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First of all, Italian citizenship is based not on place of birth but on Italian blood line as is the case in almost all of Europe. Second, Italy is not granting citizenship to third or forth generation of children of Italian immigrants born in foreign countries, but recognizing according to current law they are already citizens of Italy. This law is good

I was married to an Italian immigrant for over 3 years and we had a daughter together. Does anyone know if I qualify for Italian citizenship even though we are now divorced? I think my daughter is automatically an Italian Citizen?

I would qualify on my own by virtue of my maternal Italian Great Grandfather, but my mother was born before the 1948 law was passed allowing for citizenship qualification via the maternal bloodlines.

ampah benedetta

hi,i was born in Italy(verona).my parents are Ghanaians i just turned 18 this year and i want to know if i can acquire an italian passport or citizenship.
thank you.

Emma Bird

Hi Ampah

Thanks for your question.

Have you always lived in Italy or were you only born here?

Under the article 4, comma 2, of the law 5 February 1992, n. 91, you can apply for citizenship if you were born in Italy and have lived here without interruption up until turning 18. In order to do this, you will have to produce your birth certificate, documentation from the anagrafe in the comune in which you are resident and your parents' permesso di soggiorno with your name inserted in it. If they did not take this step, you will have to show school enrollment forms and medical certification to prove that you have always lived here.

Again sorry for the delay in getting back to you but I've been unable to access comments left on the blog.

Hope this is the information you were after, Ampah


I was borned in Italy in 1974 while my father was working there, My father has a residence for 15 years in italy but he never claimed for a citizenship. none of my Father or mother has the italin nationality, Do i have a chance to get the Italian citizenship? knowing that i lived there for my first 4 years only?


Hello Emma,
My grandparents on my father's side were both born in Italy. I am in the process of collecting and translating all the appropriate documents to submit to the General Consulate in Chicago for my citizenship application. If/When I get citizenship, I am hoping that it will help me obtain a career in Italy more easily. I would like to move to Italy and bring my family, but from what I understand, unemployment is relatively high right now and they are looking more to hire citizens as opposed to foreigners. I am more sharing than asking a question, but do you have any tips on expediting the process?
Thank you,


my gradfather was an italian, but my father born in the States.
is it possible for me to acquire an italian citizenship?


Mt step-father and half sisters are all Italian and my mother is Italian through marriage. Could I qualify for Italian citizenship?


> "First of all, Italian citizenship is based not on place of birth but on Italian blood line as is the case in almost all of Europe"

> Exactly, based on blood line (jus sanguinis) OR marriage (don't forget). Also, Italy allows the possibility of holding a dual citizenship, which not all European countries do (e.g. Germany).

Instead of being all shocked by the principles and laws that regulate the acquisition of Italian citizenship, I recommend reflecting on the different nature of the concept of "citizenship" in an "ancient" country like Italy (that has been inhabited for tens of thousands of years by its native people) vs. a "young" country like the U.S. (a land of immigration, a land whose population is composed mostly of non-natives that have lived there at longest of a couple of centuries and, last but not least, a nation to which people - at least in theory - CHOSE to move).

It is a good idea for expats to be a little "culturally relativistic" and observe their new country of residence from a geographical/historical perspective, instead of trying to superimpose the culture of their native country to the place to which they have moved.

Also, think about the other side of the coin: I am Italian, and my American husband has a RIGHT to Italian citizenship, while I had to apply for a green card (which could have been denied to me), and I will have to apply for U.S. citizenship as well (which might also be denied).

On the subject of children, just think about foreign-born children of U.S. citizens: Some of them will have to apply for U.S. citizenship anyway, just because they were not born on U.S. soil: Does that sound any less absurd than your example?

Plus, in order to have a "second generation" of Italians, you would have to have a "first generation," but their parents are not Italian citizens either!

I agree, however, that the U.S. is doing a far better and more respectful/humane job of dealing with immigrants and integration issues than most European countries.


Emma Bird

Lots of comments here!

Markho, unfortunately, no, you can't apply for citizenship as you didn't live in Italy long enough and your father only had a work permit - he wasn't an Italian citizen.

Michelle, because your mother has acquired Italian citizenship and isn't a blood line, then you aren't eligible for citizenship. I'm sorry. Have I dashed your hopes there?

Emma Bird

Ciao Giulia

Thanks for stopping by. You made some interesting points.

However, I do think that there's a difference between fourth generation Americans applying and first generation Italians. I was simply making the point that kids in the US and UK who are born to foreign parents automatically get the citizenship of their country of birth as well as their parents' citizenship. That's something that doesn't happen here.

When you see 18-year-old students who were born in Italy, have lived in Italy all their life and have strong regional accents, it does seem a little crazy that they risk being expelled from the country because they're not legal.


Wait Michelle-
Before you give up hope, remember that Italy is a country of endless red-tape, and about a million ways to get around it! I'm an Italian citizen thanks to first. When I remarried years later and had a child with a British citizen (who was born and lived his entire life in Italy), they simply handed my US-born son citizenship, yet refused his father. To this day I wonder if the lack of rhyme or reason is due to human error, faulty organisation or luck. I wish you the best of it!

Lucy Perez


I am a New Zealander who has lived in Italy for 6 years. My husband is Spanish. We have three children, only one of which was born in Italy. Can anyone tell me what the requirements are for us to acquire italian citizenship?


Emma Bird

Hi Lucy

Why do you want to acquire Italian citizenship? EU citizens have the same rights as Italian citizens (bar voting) so why not apply for Spanish citizenship through your husband?

Your child, if he/she is under 18, cannot apply for citizenship until becoming an adult. Equally, your younger children cannot apply for Italian citizenship either. However, assuming they are half-Spanish, they wouldn't really need to.

Hope that helps


I was born in italy about 27 years ago by non italian citizens,after my birth i lived in italy for about 5 years before i was taken to my parent's country. things went very bad and i lost contact with my parents, i was able to find my way back to italy and now i have problems with getting italian citizenship or even a soggiorno so i stand a risk of deportation, Please i need an advice as to how i can get italian citizenship or if i can even just get a document that will permit me to live and work in italy legally, thanks

antonella rubini

could you please advise me I was born in Italy 1962 arrived in australia in 1967 on my mothers passport which she handing in when she became an australian citizen how do I get a passport. your help will be appreciated


I am a Bangladeshi male married a girl who hold Italian resident status . Can I aquire the same?



If your stepfather adopted you, which you can legally do, and you hold his last name, I'm pretty sure you would be able to obtain citizenship this way. I recommend you ask a more knowledgeable community on an Italian citizenship forum. They could definitely help you with your question more than I could. Visit:


Hope this helps and good luck!


The idea of individuals outside of Italy receiving Italian citizenship is not absurd. The way citizenship is acquired is through blood, not from where you were born. This means that through each generation the citizenship is passed down. Of course there are certain things that must fall in place in order for a person to have had it passed down. For example, the father did not naturalize before his child was born. It is also easier to receive it through the father's side of the family rather than the mother's. Up until 1948, mothers were not able to pass it down according to Italian LAW. From birth, you are actually born as an Italian citizen, but must produce documents before a government site to formally recognize it.

Hope this helps you understand a little better. I do feel sorry for those who are born there but are not citizens and eventually may face deportation.


My grandfather was born in Italy but moved to the US before he was one years old.
Is it possiable to get Italian citizenship? I have family that I have visited in in southern Italy. I would like to buy a place in the town one day.



hello, I have a question.
Is there any chance that students can apply for citizenship in Italy?
How long you shouls stay and work in Italy to get the Citizenship?
thank you


I had a question about the citizenship. I was born here in the U.S. and my husband is an italian citizen if he gets the us citizenship can I get the Italian citizenship if we live here in the U.S. and how long will it take me to get it?

Phyllis R. Walker

my great-grandmother gave birth to my grandmother will in the united states in 1909she did not naturalize and died an italian citizen and if I'm correct my grandmother was both a citizen of the U.S. and Italy. Does that also apply to my mother when she was born and on down to me?


hi, my mom is been a immigrant in italy for 20years and now she is planning to apply for citizen..and she was asking if she can petition me..im 26yrs and im not married.she wants me to live with her..is there a adult petition in italy?how long it will take the waiting period?
thanks a lot. hope to hear from u..


could you please tell me if I qualify for the Italian citizenship only because I was born in Rome, Italy on 1969

Anouchka Chenegadoo

i´m a mauritian from mauritius island,am married now 3 years with a italian man.we have a daughter together and we live now in germany. i would like to know how can i get the italian citizenship and how long will i be able to apply for a italian passport. cause i still have my mauritius passport

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