RE-ACQUISITION of Italian Citizenship Through Your Parents

What if your parents were born in Italy, migrated to the U.S., and lost their Italian Citizenship before your birth? You would think you did not qualify for Italian Dual Citizenship because they had already renounced their Italian citizenship (by becoming U.S. Citizens) by the time of your birth, and you were born before August 16, 1992. While this is correct, there is a positive loophole. 

Pursuant to art. 14, the Italian Citizenship Law No. 91/1992 reads “Minor children of people who acquire or re-acquire Italian Citizenship, if cohabiting with them, acquire Italian Citizenship as well; once they become adults (i.e., 18 years and older), they can renounce it, if in possession of another citizenship."

So, if your parents learned about this opportunity and applied to re-acquire their Italian Citizenship while you were still a minor, you may be in luck. But only if the following conditions are met:

  • You were 17 or younger at the time of their re-acquisition,
  • You were cohabiting with your parent(s) who re-gained the Italian Citizenship,
  • You were already in possession of the citizenship of another country (U.S. citizenship by birth), and when you became an adult, you did not officially renounce your Italian Citizenship.

What’s next? Determine where your parent or parents went through the process of regaining their Italian Citizenship; was it at the Italian Consulate that had jurisdiction over the state where they resided here in the U.S. or was it in Italy? If it was here in the U.S., contact this Italian Consulate to see if your parents registered your birth at the time. If they did you are an Italian Dual Citizen, and you can apply for a passport.  If not, you will have to make an appointment to formally apply for citizenship. 

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