Among the many benefits that come with having Italian Dual Citizenship is the fact that it can be passed on to future generations. In fact, it is your responsibility after you have been granted Italian citizenship by right of blood (jure sanguinis), to report to the Italian Consulate that has jurisdiction over the state where you reside (if you are abroad) or to the Italian Municipality (if you take permanent residency in Italy) any changes in your civil status. This means registering marriages, divorces, children’s births, including deaths of your Italian ascendants. When your children become adults, they will have to do the same to ensure that their citizenship rights are going to be inherited by their children and so on.
How do you register your additional vital records with the Italian Consulate if you reside abroad?
You might have noticed that some Italian Consulates do not require you to present any documents that pertain to your generation other than your birth record (so no marriages/divorces) on the day of your appointment when applying for Italian Citizenship (whether in person or by mail). In fact, they specifically tell you that any of these additional events will be processed after you have been recognized an Italian citizen.
NOTE: The situation is different if you have “minor” children (who are still minors the day of your appointment); in that case all your generation documents (including marriages and divorces) will have to be presented the day of your appointment.
However, there is an exception to this rule and that is the Miami Italian Consulate: over the past year or so, according to their instructions’ email, applicants must submit only their birth certificate, even if they have minor children; the applicant will be able to register marriage(s) and minor children’s births only after they have been recognized Italian citizens.
In the event you get married and have children after you have become an Italian citizen, these additional records will have to be recorded with the Italian Consulate where you are registered with A.I.R.E. (Registry of Italian Citizens Residing Abroad).
Here is the procedure:
• You do now have to go in person. You can mail the vital records, issued in the long form, certified, legalized with an Apostille and translated to Italian (the Apostille does not need to be translated to Italian), to the Vital Records Office of the Consulate. Although a preferred shipping method is usually not specified, always use a mail service with tracking.
NOTE: The San Francisco Italian Consulate allows you to physically deliver/drop off the documents however since not everyone lives close to the Consulate mailing the documents with tracking might be the best option.
There is one very important exception, and that is the Houston Italian Consulate, as they recently started requiring an appointment through their Online Booking System (Prenot@Mi) to register any additional vital records with their office. Here is the link to the Houston Consulate webpage for more details: https://conshouston.esteri.it/it/servizi-consolari-e-visti/servizi-per-il-cittadino-italiano/stato-civile/
• In the mailing you will also include a copy of your valid Photo ID and the “registration” forms that you will find on the Italian Consulate website under Consular Services and then “Vital Records”. You will select the relevant Consular Form that is required to record either a birth, a marriage, a civil union, a death, or a divorce.
• The Italian Consulate will request the registration of these additional documents to the Italian Municipality (Comune) where you are registered with the AIRE by legal email (PEC).
• The registration is FREE of charge.
• Timeline: it is unclear how long it takes for the Italian Municipality to record these additional events. It is really based on the workload and processing times of each Comune. Consulates generally refer you to the Comune to check the status; you can write the Anagrafe/Ufficio di Stato Civile Office preferably in Italian.
Let’s go into more detail about how to register each vital event:
Birth Record of a minor child – Register the birth of a minor child or children before they turn 18 years old is strongly recommended so that they can be recognized Italian citizens automatically.
You cannot request the registration of your minor child’s birth unless also your marriage (or marriages in case you have been married multiple times and if that is the case also your divorce records) has already been recorded or is recorded at the same time. You will need to request a certified copy of your child’s birth record issued in the “long form”, affix the Apostille and translate only the vital record in Italian. If you child has been adopted, also the adoption records will need to be recorded with Apostille and translation to Italian. Always make sure that all the names that appear on the child’s birth record are consistent with your original birth record.
NOTE: you can only register the birth of a minor child; if your child has already turned 18, he or she will have to apply for Italian citizenship by descent by making an appointment with the Italian Consulate that has jurisdiction over the State here in the US where he or she resides and apply there (either in person or by mail) by presenting all the required documents. If the child resides under your same Consular jurisdiction, he or she can tap into your document portfolio and only present his or her birth (plus any additional marriages and divorces that you have had, after you gained your recognition of Citizenship), with the Consular Application Forms and an Application Fee payable directly to the Consulate. If the child resides under a different Consular jurisdiction, it is like starting from scratch because all the required documents that link your child to the Italian born ancestor who came to the US will have to be procured. This process is much longer.
Marriage Record – Italian Consulates require not just the certificate but also the marriage license (or application depending on the State where the marriage took place). Both documents (unless the county where your license was originally purchased issues only one document combining both the marriage and the license) will have to be certified, apostilled, and translated to Italian. Also in this case, the information listed on both documents must match the information listed on your original birth record (full name, including middle names, parents’ names, date of birth, and place of birth).
Divorce Records – Also in this case, Italian Consulates always require two documents, the Divorce Decree and the Certificate of No Appeal. Consulates want to make sure that the divorce is final and there is no appeal pending. Both documents must be certified by the county clerk, legalized with an apostille and translated to Italian. Often the translation of divorce records can be expensive if the document is multiple pages long (especially if the separation agreement is stapled to the decree). NOTE: You must translate the entire document. There will be two (2) Consular forms to be included when requesting registration: the Request of Transcription AND the Affidavit. Both forms are available in the Consular section (Consular Services and Vital Records).
Death Record – A certified copy of the death record of the ascendant who passed away since you were granted Italian citizenship, issued in the long form (cause of death must be listed), with Apostille and translation to Italian will have to be recorded with the relevant Consular form.
IMPORTANT: If you have moved to a different State and changed Consular Jurisdiction after you were granted Italian citizenship by descent you will have to update your AIRE profile so that you will be able to renew your passport when needed and register additional vital events when they occur at your new Consulate. More here: https://serviziconsolari.esteri.it/ScoFE/index.sco
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