Thanks to our Italian ancestors, many of us who were born in the US can claim Italian citizenship by descent, also known as “jus sanguinis.” Our Italian forefathers developed this law with the intention that the descendants of the Italians who were emigrating from Italy might one day decide to return.

Today, Americans of Italian descent seek Italian citizenship jus sanguinis for a variety of reasons. Some simply want to avail their right and identify with their Italian heritage. For others frequent travel to Europe is made much easier with the Italian passport and others want the Italian citizenship to facilitate property purchase and real estate tax payments. A significant number of Italian-Americans are also in need of the EU passport to pursue job/professional opportunities, or want to provide the opportunity for their children to study abroad at more affordable rates and without the need for student visa. We have even had parents of professional athletes seek our services to help their children obtain dual citizenship with Italy because of offers to play sports in Italy were contingent upon receipt of citizenship. Two of our clients have sought citizenship to be eligible for experimental medical treatments in Italy which are currently offered only to EU Citizens. I decided to apply for Italian citizenship by descent after returning from a trip in which I visited all 4 towns of my maternal and paternal Italian ancestors in 2005 with a deep sense of connection to the regions, relatives and culture of Calabria and Basilicata.

To be recognized as an Italian citizen by descent one must apply through the Italian Consulate that has jurisdiction over his/her place of legal residence. All final decisions are made by the Italian Consulate. The application process requires the submission of many legal documents from Italy and the US naturalization record of the Italian ancestor, or official statements and Census reports from the US government authorities, as well as US birth, marriage, death records pertaining to the ancestor, intermediary ancestors and applicant with professional Italian translation of many of the US documents. Although the law for granting Italian citizenship by descent is a national Italian law, the consulates all have their discretion as to which US documents need translation, whether or not the birth records of the spouses of the Italian ascendants need to be submitted, and if so whether or not they need Apostille, and which type of “Naturalization Record” is acceptable.

Receiving dual citizenship with Italy has unique meaning for each person, and the process of preparing the application can be quite a feat! Knowing which Italian Consulate wants what from where and who can be daunting and time consuming. We have been successfully helping Italian Americans prepare their applications for Italian citizenship since 2007 with a team of professional researchers, translators and legal records specialists who are committed to seeing your Italian citizenship application approved!

Citizenship for Italian Descendants