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Citizenship

 

Citizenship

ACQUISITION OF ITALIAN CITIZENSHIP BY BIRTH RIGHT

CITIZENSHIP AS A RESULT OF ITALIAN PARENTS/ANCESTORS (“ius sanguinis”)

Article 1 of Law No. 91/92 lays down that a person acquires Italian citizenship when born of a father or a mother who are Italian citizens. Hence the principle of ius sanguinis - already enshrined in the previous legislation - is reaffirmed as a key principle for the acquisition of citizenship, while the ius soli remains an exceptional and residual case.

While explicitly stating that also the mother can transmit citizenship, the Article fully acknowledges the principle of equality between men and women as regards the transmission of the status civitatis.

Recognition of the possession of citizenship to foreigners descending from Italian ancestors who emigrated to countries where the ius soli is in force.

While Article 1 of the Law of 1912 reaffirmed the principle of recognition of Italian citizenship through paternal lineage to the citizens' children regardless of their place of birth, as already provided for in the Civil Code of 1865, Article 7 was meant to ensure that the children of Italian emigrants could maintain the link with their ascendants’ country of origin, thus introducing an important exception to the principle of single citizenship.

In fact, Article 7 of Law No. 555/1912 enabled the children of Italian citizens, born in a foreign State which had granted them citizenship according to the principle of ius soli, to retain the Italian citizenship acquired at birth, even if the parents lost it when minors, thus recognizing to the persons concerned the significant right to renounce it when becoming of legal age, if living abroad.

This special rule derogated not only to the principle of single citizenship, but also to the principle whereby the fate of the children’ s citizenship depends on the father, as provided for by Article 12 of Law No. 555\1912.

Hence the conditions required for such recognition are based, on the one hand, on the demonstration of descent from the subject originally having the status of citizen (the ancestor who emigrated) and, on the other, on the proof that there were no interruption in the transmission of citizenship (failed foreign naturalization of the ancestor before the birth of the children; absence of declarations of renunciation of Italian citizenship by further descendants before the birth of the next generation, thus proving that the transmission of citizenship did not stop).

The procedures for recognizing the possession of Italian citizenship iure sanguinis were specifically formalized in circular letter No. K.28.1 of April 8, 1991 of the Ministry for Internal Affairs, the legal validity of which was not affected by the subsequent entry into force of Law No. 91/1992.

The authority competent for carrying out the ascertainment shall be determined according to the place of residence: for those living abroad it is the competent Consular Office having territorial jurisdiction.

The recognition procedure develops with the following steps:

To ascertain that lineage started with an Italian ancestor (there are no limits of generations); to ascertain that the Italian ancestor retained Italian citizenship until the birth of the descendants. The lack of naturalization or the date of any naturalization of the ancestor shall be proven by a certificate issued by the competent foreign Authority. Descent from the Italian ancestor shall be proven by means of civil status documents of birth and marriage; said documents shall be duly legalized, if requested, and accompanied by an official translation. In this regard, it should be noted that the transmission of Italian citizenship through maternal lineage is possible only for children born after January 1, 1948, e.g. the date of entry into force of the Constitution. It should be certified that neither the applicant nor the ascendants have ever renounced Italian citizenship, thus interrupting the transmission of citizenship, through appropriate certificates issued by the competent Italian diplomatic and consular authorities.

The applicant shall submit the application accompanied by the required complete documentation designed to prove the requirements and conditions listed above.

The application shall be submitted to the Consular Office of the district in which the foreigner of Italian origin lives.

Required documentation:

(Maltese and non-Maltese citizens)

As from July 8th 2014 all applications for the recognition of the Italian citizenship Jure Sanguinis (by descent) are subject to the payment of a € 300.00 fee (to be paid cash).

The application fee is NON REFUNDABLE, regardless of the outcome of the petition.

Please note: the exam of documentation for the recognition of Italian citizenship for descendants of Italian born ancestors is based on the check of original certificates. The original certificates must be kept in our records and shall NOT be returned. All certificates must be:

· legalised by means of Apostille (except Italian certificates)

· translated into Italian and have a certification of translation and legalisation.

No one case is entirely the same as another. It is not possible to check the documents before receiving the payment for the analysis therefore you are kindly requested not to send documentation by email or photocopies since they will be rejected. It is entirely the applicant’s responsibility to provide the documentation needed to assess the right to Italian citizenship.

Residents in this Consular district, whose family members have already obtained recognition of citizenship at an Italian Consulate other than this or the Italian Municipality, must present all the original documentation relating to all direct ascendants.

Applicants must produce the following:

· APPLICATION FORM DULY COMPLETED AND UNSIGNED (see Forms). The application must be signed in front of the officer during the appointment. Consular fees for the legalisation of the applicant’s signature on the application will be required (art. 24 – see Consular Fees);

· ORIGINAL BIRTH, MARRIAGE AND DEATH CERTIFICATES FOR THE LAST PERSON/ANCESTOR BORN IN ITALY (Please Note: the ancestor’s birth certificate MUST be issued by the Comune of origin in Italy, it is called “Estratto per riassunto dell’atto di nascita”);

· ORIGINAL BIRTH, MARRIAGE AND DEATH CERTIFICATES for all the descendants of the Italian born in Italy in the line leading to the applicant, including birth and, if applicable, marriage and/or divorce certificates of the applicant;

· DECLARATION from the Local Authorities in the country of residence of the last person born in Italy that he/she never naturalised in that Country, or with the date of naturalisation;

· If the ancestor naturalised in the country of emigration before the next descendant was born, you do not qualify for Italian citizenship;

· If any of the ancestors renounced the Italian citizenship before the birth of the next descendant, you do not qualify for Italian citizenship;

· If the Italian ascendant, born in Italy and emigrated abroad, has used his name and surname in different forms, or the generalities of the same are indicated differently in the deeds relating to the descendants, they must all be reported in the aforementioned "non-naturalization" or "naturalization" certificate.

· Double-check all foreign documents to ensure that there are no discrepancies or inconsistencies in the names, surnames, dates and places of birth. If there are discrepancies in these fields, it is necessary to have the certificates modified through an "official declaration of modification of a document", to be requested from the Authorities which issued the document or through an order of the competent Court.

· APPLICANT’S PASSPORT and photocopy of the pages showing the photograph, signature.

· (for non-Maltese citizens only) Maltese residence permit or working visa issued at least 1 year before submission of your citizenship application. The Maltese residence permit or working visa must be renewable. If you are in possession of a tourist visa or a student visa, you CANNOT apply for Italian citizenship.

· (for non-Maltese citizens only) PROOF OF ADDRESS (job contract / house lease contract);

Each of the above certificates and the declaration (except for the “estratto” issued in Italy) must be legalised and translated into Italian. The legalisation is by means of an Apostille, if the Country signed the Hague Convention of 5th October 1961, if not it must be legalised by the Italian Embassy/Consulate in the country of issue.

Each original certificate and document must be submitted together with a photocopy of each page. PHOTOCOPIES MUST BE ON ONE SIDE ONLY. DOUBLESIDED PHOTOCOPIES WILL NOT BE ACCEPTED.

Certificates for the recognition of citizenship by descent do not have an expiration date.

Italian mothers can transfer their Italian citizenship only to children born on and after 01/01/1948.

Applicants will need to attend the appointment in person (by appointment only)

No information will be provided to agencies or law firms

The whole process can take up to two years to be finalized.

Please note: contact the Citizenship Office for an appointment only after you have collected all the required documentation.

CLICK HERE FOR APPLICATION.

Law No. 379 of December 14, 2000

The declaration designed to obtain Italian citizenship for the persons born and formerly living in the territories of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire and their descendants, pursuant to Law 379/2000, could be made by December 20, 2010 to the Italian consular authorities, if the applicant was living abroad, or to the Civil Status Registrar of the Municipality, if the applicant was living in Italy.

The applications submitted by the deadline are examined by an interministerial Committee set up within the Interior Ministry, which provides its opinion on the existence of the requirements set by law. If the opinion is favourable, the Interior Ministry issues authorization to the granting of citizenship.

The necessary requirements for granting Italian citizenship are the following:

- birth and residence of the ancestor in the territories formerly belonging to the Austro-Hungarian Empire and annexed to Italy at the end of the First World War in compliance with the Treaty of San Germano;

- emigration abroad of the ancestor between December 25, 1867 and July 16, 1920.

Law no. 124 of March 8, 2006

It provides for recognition of Italian citizenship to:

1. theItalian nationals living in Istria, Fiume and Dalmatia from 1940 to 1947, who lost their property when those territories were assigned to the Yugoslav Republic in accordance with the Treaties of Paris of February 10, 1947, and their descendants;

2. the Italian nationals living until 1977 in the so-called “Zone B” of the former Free Territory of Trieste, who lost Italian citizenship when said territory was assigned to the Yugoslav Republic pursuant to the Treaty of Osimo of November 10, 1975, and their descendants.

The applications shall be submitted to the Italian diplomatic-consular authorities if the applicants live abroad, or to the Municipality if living in Italy.

There are two separate groups of beneficiaries:

A. People subject to Article 19 of the Paris Peace Treaty, as already living in the territories assigned in 1947.

With a view to proving the existence of the requirements stated in Article 17 bis, paragraph 1, subparagraph a), of Law No. 91/92, the following documents shall be attached to the application:

a) birth certificate, possibly based on the international model;

b) certificate demonstrating foreign citizenship;

c) certificate of current residence;

d) certificate or other documents proving residence on June 10, 1940 in the territories assigned to the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia;

e) certification proving that the applicant was an Italian citizen on September 15, 1947- the date in which the Paris Peace Treaty took effect (or other equally valid documentation such as certificate of military service, passport, etc.);

f) written confirmation from any clubs, associations or communities of Italians located in the foreign country of residence, demonstrating the applicant’s date of membership, usual language used and any other fact proving his/her knowledge of the Italian language;

g) any other documentation proving the applicant’s knowledge of the Italian language (e.g. copy of certificate of attendance of Italian-speaking schools, report cards, etc. ).

Children or direct descendants of people subject to Article 19 of the Paris Peace Treaty, who intend to avail themselves of Article 17-bis, paragraph 1, subparagraph b), shall attach the following documentation to their application for Italian citizenship:

- certification or other documentation proving that the applicant’s parent(s) or direct ancestor(s) met the requirements stated in points d-e-f-g above;

- certificate of birth confirming the applicant’s relationship with parent(s) or direct ancestor(s);

- certificate proving the applicant’s foreign citizenship;

- written confirmation from any association or community of Italians located in the applicant’s foreign country of residence proving the applicant’s knowledge of the Italian language and culture;

- any other documentation proving the claimant’s knowledge of the Italian language and culture.

B. People subject to the provisions of Article 3 of the Treaty of Osimo, formerly living in the so-called “Zone B” of the former Free Territory of Trieste

With a view to proving the existence of the requirements set in Article 17 bis, paragraph 1, subparagraph a), of Law No. 91/92, the following documents shall be attached to the application:

a) birth certificate, possibly based on the international model;

b) certificate demonstrating foreign citizenship;

c) certificate of current residence;

d) certificate or other documents proving residence and Italian citizenship on April 3, 1977 (date of the entry into force of the Treaty of Osimo);

e) written confirmation from any clubs, associations or communities of Italians located in the foreign country of residence, demonstrating the applicant’s date of membership, usual language used and any other fact proving his/her knowledge of the Italian language;

f) any other documentation proving the applicant’s belonging to the Italian ethnic group, as provided for by Article 3 above.

The children or direct descendants of people subject to Article 3 of the Osimo Treaty shall attach the following documentation to their application for Italian citizenship, submitted pursuant to Article 17-bis, paragraph 1, subparagraph b:

- certification or other documentation proving that the applicant’s parent(s) or direct ancestor(s) met the requirements stated in points d-e-f above;

- certificate of birth confirming the applicant’s relationship with parent(s) or direct ancestor(s);

- certificate proving the applicant’s foreign citizenship;

- written confirmation from any association or community of Italians located in the applicant’s foreign country of residence proving the applicant’s knowledge of the Italian language and culture;

- any other documentation proving the claimant’s knowledge of the Italian language and culture.

The applications submitted are examined by an interministerial committee set up within the Interior Ministry, which provides its opinion on the existence of the requirements set by law. If the opinion is favourable, the Interior Ministry issues authorization to the granting of citizenship.

LOSS OF CITIZENSHIP

Italian citizens can lose citizenship automatically or formally renouncing it.

A. Citizenship is lost automatically by:

1. any Italian citizen who voluntarily enlists in the armed forces of a foreign country or accepts a government post with a foreign State, despite express prohibition by Italian law (Article 12, paragraph 1, of Law No. 91/92);

2. any Italian citizen who served during a state of war with a foreign country, held a government post or acquired citizenship of that State (Article 12, paragraph 1, of Law No. 91/92);

3. adoptees for which adoption is revoked by fault of their own, provided they hold or acquire citizenship of another country (Article 3, paragraph 3, of Law No. 91/92).

B. Formal renunciation of Italian citizenship:

1. adoptees of legal age following revocation of adoption by fault of their own, provided they hold or reacquire citizenship of another country (Article 3, paragraph 4, of Law No. 91/92);

2. any Italian citizen living abroad and holding, acquiring or reacquiring citizenship of another country (Article 11 of Law No. 91/92);

3. any subject of legal age who acquired Italian citizenship as a minor, following the acquisition or reacquisition of citizenship from either parents, provided he/she holds citizenship of another country (Article 14 of Law No. 91/92).

In case of residence abroad, the declaration for renouncing citizenship is made to the competent consular authorities. It shall be accompanied by the following documentation:

a) birth certificate issued by the Municipality where the birth was registered;

b) certificate of Italian citizenship;

c) documentation of foreign citizenship;

d) documentation of residence abroad, where required.

Minors do NOT lose Italian citizenship if one or both parents lose it or reacquire foreign citizenship.

Women who, after January 1, 1948, automatically acquired foreign citizenship as a result of their marriage with foreign citizens or as a result of their Italian-born husbands becoming naturalized citizens of other countries did NOT lose their Italian citizenship. Nevertheless, in order to maintain the civil status records in order, those women (or their descendants) shall express their desire to maintain said citizenship to the competent consular authorities through a statement of uninterrupted possession of citizenship.

 


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