Italian Citizenship Requirements
Italian citizenship is granted by birth through the paternal line, with no limit on the number of generations, or through the maternal line for individuals born after 1 January 1948. This is referred to as citizenship by descent, jus sanguinis.
If you were born in the United States (or in any other country where citizenship is acquired by birth), and any one of the situations listed below pertains to you, you could be eligible to apply for Dual Citizenship with Italy. The National Italian American Foundation, NIAF, in collaboration with the Italian Embassy has prepared a FREE on-line questionnaire that will help you determine your eligibility for Italian citizenship. Click here to complete the questionnaire.
Your father was an Italian citizen at the time of your birth (i.e. was not a citizen of the US or another country when you were born);
Your mother was an Italian citizen at the time of your birth (was not yet citizen of the US and you were born after January 1, 1948);
Your paternal grandfather was an Italian citizen, your father was born in the US or a country other than Italy, and your paternal grandfather was still an Italian citizen at the time of his birth;
Your maternal grandfather was an Italian citizen, your mother was born in the US or a country other than Italy, and your maternal grandfather was still an Italian citizen at the time of her birth, and you were born after January 1, 1948;
Your paternal or maternal great-grandfather was an Italian citizen, your paternal or maternal grandparent was born in the US or a country other than Italy, and your paternal or maternal great grandfather was an Italian citizen at the time of your grandparent’s birth.
If your Italian ancestor was a woman born before 1/1/1948 she can only transfer Italian citizenship to her children born after 1/1/48 and to their descendants. This law has been appealed in several trials at the High Court of Rome. Please visit Italian Citizenship for Descendants of Women for detailed information.
Italian ancestors who naturalized before July 1st, 1912 cannot transmit citizenship to their descendants (Law n. 555 of June 13th, 1912). Please contact us for information on appealing this law through the Court at Rome.
If your Italian ancestor was born in the following localities Veneto, Friuli-Venezia-Giulia, or Trentino Alto-Adige, in order to apply for the Italian citizenship you must prove that he or she left Italy after July 16th, 1920. Please contact us for more information on this requirement.
An individual must apply through the Italian Consulate that has jurisdiction over their place of legal residence. Each consulate has slightly different procedures regarding required documents and translations, appointment scheduling, and waiting times. However, the legal criteria for granting citizenship jus sanguinis is the same.
We provide a phone consultation service to review your case, to determine your eligibility to apply for Italian Citizenship by Descent, and to provide you with the specific document and translation requirements of the Italian Consulate Jurisdiction in which you reside. The fee for the initial 30 minute phone consultation is $80.00 and will allow you to receive a 5% discount on any order that you place within 30 days of the consultation. We offer complete services to gather all required documents and provide translations please visit our Services and Fees page for complete information.
Contact us to schedule your appointment! Appointments are available Tuesday & Friday from 10:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Central Standard Time