Recently some Italian Consulates abroad are applying a very restrictive interpretation of the Italian Civil Code of 1865, Article 11, paragraph 2, concerning the loss of Italian citizenship. This Law was effective until July 1st, 1912 when came into force the Italian Citizenship Law n.555/1912.
Article 11, paragraph 2 of the Civil Code of 1865 said that: who has received the citizenship of a foreign country loses his Italian citizenship.
According to this restrictive interpretation, Italian citizenship jure sanguinis by filiation wasn’t transmitted to the children of Italian citizens born abroad before June 30th, 1912 in Countries in which the criteria of jus soli is applied in matters of citizenship (citizenship acquired automatically through birth within the national territory).
The consequence is that the applicant would no longer be eligible to claim Italian jure sanguinis citizenship if he has an ascendant born before June 30th, 1912 in a jus soli Country.
Until today instead, this paragraph of the Law was interpreted as referring to an emancipated or adult person, able to request the granting of foreign citizenship by free and voluntary choice.
The reasons were that a minor of age could not lose the Italian Citizenship transmitted by his parents due to a Law of a foreign country that automatically attributes jure soli citizenship only because he was born in that country.
Anyway, no new Italian Law or circular has been issued on the matter, nor the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has ever sent formal instructions to the Consular Offices abroad about this new interpretation of the Article 11, paragraph 2 of Civil Code of 1865.
In order to clarify this interpretative doubt, however, a formal request was submitted to the Italian Authorities, therefore it remains only to wait for an official response.
ItalianPapers will check for further updates, stay tuned!
Update on September 29th, 2019 – The Italian Authorities do not longer apply a restrictive interpretation of the Italian Civil Code of 1865, Article 11, paragraph 2, concerning the loss of Italian citizenship: the 1865/1912 issue is currently over. Read the last update of this in-depth paper.
Avv. Paola Caputi
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