Italian citizenship by marriage: how to prevent rejection

Before the entered into force of Salvini Italian Decree n.113 of 2018, if the submission of online application for citizenship by marriage presented solvable issues, it was accepted “with reserve” but it was however accepted. Today, instead, even the simple scan performed incorrectly or partially leads to the inadmissibility or rejection of the submission of application online.
The same Decree has lengthened the timing for the recognition of citizenship by marriage from 2 to 4 years, but note that the countdown starts only when the documentation produced to Italian Authority is complete and correct; this means that the date when the timeline starts may not coincide with the moment of online submission: extending even further the time to obtain recognition of citizenship.

Then, to be sure not to make mistakes concerning your application that can hinder or lengthen the timeline, pay attention to the requirements and documents you need.

The foreign spouse of an Italian citizen may apply for Italian citizenship after 2 years of marriage if the couple resides in Italy or after 3 years of marriage if it resides abroad. These time frames are reduced by half if there are children born or adopted by the married couple. The applicant must have no criminal record and adequate knowledge of the Italian language at a B1 (QCER) level.

In addition to the above requirements, the applicant must attach the mandatory documentation to the online submission of the application.

Some documents are required both if the spouses reside in Italy and if the spouses live abroad:

  • Estratto del certificato di matrimonio of spouses, already registered at the Comune in Italy
  • Valid Passport
  • Criminal record (s) background check certificates with Apostille/Consular legalization and sworn/certified translation
  • Certified full copy birth certificate of the applicant with Apostille/Consular legalization and sworn/certified translation
  • Certificate of the Italian language at the B1 level
  • ID card of the Italian spouse
  • Valid passport of children (if applicable)
  • Proof of bank transfer of € 250.00 to Ministero dell’Interno

In addition, only for spouses residing abroad, a pre-requisite is required

  • The Italian spouse must be registered at the Consulate as an Italian Citizen Residing Abroad – A.I.R.E

In addition, only for spouses residing in Italy the following documents are also required:

  • Revenue stamp of € 16.00
  • Permit to stay in Italy of the applicant
  • Historical certificate(s) of residence
  • Certificate of Family status

However, the Italian Authorities may also ask for additional documentation at its discretion.

So, to prevent rejection from Italian Authority, the applicant has to investigate about document list for specific Italian Consulates/Prefecture, has to prepare and upload all the documentation in the right way, has to check that the certificates have not expired (according to Italian law) and they are in compliance with the Apostille / Consular Legalizations, also, the applicant has to be sure that the language certification has been released from recognized certification Bodies. Not less important, the applicant has to fill in the online format correctly, upload documents by topic, and not in too heavy files.

If the process seems stressful to you: don’t worry. Whether you are still collecting the documentation, or that you have already prepared it, ItalianPapers can assist you step by step in preparing documents, obtaining the Italian certificates, carrying out the sworn translation into Italian of the foreign certificates, or just by checking the documentation already ready or submitting the application online on your behalf.

Avv. Paola Caputi