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I am an American with Italian lineage and I'd like to know what steps can be taken (if possible) to apply for citizenship in Italy. I've read several blogs however, the steps are a bit unclear. Please direct me to the correct starting point.

Thanks so much!

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Hi Shelley. Great question. I did some research for a friend a few years ago, and I called the Italian Consulate here. They are most helpful.

Here's what I remember. You need to identify the grandparents/great-grandparents who were born in Italy. I think you'll have to dig up their birth certificates. Then I think you'll have to determine if they relinquished their Italian citizenship at some point. Using myself as an example, my mother's father became a citizen when he fought for the US in World War I. He relinquished his allegiance to the Italian king at that point -- so while I haven't asked, my understanding is that I couldn't apply for Italian citizenship through that family line. Now, my great grandfather on my father's side was a stowaway, I've heard, so maybe I can go through that line! Ha.

There's more involved, of course, and it will take time. But my understanding is, you can't pursue citizenship through a line that relinquished it earlier.
Genna went through the same process a few years ago. She had to trace back naturalization papers for her grandparents. You guys should talk. Rules may have changed though.
My sister and I just applied for citizenship in SF last month - (both of our grandparents were born in Italy). You first have to see if you qualify and then start gathering all the docs if you do.

First thing to do is look at the Consulate checklist and application process here: (click on Jure Sanguinis link to download the word doc with all the info)

For further information, there are two really great forums that I used immensely during the process: (Dual Citizenship)

Good luck!
Thank you Mike, This is exactly what I was looking for : )
Gook luck!
Roughly: If the male ancestor who immigrated from Italy relinquished his Italian citizenship to become an American citizen before his descendants were born the blood line is interrupted and the Italian citizenship cannot be transmitted to descendants.The same applies for descendants of Italian women born after January 1 1948. More detailed information cam be obtained from the citizenship department o f the Italian Consulate General in San Francisco please refer to our website – consular services - citizenship.
Thanks so much! I'll get started right away.
One should first of all visit an Italian Consulate web site which contains a rather complete explanation for those that know nothing or little about the process, This may seem obvious but you would be surprised the number of people that do not take this first step.

Italian Legal Langauge Services
Novato, CA
FYI, there is a new Italian Citizenship message board here: The old ICGS board is pretty much all spam now, so this is a much better resource in addition to Italylink forum.

The best way to answer your question is to go under the website of the Italian Consulate and find out if you qualify for an Italian citizenship. 

Good luck



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