How to Qualify for Italian Dual Citizenship

Are you eligible?

How to qualify for Italian dual citizenship


You might be an Italian citizen already and not know it! If you qualify, applying is nothing more than formally asking the Italian government to recognize a status you already have.

Figuring out your eligibility for Italian dual citizenship (aka Italian citizenship by descent) is simple if you know what to look for. Follow the guidelines below to discern whether you are able to get an Italian passport by descent. If you have any questions, you can always contact us.


Your ancestor was alive after March 17, 1861.

Before this date, Italy was not a country. And no Italy means no Italian citizenship! In order for your ancestor to have passed it down, s/he must have been alive - anywhere in the world - at some point after this date.


Did your ancestor become American? If so, check the dates.

If your ancestor became American, it must have been both after July 1, 1912 and after the birth of his/her child. If your ancestor never became American, you more than likely automatically qualify.

Women in your direct line? 1948 is an important year.

With few exceptions, women could not pass on Italian citizenship to children until January 1, 1948. If you have any women in your direct line, make sure she had her child on or after this date to successfully pass down citizenship.

 

Practical Examples

Child born in US, father born in Italy
You were born in the United States, and your father was still an Italian citizen at the time of your birth. You would qualify for Italian dual citizenship.
Child born in US, father born in Italy
You were born in the United States after January 1, 1948, and your mother was still an Italian citizen at the time of your birth. You would qualify for Italian dual citizenship.
Child born in US, father born in US, grandfather born in Italy
You were born in the United States, your father was born in the US, and your grandfather was still an Italian citizen at the time of your father's birth. You and your father would qualify for Italian dual citizenship.
Child born in US, mother born in US, grandmother born in Italy
You were born in the United States After January 1, 1948, your mother was born in the US after January 1, 1948, and your grandmother was still an Italian citizen at the time of your mother's birth. You and your mother would qualify for Italian dual citizenship.
Woman married to an Italian citizen man before April 27, 1983
Before April 27, 1983 foreign women who married Italian men (and men eligible for Italian dual citizenship themselves) automatically became Italian citizens. If you married before this date, you are entitled to Italian dual citizenship.
Great grandparents and further
There are no generational limits on Italian dual citizenship. As long as you meet the above criteria, you can qualify no matter how many generations you go back.