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Are you interested in obtaining dual citizenship with another country? We are currently in this process with Italy. We knew we wanted to start this journey when we first visited Italy back in 2010. Yes indeed, we returned from this vacation and we both knew this is where we would one day want to retire or at least spend a few years.
You need to understand that this is not an easy process. We applied at the Consulate on November 2, 2015, and we are still waiting for confirmation that all our paperwork has been processed and we are ready for passports. What do they say about hindsight? It’s true. If we knew then what we know now, our lives would be different and not so stressed. We sold our home which we really shouldn’t have done. We sold our furniture, cars, possessions, just about everything. You can read other posts on the blog about this. We have been traveling and staying with family since January 2016 – ready to leave the USA and begin our 1-year adventure in Italy.
We have put together a basic checklist to help you get started if you are considering obtaining dual citizenship with Italy. Our checklist is for Americans trying to go through this process. Even today, it still amazes me the amount of documentation we needed and, the fact that it had to be all original documents.
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All the documents we needed were in New York and Massachusetts. It literally took us about two+ years to get these original documents (with all the signatures, seals, and certificates), as well as, several documents we needed from Sicily.
Please understand, by no means is this checklist a complete list of everything you will need to do. It is meant to be a starting point, a foundation to build upon; as each state has different requirements. These requirements will depend on where you, your spouse, parents, and grandparents were born, married, divorced (if applicable), or died, (if that be the case). Italian law is constantly changing and what is true today might very well be different tomorrow. That is exactly why it is best to go to a reliable source rather than go by what others have experienced.
There is also good information on the internet. If you have specific questions, you can ask them on a site www.expatexchange.com. I have found this site quite helpful for a variety of topics.
There is a Facebook group with all sorts of information, help, and guidance. It is strictly about US/Italian dual citizenship: https://www.facebook.com/groups/23386646249/
You should make an appointment and meet with your local Italian Consulate. There is no cost associated with this meeting. Be respectful of their time and have all your questions written down with you so you don’t forget to ask something and regret it later. Our local Consulate’s office was located on the second floor of the Italian American Club!
If you decide to start your journey, please share it with us! We’d love to hear from you.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published on December 1, 2016, and has been updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.