Upsetting Italian Citizenship Qualification Paradox

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.
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Joined: 26 Jan 2007, 00:00
Location: New Rochelle, NY

Upsetting Italian Citizenship Qualification Paradox

Post by hellosquire » 26 Dec 2007, 09:00


Some of you have heard my story before, but I'm still looking for a definitive answer to get some closure.

I applied for citizenship at the NY consulate in July. I went through my great grandfather (my father's mother's father). My grandfather (my father's father) was born in Italy, but naturalized as an American in 1952. My dad was born in 1954, so I lost my path to citizenship via that route. Qualifying through my great grandfather made sense to me. His daughter, my grandmother, was born in America in 1911. Her son, my dad, was born in 1954. My great grandfather was born in 1880 in Italy, and did not naturalize as an American until 1921.

When I went to the consulate, I was told there was a possibility that my grandmother renounced her Italian citizenship when my grandfather naturalized in 1952, under the premise that "females take the nationality of their husbands." Well, my argument is that she didn't naturalize with him - she was already an American citizen, and that she inherited her Italian citizenship through her father, not through her husband. I thought she could only lose her Italian citizenship by naturalizing, which she never did - never could have as a native born US citizen.

I'm so worried that they skipped over my application. I've heard from another poster who went to the NY consulate in August, and got his citizenship a few weeks ago. Which also leads me to wonder if the consulate makes the decision, or if they wait for some sort of confirmation from Italy to send me my recognition letter. If that's not true, then surely I should've got my confirmation if I applied in July. I don't want to call them for fear of pestering them. I don't mind waiting at all, I just hope they didn't shelve my application without calling me to say I don't qualify or to ask for something I may need to provide. I had everything, translations for everything too. Nothing was missing from either side of the family.

My case seems to be a paradox with no definitive answer. During the meeting in July, the consular official said she'd "look over it in the afternoon" and call me. Of course, I never received a call. They couldn't give me a straight answer. Is there anyone fluent in Italian who could comb over the citizenship laws to see if my issue is explained? Even better, is there anyone here who received their citizenship under similar circumstances?

Like I said, I don't mind waiting for my recognition, but the qualification issue is driving me nuts after all the hard work and money I put into this project.

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