If you are a citizen of the United States with Italian heritage, you may qualify for dual citizenship in Italy. Harris Beach’s Italian citizenship attorneys can help you determine if you are eligible and conduct the work necessary for you to achieve dual citizenship.

Since 1992, Italy has allowed dual citizenship with the United States, and applicants do not have to renounce their U.S. citizenship. Italian citizenship is based upon the principle of “jure sanguinis,” which is Latin for “blood right.” To qualify, an applicant must prove Italian ancestry with a demonstrable unbroken line of citizenship.

The benefits to dual citizenship are many. Citizens of Italy have access to the country’s education and health care systems. They can travel work and live freely, not only in Italy, but in any of the 27 European Union countries. They can buy property in Italy and vote in Italy’s elections. They can also pass citizenship on to their children and future generations.

Who Qualifies for Italian Dual Citizenship?

A citizen of the United States might qualify for dual Italian citizenship if they were born in Italy, are descended from a parent, grandparent, great grandparent, etc. who was an Italian citizen, or are married to an Italian citizen for at least three years.

To become an Italian citizen via marriage, you’ll need to demonstrate basic knowledge of Italy’s language and culture. You also need to prove you have no criminal record. You’ll need records such as a marriage certificate, passport, birth certificates and more.

The qualifications based on Italian heritage are complicated and involve key dates in Italy’s history. You’ll likely need birth, death, marriage and other documents to prove your case.

How can Harris Beach Help Me Achieve Italian Dual Citizenship?

Harris Beach provides comprehensive legal services to New York and New Jersey residents who want to apply for dual Italian citizenship. Our New York-based Immigration attorneys have deep experience with this process and have helped many:

  • Obtain birth, death, marriage, divorce and other genealogical records
  • Amend or correct vital records
  • Request declaratory judgments on missing birth, marriage or divorce certificates
  • Request one and the same declarations
  • File petitions to reclaim the family’s original name
  • File applications to obtain U.S. naturalization documents or letters stipulating no records exist
  • File citizenship applications, including to the town of residence in Italy

How Much Does it Cost to Apply for Italian Dual Citizenship?

The cost of applying for Italian dual citizenship depends on several factors, including the number of generations between you and your Italian ancestor. You may have to pay filing fees and fees for documents and translation services. There are costs, but they are not prohibitive. Some people can obtain citizenship for as little as a few hundred dollars, while others may pay a few thousand.

Harris Beach’s Italian citizenship lawyers are well-schooled in the requirements for Italian citizenship. They’ll help you determine if you qualify for Italian citizenship and what documents you need to apply. They’ll also help if you have missing records necessary for Italian dual citizenship.

If you are interested in connecting with your Italian heritage and enjoying the benefits of Italian dual citizenship, please reach out to our Italian citizenship attorney Ross B. Hofherr at (212) 313-5482 and rhofherr@harrisbeach.com, or the Harris Beach attorney with whom you most frequently work.

This alert is not a substitute for advice of counsel on specific legal issues.

Harris Beach has offices throughout New York state, including Albany, Buffalo, Ithaca, Long Island, New York City, Rochester, Saratoga Springs, Syracuse and White Plains, as well as New Haven, Connecticut, Newark, New Jersey, and Washington, D.C.