A noncommercial collection of information about citizenship, dual citizenship and multiple citizenship

[Please refer to How to Read a Country Entry for help interpreting this material. It was produced prior to March 2001 as part of a US government report entitled Citizenship Laws of the World. The accuracy and depth of these country listings varies significantly, and some information may be incorrect. At best, this page presents only part of the story for a particular country. Additional information for this country may be available in Country Information]


CITIZENSHIP: Citizenship law is based upon the Italian Law on Nationality amended February 5, 1992.

BY BIRTH: Birth within the territory of Italy does not confer citizenship. Exceptions: A child born to unknown parents, and a child born in Italy, who resides there legally and uninterruptedly until reaching age 18, and who specifically requests Italian citizenship.

BY DESCENT: Child, at least one of whose parents is an Italian citizen, regardless of the child's country of birth. Italian law makes provisions for citizenship to be granted to persons with specific familial ties to Italy.

MARRIAGE: Person who marries an Italian national is eligible for citizenship unless person has been involved in any criminal proceeding.

BY NATURALIZATION: Certain persons may acquire Italian citizenship upon completion of these periods of legal residency: Three years for those with familial ties to Italy. Four years for nationals of the European Community. Five years for refugees, foreigners of legal age adopted by Italians, and persons who worked abroad in the service of Italy. Ten years for others not falling into above categories.

DUAL CITIZENSHIP: RECOGNIZED. Amendment dated August 16, 1992, states those Italian citizens who acquire U.S. citizenship will retain Italian citizenship unless they voluntarily renounce their Italian citizenship.


VOLUNTARY: Voluntary renunciation is permitted by Italian law, though is not required when acquiring a foreign citizenship. Contact Embassy for details and required paperwork.

INVOLUNTARY: The following is grounds for involuntary loss of Italian citizenship: Person voluntarily chooses to serve in the military of a foreign state, especially during a declared state of war.


Google: Embassy Italy "Consular Section"



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