If you decide to obtain Italian citizenship you will not have to renounce your original citizenship as Italy recognises dual citizenship for many countries. Dual citizenship provides many benefits, such as making it easier to purchase property in Italy and gain access to more work opportunities.
In this guide, we explain the laws surrounding Italian dual citizenship and answer common queries on obtaining Italian dual citizenship.
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In 1992, Italy passed a law allowing those of Italian descent to lawfully obtain dual citizenship. Prior to this, Italian citizenship was exclusively for individuals born in Italy to Italian parents with few exceptions. This meant that the voluntary acquisition of a foreign citizenship automatically caused the loss of Italian citizenship. Dual citizenship was usually only able to be held by those who were born to an Italian parent (s) in another country and who gained their second citizenship involuntarily by birth.
Now, Italian law allows all Italian citizens, whether through acquired citizenship or born Italian, to explore the possibilities of a second passport without the concerns of the past regulations regardless of where they were born. Therefore, citizens of most countries can also obtain Italian nationality without having to renounce their current citizenship.
Yes, Italy permits British citizens to obtain dual Italian and British citizenship. Countries which do not currently allow dual citizenship in Italy include China, India, Japan, Thailand and the UAE.
Based on current laws, Italy recognises dual nationality and does not put any limit on the number of citizenships you may hold. This means an Italian citizen is allowed to have three or more passports as long as the other nations where they are citizens have similar laws that allow this.
If you are a UK citizen who is eligible to apply for Italian dual citizenship, the advantages of obtaining this are rich and often life-changing. Italian citizenship provides more rights than you are granted with permanent residence visa. Italian dual citizenship provides a wide range of benefits, including flexible travel in the EU, the ability to vote and access to a wider range of job opportunities in Italy.
Some of the key benefits of becoming an Italian dual citizen are as follows:
Enjoy quality, affordable education in Italy for you and your children.
As an Italian citizen, you can reside indefinitely in Italy and/or in any of the EU Member States, without any legal worries.
You are more attractive to employers, as there is less paperwork and cost involved. You also have the advantage of being a fluent English speaker, and being an Italian citizen as well as a British citizen will open up more job opportunities.
Being an Italian citizen allows you to have your say in how Italy grows and changes through voting.
As an Italian citizen, you get to enjoy the beautiful houses and apartments that Italy has to offer, and being an Italian citizen means it is much easier to own a property.
Find out more about the benefits of Italian dual citizenship here.
Scenic view of homes set into the steep hillside in the town of Positano on Italy's Amalfi Coast
You can qualify for Italian dual citizenship through the following methods:
If you have evidence of a connection to earlier generations of people born in Italy. This is often referred to as ‘jus sanguinis’, which means 'right of blood'. Your application can proceed on the basis of having the required documents related to relatives with Italian ancestry: death certificates or marriage certificates issued in Italy if applicable; Italian naturalisation certificates issued to relatives; or your own personal civil records.
If you marry an Italian citizen. To obtain an Italian passport through this method, you must have been married for two years while living in Italy or one year if you have minor children. You will need a marriage certificate to prove this. Find out more about obtaining Italian citizenship through marriage here.
Naturalisation. You can become a citizen of Italy if you have lived in the country with a legal visa for over ten years. This method is known as naturalisation, and is one of the most popular methods of obtaining Italian citizenship.
For more guidance on qualifying for Italian dual citizenship and the documents you need, you can read our guide on How to qualify for Italian dual citizenship.
Giambrone is an internationally known law firm that can help you with your Italian citizenship application. We can help you with documents that are unfamiliar to you. We will support you through completing and submitting any documentation you need to provide with your application. This ensures that there are no unnecessary delays during your application process. This also means you are less likely to be rejected due to incorrect or omitted paperwork.
An EU citizen can live, work and study in Italy without hindrance, however, individuals who come from countries outside the EU Member States can also gain residency status in Italy by working there or applying for a residency visa to live with a partner. This can progress to permanent residency. However, it is harder to get certain jobs and purchase property as a non-citizen, and you will also have fewer rights than Italian citizens, such as the right to vote.
Italy has income tax treaties in place to avoid double taxation, meaning you won’t be taxed for both countries.
The paperwork you need to support your application for Italian dual citizenship depends on the method of which you obtain citizenship. You can find out more about the paperwork you will need here.
Although prices can vary, the Italian government imposes a fee of approximately 300 euros for all Italian dual citizenship applications made outside of Italy. Everyone over the age of 18 must pay this fee.