The European Union (previously known as the European Community) was founded after the Second World War to ensure peace in the region and to economically unite the nations of Europe.
The Single European Act (1986) and the Treaty on European Union (1992) introduced the idea of Economic and Monetary Union (EMU) and laid the foundations for a single currency known as the euro. In January of 1999, the euro was introduced though EU citizens continued to use their national currency until euro bank notes and coins were put into circulation on January 1, 2002.
As an Italian and an American citizen, you will be effectively cleared for employment both within the U.S. and within the greater European Union.
Currently, single citizenship Americans cannot legally work in the E.U. without a visa or sponsorship from their employer. As an E.U. citizen, you would enjoy the full rights and benefits of your Italian passport. This means you don't need sponsorship for employment, and would be considered a part of the local European candidate pool.
For people with unique skills or backgrounds, this is an immense plus as it allows you to compete for a job without adding an extra burden on a potential employer.
Health care in Italy is extremely affordable, even by European Union standards. Though the standard of care varies from region to region (just like state to state in the U.S.), Italian citizens can all expect an affordable, high standard of care. To find out more about Italian health care services, please visit http://italy.angloinfo.com/healthcare/health-system/.
By and large, the answer is yes.
Education in Italy (and the greater European Union) is far more affordable than education in the United States. There are many world class institutions in the E.U. which charge students very nominal fees. There is one catch: many of these institutions charge different fees for E.U. citizens and everyone else.
As a dual Italian citizen, you would be entitled to the discounted European student rates. For an example, if you wanted to use your Italian citizenship to study in the Netherlands, you would pay around 2,000 euros a year. Contrast that with a single citizenship American who would pay over 15,000. Beyond that, being an Italian (and therefore, European) citizen entitles you to more local financial aid not open to students from other parts of the world.
Italian and European Union governments provide generous pensions for citizens who have spent the requisite number of years in their workforce. If you have worked in the U.S. for most of your life and are considering retiring in Italy or the European Union, being an Italian citizen makes life much easier, from gaining access to health care to purchasing a home.
This is one of the greatest benefits of being an Italian citizen. Having an Italian passport is like having a passport to any EU country, allowing you to live anywhere within its borders. Under the terms of Article 17 (ex Article 8) of the Treaty on the European Union, "any person holding the nationality of a member state is a citizen of the Union." "EU citizenship, which supplements national citizenship without replacing it, grants citizens the right to move freely and to reside on the territory of the member states" (Article 18).
As an EU citizen, you can go into business with much greater ease. The EU is a single economic zone with a common currency and a population greater than that of the United States, presenting a unique opportunity for freelancers and entrepreneurs. Restrictions on non-EU citizens are onerous. Holding Italian citizenship allows you to avoid many bureaucratic hassles.
In addition, Italian citizenship will allow you to invest in offshore mutual funds and securities without restriction or hindrance, as very few foreign companies are registered to sell their securities in the United States. Foreign brokers will not sell unregistered securities for fear of running afoul of the SEC. If you want these securities, it is sometimes essential to have a foreign identity.
Another benefit of Italian citizenship is that you can pass it on to your children for an indefinite number of generations, giving them the possibility to migrate to any country in the European Union.
Not usually, no. Since the U.S. is a jus soli country (meaning that all those born on U.S. soil are automatically considered citizens), the citizenship rules of the U.S. (jus soli) and Italy (jure sanguinis) do not interfere with one another.
According to the principle of jure sanguinis, you have actually been an Italian citizen since birth (if you qualify). Obtaining dual citizenship through ancestry is not the same as obtaining it through voluntary naturalization, which in some cases can result in the loss of your native citizenship.
In The U.S., Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa, and the United Kingdom, being recognized as an Italian citizen jure sanguinis will not affect your current citizenship.
However, if you are a dual citizen of the United States and another country you may not be eligible for government jobs which require security clearance.
Assuming you contact us today to get started, it generally takes 4 to 8 weeks for me to obtain your ancestor's birth, marriage or death certificate from Italy (sometimes longer). The time it takes to obtain your birth, marriage and death certificates in your state varies, and some vital statistics offices allow you to expedite requests for a fee. You can request your certificates through me from Italy and from your state or province at the same time, allowing the waiting periods to coincide. Once the documents from your state have arrived, you may have to wait a few more weeks for apostilles and legalizations, though it often takes less time if you go in person.
You will then need to translate your American documents into Italian, though this may be done by scanning your originals and sending them to me while you actually send them off for apostilles.
Your actual application can be done in a day. The biggest question is how long it will take to obtain an appointment, and how long it will take the consulate to process your application once you attend your appointment and hand everything in. My experience has shown that it can take anywhere from 6 months to 9 years to obtain and application and have your citizenship approved. I recommend giving yourself a few months to obtain all your documents before you apply for an appointment.
For those seeking to obtain their Italian citizenship faster, applying directly in Italy is often much quicker. On average, my clients have waited two to three months from date of application to date of approval of citizenship if they applied in Italy, however wait times of up to 1 year are not out of the question.
When applying, you can go to your appointment with siblings and/or first cousins. This requires very little extra paperwork and only one set of certificates for each family's application. For example, if I applied for Italian citizenship with my brother, we'd use the same set of certificates, with the exception of my and my brother's birth and marriage certificates. However, you must make the appointment for every person in your party (the consulates do not like surprises and do not want you to show up with an unexpected relative).
The total price varies depending on how many certificates and translations you need, whether you are applying in the U.S. or Italy, and whether or not you want me to complete your entire application from start to finish for you. Italian birth, marriage and death certificates cost $185 to obtain, and translations are $60 per page (discounts are available). In addition, there is now a 300 euro fee for applying for Italian citizenship, payable directly to the Italian consulate.
I recommend budgeting anywhere from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars for the entire process depending on whether or not you are obtaining all your documentation for yourself vs. having a service provider compile everything for you, applying at a consulate, or applying in Italy, etc.
When you travel, be sure to bring both your native passport and your Italian one with you. When leaving your native country, show your native passport. While on the plane, put away your native passport and take out the Italian passport, which you should use when entering the EU or Italy.
It's not illegal for you two carry two passports, but it's usually best not to mention it. You won't get into trouble as you are acting in full accordance with U.S. law and the U.S. allows dual citizenship, but lower level customs officials may not be aware of this fact. As a result, you might be delayed while s/he checks with a supervisor.
If you apply via the consulate, you will receive notification directly from them. Though this may vary from country to country, you will probably receive a package at your home address including a cover letter stating that you have been recognized as an Italian citizen, an application for an Italian passport and an application for A.I.R.E.
If you apply in Italy, you will receive a letter stating you are an Italian citizen or notification from us. We will then let the comune know that they must transcribe your records so that you may obtain your Italian passport and identify card.
Only since 1992. On February 5, 1992, the Italian government passed a law (no. 91, art. 11) stating that any Italian citizen who acquired or reacquired a foreign citizenship after August 15, 1992 would not lose his or her Italian citizenship.
Not at all. Italian citizenship jure sanguinis is your birthright. You need only prove your lineage to a qualifying Italian citizen.
However, residency (even temporary) is required when wishing to apply directly in Italy as opposed to applying at your local consulate.
If your children are under eighteen (18) they automatically receive citizenship upon your successful application (and you must provide their birth certificates when you apply). If they are over the age of 18 and qualify, they must apply on their own.
Yes. If you are eligible for Italian dual citizenship, this means that you have actually been an Italian citizen by birth and the obtaining of a passport is a way to make it recognized by law.
This means that in theory, your spouse has been married to an Italian citizen the entire time. Italian law states that spouses of Italian citizens can apply for citizenship after six months of marriage if a couple is living in Italy and after three years of marriage if they are living abroad. Consider a person living outside of Italy who has already been married for over three years. Once he or she is recognized as an Italian citizen jure sanguinis, the spouse may apply for Italian citizenship immediately! Why? Because the Italian has been a citizen since birth and the couple has been married for over three years.
It depends. Unlike the United States, Italy does not automatically confer citizenship to people born in its territory. You may or may not be entitled to Italian dual citizenship if you were born in Italy.
1. Italian citizens by birth who never became naturalized citizens of their adopted country are eligible for an Italian passport. Contact the nearest Italian embassy or consulate for details.
2. Italian citizens who were naturalized in their adopted country prior to August 15, 1992, implicitly renouncing their right to Italian citizenship, can reinstate it by returning to Italy and residing there legally for at least one year.
3. Italian citizens who became naturalized citizens of their adopted country after August 15, 1992, retained their Italian citizenship unless they expressly renounced it. They are required to personally inform the Italian consulate of becoming citizens within ninety days, or when they reach their 18th birthday, otherwise they risk a fine.
This is not a negative for your application, but you must prove that your ancestor did not naturalize.
If you ancestor immigrated to the United States, some consulates will accept a "Certificate of No Record" from the U.S. Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) as proof that your ancestor did not naturalize. Some other consulates require two certificates in addition to the aforementioned USCIS "No Record" certificate:
1. A statement of "NO RECORDS" from the National Archives. Request a full research under your ancestor's name and nicknames, and possible dates of birth which may have been declared.
2. A survey report from a census dated after the date of birth of your ancestor's child.
Before applying, be sure to check with your consulate of jurisdiction re: which certificates will be necessary in your Italian citizenship jure sanguinis application. If applying in Italy using our services, you may use the NARA documentation or the USCIS combination, or any combination thereof.
You can do this in a number of ways.
First, www.ancestry.com is an invaluable source of information. Try searching for your ancestor's name and other pertinent information and see if you can come up with documentation regarding his or her naturalization. Failing that, you can:
1. Run a search of NARA's records by visitng their website or calling the nearest NARA location.
2. Run a search at USCIS. You will first have to search for an index number and then once you obtain the index number, you can search for the actual record.
3. Contact the county clerk of the county in which your ancestor may have naturalized for further information.
2. Supporting records from the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA)
If you are able to get certified records from the NARA and there are no major discrepancies between this and your ascendants other records, this and the certificate above should be enough proof, otherwise you’ll need to go to the county or state courthouse where the naturalization took place (or where your ancestor lived). Note: a certified copy differs from a regular copy in that all the records are affixed by a red ribbon with a gold seal. When the consulate requests records "with the red ribbon" this is what they are referring to.
IF YOU CAN'T OBTAIN ANY OF THE ABOVE, YOU'LL NEED TO LOOK FOR THE FOLLOWING:
Supporting records from state or county courts. For naturalizations that were issued by a state or county court, you’ll need to go to the courthouse that issued it to get a certified copy. If your relative did not naturalize, you may need to get a statement of no record from the county courts where your relative lived. If you are able to get a certified copy from a courthouse, this, along with the certificate, should be sufficient but again, always double check with your consulate for their exact requirements.
Supporting records from state or county historical societies or archive offices. Some counties and states have released all of their naturalization records to local historical societies or archives offices. If this happened to your relatives records, in most cases, you should be able to get certified copies. Also request they send you a certified custodial agreement/letter (signed by a registrar of records, with appropriate letterhead and notarization) stating that the county or state released the naturalization documents to them.
Certified census and other records: If there are discrepancies you are concerned about or you are unable to track down records from the above organizations, you’ll likely need to get a certified copy of the census record issued immediately after your first U.S. born ascendant was born from NARA. For example, if you are requesting citizenship through your great grandfather -> grandfather where your great grandfather was born in Italy and your grandfather was born in the U.S. in, say 1915, you’ll want to get a copy of the 1920 census which lists both of them. There may be other records you can provide as additional proof, such as World War I and World War II registration records, ship passenger lists, etc. Basically, any record that still shows your Italian born ascendant as an Italian citizen after your U.S. born ascendant was born will help in this situation.
Statement of ‘No Record’ from the above organizations: If the above organizations cannot find the naturalization record for your ascendant, request they send you a statement of no record that lists the search criteria they used. The statement of no record should be certified, with the appropriate letter head, signed by a custodian of records (ask them to include their title) and notarized. If there are are possible spelling variations for your relative’s name, be sure to let the organization know for their search.
If any of the organizations cannot find the record, you will want to request a statement of no record, signed by a custodian of records (ask them to include their title or include a statement that they have access to the register of naturalizations), with appropriate letterhead and notarization to include in the packet you give to the consulate.