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Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Over 25 million Italians have emigrated between 1861 and 1960 with a migration boom between 1871 and 1915 when over 13,5 million emigrants left the country for European and overseas destinations.
16 posts • Page 1 of 21, 2

Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby jhscanio » 02 Apr 2012, 04:04

Hi all,

I am really hoping someone can help us with an issue that seems to have arisen with my husbands application for Italian citizenship.

After 2.5 years of document collecting across 3 different continents, appointments and request for additional documentation my husband finally submitted the last of the required documents for his Italian citizenship via Jur Sanguinis. Just when we thought all was well my husband gets a voice mail from the consulate saying he doesn't qualify. Would someone please help us.

Here are the details:
Grandparents Immigrated from Italy to Argentina - never naturalized or renounced their citizenship- died Italian citizens.

Father - born in Argentina, became USA citizen via naturalization 1991.

Son/Applicant: Chilean citizen born 1978, became USA citizen via naturalization 2004.

The consulate is saying that because the Father became naturalized in the USA in 1991 his son, a minor at the time, no longer qualifies for Italian citizenship even though he was born before his father was USA naturalized and didn't become USA naturalized himself until 2004, when dual citizenship was allowed.

But, here's the thing... The Son and Father did not reside together. The Father resided in California and was naturalized in California, while the Son was residing in Florida with his Mother. His Father's naturalization certificate is the only proof of residency they have for him living in Cali and we are hoping that he would be able to get a copy of his middle school transcript proving he was resident of Florida. Does this provide hope for him under the following?

"Loss of Italian citizenship under law no. 555 of 1912
Italian citizenship could be lost:

By the minor and unemancipated child - without the immunities from loss to be found in articles 7 and 12 (child with jus soli citizenship or child of remarried widow with consequent new citizenship) - who, residing outside of Italy, held a non-Italian citizenship and lived with a father (or mother if the father was dead) whose Italian citizenship was also lost. (article 12)"

Your advise and assistance in this matter is greatly appreciated.
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby JJ313 » 02 Apr 2012, 15:32

Unfortunately the consulate appears to have applied the law correctly in this instance. Since your husband had another citizenship (Chilean) other than US he lost his Italian citizenship when his father naturalized. Your husband was not emancipated as he was still a minor living with a parent. The way you describe the facts, your husband was listed on the naturalization as living in California even though he actually was residing in FL. We're his parents divorced? What was the relationship?
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby jhscanio » 02 Apr 2012, 16:21

Only the father was residing in California and the naturalization cert for him was in Cali. My husbands mother and his father were not married or living together at the time. Hi father and mother eventually got married in 1993 an then divorced later that year.
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby JJ313 » 02 Apr 2012, 18:49

Look at Law No. 123 from 1983 and Circulare 9 from 7/4/2001, in this case your husband meets 1 and 2b unless his mother is also Italian. He possesed citizenship other than what is granted automatically by being born In a foreign country and He attained majority after 4/27/1983 and his only Italian parent lost citizenship and did not reacquire it before he attained majority.
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby jhscanio » 02 Apr 2012, 19:56

Thanks for your responses. My husband managed to speak with the consulate and they said under the 1983 he does not qualify :(

However, she did say that my husband can re-acquire his citizenship by moving there. Naturally we have questions on this process, but will post separately after we do some research. Thanks again! 
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby mler » 03 Apr 2012, 21:32

Actually, moving there is not actually necessary. He will need to inform the consulate of his intention to reacquire his lost citizenship and then establish residency within a year of making this declaration. Once he is in Italy, he informs the comune that he has established residency, and once his residency is confirmed, he will be able to apply for a passport. He will not need to live in Italy for an extended period..

The NY and LA consulates have specific information about this process posted on their websites.
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby jhscanio » 04 Apr 2012, 03:30

mler wrote:Actually, moving there is not actually necessary. He will need to inform the consulate of his intention to reacquire his lost citizenship and then establish residency within a year of making this declaration. Once he is in Italy, he informs the comune that he has established residency, and once his residency is confirmed, he will be able to apply for a passport. He will not need to live in Italy for an extended period..

The NY and LA consulates have specific information about this process posted on their websites.


Thanks for the assistance!

We seem to be getting confused with the "Establishing Residency" part. How would he be able to move there to establish residency if he doesn't have citizenship. Would he fly in as a visitor? How would he rent an apartment and take out utilities as a tourist?

Would he also need to go to the comune where his granparents were born? It's a smaller one, in Roccapalumba, Sicily.

What would they need as proof of residency, a utility bill or something to that affect?

We planned on traveling to Italy for a few weeks next year, so if can time it right we are hoping to get this sorted at the same time.
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby jhscanio » 04 Apr 2012, 03:36

Another question is would myself, as his Wife and our Son obtain citizenship at the same time? We plan on moving to Italy in the not too distant future and I would need to get a job and our son would need to be registered in school and we would need to buy a house.

Thanks!
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby jennabet » 05 Apr 2012, 11:04

The way I understand this situation is that the applicant born in Chile never had Italian citizenship therefore he cannot reclaim something he never had. He would be allowed to move to Italy (after obtaining a visa) and live there for three years in order to become naturalized on the short path to naturalization because he has a first degree ancestor who was born in Italy. You can start with your consulate on how to obtain a visa to live in Italy keeping in mind that your husband will not be allowed to work in Italy during this three year period.
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby jennabet » 05 Apr 2012, 11:08

To elaborate a little more. I think you mis-understood what the consulate said. Your husband will not be reacquiring his Italian citizenship because he never had it to lose in the first place. What the consulate meant is that your husband can live in Italy for three years and then become naturalized.
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby jennabet » 05 Apr 2012, 11:31

Also, there seems to be some confusion out there about just what an emancipated minor is and I would think the consulates may be becoming overburdened with applicants trying to argue these kind of cases.

A minor child NOT residing with a father who has become naturalized does NOT mean the minor child is emancipated. In nearly all cases involving parents who naturalized while leaving minor children in Italy, the naturalized parent provided support for the minor child. "Support" is the key word and not the fact that the minor child did not live with his father.

The best way to show that a child is emancipated and no longer being supported by a naturalized father is to prove that the minor child himself is already married and supporting a family of his own.

If you can't show this, then your husband was not born to an Italian citizen and was never Italian himself.
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby mler » 05 Apr 2012, 14:26

Actually he was an Italian citizen. He was born in Chile to a father born in Argentina to an Italian citizen who never naturalized. Since his father was Italian, he was also Italian when he was born. He lost that citizenship when his father naturalized in 1991 and he was still a minor.

You do not have to establish residency in the ancestral comune, but you must reside at a legitimate address (not a hotel). If your husband has family in Italy, you can temporarily move in with them. After you inform the comune of your husband's intent, they will send someone to that address to confirm that he is indeed residing in that location. This generally takes no more than one to two months. Once this is done, your husband can apply for a passport.

If you have minor children, their citizenship will be recognized with their father's. Adult children will have to reside in Italy for three years in the manner described by jennabet. You will have to apply separately for citizenship through marriage (expect this to take a minimum of two to three years) but you will be able to legally reside in Italy with your Italian husband.
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby mler » 05 Apr 2012, 14:35

One additional note: you can actually do this on a short trip to Italy. Since the process requires less than three months, no visa is necessary (this is specifically stated on the NY and LA websites). This topic was discussed extensively at www.italiancitizenshp.freeforums.org several weeks ago because apparently the Philadelphia consulate required the applicant to obtain a visa (contrary to a specific Italian directive I might add),

Likely you will not need a visa.
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby jennabet » 05 Apr 2012, 17:26

A minor child who lost Italian citizenship due the action of a parent cannot re-acquire it. Only the parent could have re-acquired it for himself within a certain window of opportunity but any minor children that lost citizenship due to his actions would not be affected. In this case, the applicant can live in Italy for three years (after acquiring a visa from his consulate) in order to naturalize via the short path keeping in mind that he will not be allowed to work in Italy during this time. In order to qualify for the visa a reliable income from a source outside of Italy in the amount of at least $3,500 a month per person would be required.
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Re: Please help with USA Naturalization Question

Postby mler » 05 Apr 2012, 21:27

Ii won't argue the point with you, jennabet, because I believe this is an area open to interpretation. It may be a good idea for mhscanio to contact the consulate again for clarification.

If you do so, mhscanio, please post again and let us know what's they tell you. There is a considerable difference between a one month and a three year residency; and as jennabet has noted, the three year naturalization process does not permit you to work in Italy, which can make matters very difficult.
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