How to translate documents into Italian

Applying for Italian citizenship can provide many benefits,from access to high-quality and often free education to a whole wealth of job opportunities. You will also be able to live in Italy, move more freely between European Union countries, and take part in the Italian democratic process with the right to vote.

Aside from these very practical benefits, you will also enjoy a country rich in beautiful landscapes, incredible history, and wonderful culture.

However, before you become an Italian citizen, you will need to provide translations, in Italian, of the relevant documents. This is a key part of applying for Italian citizenship. It can be quite straightforward.

Below we outline the documents you will need to present to apply for Italian citizenship and which of those documents need to be translated into Italian. We will explain how to translate documents and the reasons they may be rejected, as well as advising on how you can get help with this process.

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The documents you need to prepare to apply for Italian citizenship.

Which documents will need to be translated into Italian?

Our guide to getting your documents translated into Italian and where to find a translator.

How we can assist in preparing your application.

We answer frequently asked questions on translating documents into Italian.

Which documents do you need to apply for Italian citizenship?

The documents required to apply will be different based on the method of application.

If applying through marriage, you will be required to provide a copy of your marriage certificate, and you are also required to provide a B1 language proficiency certificate to demonstrate your capacity to speak Italian. In addition to this, you will need a certified copy of your birth certificate, a criminal record check to demonstrate that you do not have a criminal record, together with your Italian spouse’s ID card. Ensure that you have evidence of payment of the application fee, such as a bank transfer from your payment to the Ministero dell’Interno. 

For more guidance, read our full guide to applying for Italian citizenship through marriage.

If you are applying through descent, it is necessary to provide sight of your passport, your birth certificate, the birth certificates of your parents or relative (and death certificates if relevant), as well as any marriage or divorce records. You will also need the birth certificates of your children.

When applying through naturalisation, you will be required to have been legally living in Italy for ten years (unless you qualify for an exception to these rules). It is also required that you are working under a visa and are a presence within your community - with definite proof of this. 

Do you need to provide proof of residence for your application? Read our full guide here.

Which documents need to be translated into Italian?

Depending on the type of application for citizenship in Italy, the documents required may vary, other than those vital records such as birth certificates and passports. Whichever documents you need to provide, they must be authenticated by means of an  Apostille by The Legalisation Office and translated into Italian. The Legalisation Office, based in the UK, can only legalise documents from within the UK, however. There is a fee for this, plus courier fees.

The translation of British documents will be certified by the Italian Consulate in London. You are able to book appointments online with the Italian Consulate.

How to translate documents into Italian

The options available to translate documents from English to Italian vary, if you are based in Italy, you may use a sworn translator in Italy or have a pre-prepared translation certified by one of the Italian law courts or Italian "comuni" (town halls).

However, if you are based in the UK, you may wish to have your documents translated by a professional UK translator. This will then need to be legalised both by a British notary public and then also by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Why can translated documents be rejected?

There are several reasons why your translated documents may not be accepted - keeping within the requirements will reduce the chances of this happening.

Your documents can be rejected if you provide a copy rather than the original documents requested. They may also be rejected if you have DIY translations (such as those made by a friend or relative) rather than using a certified translation service.

Another reason your documents may be rejected is inadequate translation. This is unlikely if you have used a certified service, but it is important to be certain that the translation is clear and of high quality.

How Giambrone can assist in preparing your application

Preparing your application can be challenging and in order to reduce your chances of rejection. Giambrone can help guide you through the process with clear advice to help prevent your documents from being rejected.

Our immigration lawyers are highly knowledgeable on all aspects of cross-border laws and the requirements of different countries. We can help to guide you through the steps to take when applying for Italian citizenship, and our experienced legal team will be on hand to answer any queries you may have along the way.

Do you need some advice on preparing your application? Get in touch to discuss your needs now, or find out how we can help you here.


Frequently asked questions

Which parts of the documents need to be translated?

The documents must be translated in full.

What documents are necessary when applying for Italian citizenship?

The kind of documents you will need to provide depends on the route of application.

How easy is it to get an Italian passport?

The process of obtaining an Italian passport can be protracted if you are unsure of what is required. With the correct advice and information it is straightforward.

Can you live in Italy without being a citizen?

It is possible to live in Italy without being a citizen if you apply for a visa. However, if you are planning to live in Italy long term it is best to apply for citizenship as you will enjoy all the benefits that citizenship provides.

What documents do you need to apply for dual citizenship?

For British/Italian dual citizenship, you will need your birth certificate and that of your Italian ancestors, their death certificates if relevant, marriage certificates, naturalisation certificates if applicable and your own personal civil records.

What are the advantages of becoming an Italian citizen?

Becoming an Italian citizen gives you access to more job and education opportunities, as well as allowing you to vote in elections in Italy.

How long does it take to get Italian citizenship by descent?

It can take up to three years to complete the process, depending on whether there are any problems that arise.

Do you qualify for Italian citizenship?

You may qualify for Italian citizenship if you have valid ties to Italian ancestry, have married an Italian citizen, or have been living and working in Italy for ten years.

How do you apply for Italian citizenship by descent?

You will need to prove your Italian heritage with documents related to your Italian relatives (parents or grandparents), as well as your own vital records such as a birth certificate.

What documents are needed to pass on Italian citizenship to your child?

You must provide your birth certificate, your Italian naturalisation certificate, your child's birth certificate, and any relevant marriage, divorce or death records relating to the child's other parent.

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