For those of you applying to have your Italian citizenship jure sanguinis recognized at an Italian consulate, there are a number of tips that can make your appointment go much more smoothly. Here are 10 tips and tricks that I always tell my clients that makes their lives easier:
1. Make your appointment early
Until the year 2009, a total of some 1 million applications for jure sanguinis citizenship had been processed. But since then, there has been a sharp upswing in the number of applicants. This means that consulates are overworked and overbooked, some of them even handing out appointments 2 years in advance!
Make sure that you make your appointment the minute you think you have an inkling of qualifying.
2. Enlist the help of a pro
Though information can be found about Italian citizenship jure sanguinis on the web and you can do much of the work yourselves, if you don't speak Italian it might be best to enlist the help of a professional who does--be they a translator or someone who can source your Italian documents and speak to your ancestor's comune on your behalf.
3. Speak to your relatives
Before having to order searches of USCIS and NARA records for your ancestor's naturalization certificate, ask your older relatives for more information! Naturalization as a U.S. citizen was a big moment in your ancestor's life, and it's likely that the original certificate still exists somewhere in a family home. This will save you much time and money.
4. Visit online fora
Do a google search for "Italian dual citizenship message board" and a treasure trove of information will pop up. You can read stories of other people who have applied, read further tips and tricks, and commiserate with your fellow applicants.
5. Don't accept "no" as an answer
Some consular workers might not be familiar with all of the rules for Italian dual citizenship. If you hear a "no," don't worry. Repeat step 4: visit the fora, explain your situation, and I can almost guarantee someone will come up with a real loophole that's worked before.
6. Don't discount church records
If you can't find your Italian ancestor's birth certificate (either because records are missing or because the birth was never actually recorded), don't fret!
Contact the local anagrafe office of the comune and have them search their registers; they will issue an official letter stating that no birth record exists as well as the reasons why they can't issue such record. For added protection come application time, get a baptismal certificate (if it's there) from the local parish (this certificate will then have to be certified by the local Diocese).
And if you can't find a baptismal record, the consulate may accept a certified copy of your ancestor's Italian military draft document (for males) issued by the State Archive of the main Italian providence. It must show his parents' names, and place and date of birth.
7. Be polite
This one seems like such a simple tip, but it's so easy to forget. We often see consular workers as cogs in a wheel, but they're actually the ones who can decide to fast track your application or make sure you're at the bottom of the barrel, so to speak.
Walk in and be cordial and friendly, and they will be sure to want to help. The old adage "you get more bees with honey than with vinegar" was never more true.
8. Make copies of everything
Make multiple copies of all the documents you have. You never know--something might get misplaced, and you certainly don't want to spend unnecessary time and money on having to get another original from the source.
9. Bring your ID and the equivalent of 300 euros
There is a non-refundable 300 euro fee per applicant. See more information (in Italian) here and here.
10. Double check, triple check... and then relax!
You've spent time, money and effort on compiling your list of documents, translations and apostilles for Italian citizenship jure sanguinis. Now you simply need to double check everything and then... relax! Show up on time and with a smile. You got this. In bocca al lupo!
What are your tips for Italian dual citizenship applicants? Comment below!
Since 2005, we've been helping people achieve their dream of obtaining their Italian passport or living, working and studying in Italy.
Subscribe to posts