Italian dual citizenship: what’s the difference between applying in Italy and at a consulate?March 15, 2018
Are there drawbacks to obtaining Italian dual citizenship?May 8, 2018
Do you need a lawyer to get Italian dual citizenship?
Probably not, but it depends.
Most people who apply for Italian dual citizenship do not need an attorney. These applicants are free to apply through the normal channels: i.e. at the consulate in their respective country of residence, or directly in Italy after establishing residency there.
But some people do need an attorney to apply for Italian dual citizenship. You may need a lawyer to get Italian dual citizenship if you fall under one or more of these three categories:
- You have a “1948 case.” Before January 1, 1948 women could not pass on Italian citizenship. This means that if you have any female in your line of citizenship, you must check to make sure her child was born after January 1, 1948. If your female ancestors had children before this date, you are a 1948 case. People who fall under this category must hire an Italian attorney to try their case at the court level in Italy. Essentially, they will ask the Italian government to recognize as unconstitutional the law not allowing women to pass on citizenship before that date. Then, the courts will retroactively award citizenship to all descendants of that woman. You do not need to be present in Italy for a 1948 case, and more than one family member can join a case.
- If you have excessive discrepancies. Excessive discrepancies in your documents may necessitate the assistance of an attorney. An attorney can petition the courts to obtain an order of one and the same person (also known by similar names). A judge will look at all of your documents and the evidence presented, and issue an order declaring that all the discrepancies refer to the same person or people.
- If you need to obtain the birth certificate of a deceased person in New York State. New York State has some of the most restrictive laws when it comes to obtaining vital records. If you have a deceased antecedent whose birth certificate you need to obtain, you will need a court order. Note: This does not apply to New York City, which has different laws. You can obtain the birth certificate of a deceased person in New York City, as long as you provide a copy of their death certificate first and are an eligible party to receive the document.