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Citizenship

CITIZENSHIP (Law 5 February 1992 n.91)

 

A)    WHAT TO DO IF YOU ARE 18-19 YEARS OF AGE (AT THE MUNICIPALITY)

Those born in Italy to foreign parents do not automatically acquire Italian citizenship but keep that of their parent’s until the18th year of age.

The current regulation establishes that “a foreign person born in Italy, and who has resided here legally and without interruption until reaching the 18th year of age, becomes an Italian citizen if he declares the will to acquire Italian citizenship within a year of the aforementioned date”.

The person therefore has a year (from 18 to 19 years old) to apply for Italian citizenship. In order to do so, they will go to the Ufficio di Stato Civile (Civil Registrar) of the municipality in which they are resident and present a dichiarazione di volontà (declaration of will).

After having verified their prerequisites, the Civil Registrar will register the new citizen in the civil registry and get them to swear loyalty to the Italian Republic. Italian citizenship is then officially acquired.

 

A1) Documents to present:
1. receipt of payment of the required contribution of € 200 to current account 809020 of the Ministry of the Interior
2. a valid passport
3. an intact copy of the applicant’s birth certificate
4. a residence permit. In the event of the permit showing discontinuity, the applicant will present documents which can prove his continuous stay in Italy (e.g. school or medical documents etc)
5. a “certificato storico di residenza (historical residence certificate) for the entire period the person has lived in the municipality, showing all different addresses at which the person has lived.

In the event of late registration with the civil registrar at an Italian municipality, it will be necessary to present documents proving the permanence of the minor in Italy for the period before the registration (for instance medical certificates).
(Please note that certain foreign countries do not allow dual citizenship. It is therefore advisable to verify with one’s own consulate if recognition of Italian citizenship will imply loss of the original citizenship).

 

B)     AFTER 19 YEARS OF AGE (PREFECTURE)

If the foreign person born in Italy has turned 19 years old and has not yet applied for Italian citizenship they will then follow a different procedure from that outlined in Section A.

According to the law, the person in this situation can apply for citizenship after 3 years of legal residency, by handing the application (Form B) to the Prefecture, in addition to the original and photocopied documentation required.

 

He will furthermore need to prove that his income has not been less than 8,500 Euros per year in the past three years prior to the application (income is represented by the overall income of the family unit. Ex-students will consider their parents’ income).

B1) Documents to present:
1. receipt of payment of the required contribution of € 200 to current account 809020 of the Ministry of the Interiors
2. a valid passport
3. an intact copy of the applicant’s birth certificate
4. a residence permit. In the event of the permit showing discontinuity, the applicant will present documents which can prove his continuous stay in Italy (e.g. school or medical documents etc)
5. a “certificato storico di residenza (historical residence certificate) for the entire period the person has lived in the municipality, showing all different addresses at which the person has lived

 

Should it be considered necessary, the Ministry of Interior can request further documentation.

The applicant is notified of the request via certified mail sent to the residency address indicated on the application form (if this address changes during the procedure for the acquisition of citizenship it is essential to communicate the change to the Prefecture, specifying the new address and attaching a copy of the receipt of presentation of application or documentation relevant to the file so that the mail is not lost).

The application should be processed within 730 days. If the application has been successful, the Prefecture sends a notification to the person within 90 days from receipt of the citizenship order from the Authority. Once the applicant is in possession of the order, they will go to the relevant city hall and swear loyalty to the Republic. After this period, the order will no longer be valid and the applicant will have to apply and present all documentation again.

C)    CITIZENSHIP FOR RESIDENCY: (Art. 9, Law n. 91/92 )

The application can be presented after a period of effective residency in the Italian territory and varies depending on the citizenship of the applicant:

-       4 years for EU residents

-       5 years for stateless persons

-       10 years for non-EU nationals

 

C1) (PROCEDURE) The applicant must fill in Form B and hand it to the Prefecture of the municipality of residence. Applicants will attach the required original and photocopied documentation, comprising a:

 

-       signed application form with a € 14.62 revenue stamp

-       legalised birth certificate summary (with legalised translation)

-       legalised criminal record declaration relevant to the country of origin (and other countries in which the applicant has been resident) with legalised translation

-       INPS statements (for housemaids and carers)

-       copy of the certificate of refugee status or statelessness, in addition to the original copy to hand in for scrutiny

-       photocopy of a valid ID document

-       photocopy of Residence Permit or certification of the legal basis for residence for citizens of the European Union for EU residents

-        receipt of the payment of € 200.
Based on Legislative Decree n. 5/2012 for simplification and development, all other documentation (criminal record declaration, pending proceedings, residence certificate, civil status certificate, CUD, 730 or Modello Unico), once requested,  can now be self-certified though the relevant form.

 

The application should be processed within 730 days. If the application has been successful, the Prefecture sends a notification to the person within 90 days from receipt of the citizenship order from the Authority. Once the applicant is in possession of the order, they will go to the relevant city hall and swear loyalty to the Republic. After this period, the order will no longer be valid and the applicant will have to apply and present all documentation again.

 

To apply online, one can visit the relevant page on the Ministry of Interior website; insert one’s details along with the K10 document (sent by the Prefecture to the applicant after presentation of the application). When the procedure is concluded it will be clearly stated on the website, otherwise the application for citizenship will be considered still in progress.

 

The application for citizenship for residency has a double procedure which is not currently visible by the applicant on the Ministry of Interior website. In the first phase of the procedure, the Prefecture will check that the submitted documentation is correct and truthful and will publish a preliminary outcome of the application. The file is subsequently forwarded to the Ministry of Interior which will carry out a second assessment.

The outcomes might not correspond. The Prefecture will not be able to proceed with the application without response from the Ministry. Considering the applicant cannot verify the stage of his application (with both Prefecture and Ministry) it is possible to request information on the progress of the application from the relevant Prefecture.

 

IF THE RESPONSE IS LATE

 

In accordance with Law 241/90[1], if 2 years have passed without receiving a response, the applicant can send a letter of injunction to the public administration in order to receive a reply. This procedure will not require the applicant to hire a lawyer. This will only be the case if the applicant decides to use a Tribunal.

 

D)    CITIZENSHIP ACQUIRED THROUGH MARRIAGE
The terms of the application for Italian citizenship associated with marriage to an Italian citizen vary depending on the place of residence. If the spouses are resident in Italy, the required period is 2 years of residence after the marriage. If, on the contrary, they are resident abroad, 3 years from the date of the wedding must pass. In case there are children (whether natural or adopted) terms are half of the aforementioned.

D1) Presentation of application form
The application form is presented to the relevant Prefecture or, in the event of residence abroad, to the Diplomatic and Consular Authority.
In Italy, depending on the city in which one lives, the application form can be presented to the Prefecture after having booked an appointment electronically:

(http://www.interno.gov.it/mininterno/export/sites/default/it/sezioni/servizi/come_fare/cittadinanza/).

The application for citizenship (Form A) will be handed to the Prefecture of the place of residence. A € 16,00 revenue stamp will be applied to the Form.

(http://www.prefettura.it/pesarourbino/contenuti/37324.htm)

Should the documentation be regarded as insufficient, the Administration can request further items within an established time limit. In the event the applicant does not comply with the request, the application will be regarded inadmissible. A payment of € 200.00, in addition to the € 14.62 revenue stamp placed on the application form, is always necessary.

D2) End of procedure and administrative order
The application will take a maximum of 730 days to be processed starting from the date the application form and the relevant documents are handed in. As specified in Ministry of Interior circular n° 6415/2001, once the 2 years have passed, the applicant is automatically entitled to Italian citizenship as, in accordance to Art.8, paragraph 2 of Law 91/92 on citizenship; it is not possible to reject the application after 730 days.

The applicant can then enforce their right to Italian citizenship in front of an ordinary judge, prior to the assessment of the legal requirements, if the Ministry has not legitimately rejected the application within the time limits established by law.

Please note that since June 1st 2012 the authority to issue or deny citizenship to foreign applicants married to Italian citizens is with the Prefect, therefore all requests for information relevant to this subject will have to be addressed to the competent Prefecture and not to the Ministry of Interior.

The Head of the Department for Civil Freedom and Immigration has jurisdiction if the foreign spouse is resident abroad, and the Ministry of Interior has jurisdiction if the safety of the Republic might be at risk.

The acquisition of Italian citizenship is conditional on the oath, which will be taken within 6 months of notice of the administrative order at the municipality of residence if one lives in Italy or at the Diplomatic-Consular Authority if one is residing abroad. After 6 months, the order will cease to be valid and the person will have to submit a new application.

 

 

 

 


[1]  a law regarding administrational procedures and right of access to administrational documents,

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January 11, 2014
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