detailed and lengthy as the local Italian consulate cannot be expected to research these claims or source the necessary documents for your application.

At the same time, things can get a little tricky at this point, you may also need to prove that your respective ancestor did not become naturalized before the birth of their child in the United States. On the other hand, when applying for dual citizenship through maternal lineage, you should know that the process and Italian laws are different than those of applying through descent (jure sanguinis).

As you can imagine, this is often the reason why people seek IDC’s guidance with their application for dual citizenship and something with which they are always more than happy to help. Properly identifying your ancestor born in Italy is often the first and more difficult step due to the various laws surrounding your most successful path to qualifying for Italian citizenship. Depending on how far back your ancestry ties go, sometimes asking your family is futile and you will be required to seek deeper ancestry resources.

How to Check Your Eligibility and Apply for Dual Citizenship

If you are interested in finding out if you’re eligible for dual citizenship, you should contact Italian Dual Citizenship (IDC) lawyers at (213) 277-8705 for a free consultation to determine if you are indeed eligible for Italian citizenship. The wait times depend on your location and can be quite long so it’s better to speak to a IDC professional first to know what your best options are for seeking dual citizenship.

Checking Naturalization Records

As you may know, the United States government provides extensive resources in terms of naturalization records. For this reason, you can search for your Italian ancestors with just the name and date of birth of these individuals. As a quick tip, the date of this naturalization is even more specific and the fastest way to locate the relevant ancestor.

Supporting Your Claims to Ancestral Ties

We always try to stress the importance of documentation to our clients. After all, the success or failure of an application will always depend on the extent of supporting evidence for your ancestral ties.

Depending on the circumstances, you might need to obtain a marriage certificate for any ancestor who got married in Italy but a birth certificate is mandatory. Also, if you can obtain a birth certificate for the spouse in question, this will most certainly assist with the progress of your application. However, it’s best to contact your Italian Dual Citizenship (IDC) lawyer and ask exactly what documents you need to obtain for the application. Or speak to them about their Full Service package where they handle your Italian citizenship application from start-to-finish.

Apostilling and Translating Your Documents

All US-based documents will need to be apostilled and translated for the Italian consulate. However, this translation must be carried out by a consulate-approved translator. In case you’re not familiar, ‘apostille’ is the way in which the US Secretary of State will validate your official documents.

Submitting Your Application and the Importance of Patience

When you use IDC’s Full Service package, they will provide you with a completed dual citizenship kit that will be submitted to the Italian consulate and walk you through the process to obtain your Italian passport. It’s critical to ensure everything is in order, as even minor issues can result in lengthy delays. Patience is key while the consulate reviews your application. As we like to tell our clients, the wait times are nothing compared to the lifetime benefits of Italian citizenship.

Italian Dual Citizenship (IDC) is a premier law firm with a team of Italian lawyers, genealogists, and translators helping those of Italian decent or those married to an Italian spouse apply for citizenship to Italy. With legal offices in the USA and Italy, IDC has simplified the process of applying for Italian citizenship For more information or inquiries, visit IDC online at or call (213) 277-8705.