What does the Italian citizenship status mean?

In Italy, citizenship is governed by the law of 5 February 1992, n. 91 and by the implementing regulation. The Italian citizenship shows the relationship of a person with the State, and it is strictly connected with full civil and political rights.

How can I acquire the Italian citizenship as an EU citizen?

The Italian citizenship can either be acquired or requested.

You can acquire it automatically in one of the following cases:

  • by birth: also known as “jus sanguinis”, or by direct descendants of at least one parent in possession of Italian citizenship. A child is Italian if at least one of the parents is Italian;
  • by birth on Italian territory: a child born in Italy by foreign parents can only apply for citizenship after reaching the age of 18 and if he or she has resided in Italy “legally and continuously” up to that moment;
  • by adoption: a minor adopted by an Italian citizen.

Instead, citizenship can be requested:

  • by marriage: an EU citizen who marries an Italian citizen may acquire the Italian citizenship when, after the marriage, he or she has been legally resident in Italy for at least 2 years or, after 3 years from the date of the marriage if the EU citizen was resident abroad;
  • by residence: an EU citizen can acquire the Italian citizenship after 4 years of legal residence in Italy.

For all foreign nationals who fall within one of the above cases, another requirement is that of personal income or family income if they belong to the same household and the same family status, following annual limits provided by the Italian law.

What is the European citizenship?

Every citizen of an EU Member States enjoys European citizenship, in addition to the citizenship of the country of origin.

Citizenship of the European Union includes well-defined rules and rights, which can be divided into four categories:

  • freedom of movement and residence throughout the territory of the European Union;
  • the right to vote and be elected at the Municipal and European Parliament elections in the Member State of residence;
  • protection by the diplomatic and consular authorities of any Member State in a third Country where the State of citizenship of the person is not represented;
  • the right to present a petition to the European Parliament and to appeal the European mediator.