When you live long enough in Italy under a Permanent Residence, you can apply for Italian citizenship. There are other ways you can follow to receive citizenship.

Who is eligible for Italian citizenship?

You will become eligible to apply for Italian citizenship in three ways:


If you were born to Italian parents, you become eligible for Italian citizenship. It gets called Italian citizenship by:

  • Right of blood
  • Descent, or
  • Birthright
How to apply for Italian citizenship in 7 steps?

You could apply for Italian citizenship if your grandparents were Italian citizens. If they did not renounce their citizenship before you were born, you become eligible for citizenship.

You need to provide documents proving the ancestor’s identity.


In case you marry an Italian citizen, you will become eligible for Italian citizenship. Italian law permits same-sex relationships. So if you become a partner to an Italian citizen, you are also eligible for citizenship.

You need to fulfill another principle to be eligible. If you can not provide a clean record certificate, you are ineligible. In other words, if you have done an illegal or criminal activity, you aren’t qualified. Also, the Italian officials mustn’t find you a threat to national security.

There is also a length of marriage requirement. You and your partner need to live together for the required time. It is as follows:

  • Two years if you don’t have children
  • One year if you have children
  • Three years if you are applying from outside of Italy.


The process of Naturalization depends on your nationality. First, you need to enter Italy. The EU nationals don’t need a visa to enter Italy. They just need to register with the authorities.

After the EU nationals living in Italy for five years, they become eligible for Permanent Residency. When they live for four years under Permanent Residency, they will become eligible for Italian citizenship.

If you are a non-EU national, you need to live in Italy for some time. You might need to receive an Italian visa to enter the country. It is up to your nationality. The kind of visa depends on the purpose of your visit. It could be work or study. Then, you need to apply for an Italian Residence Permit. Bear in mind that all non-EU nationals HAVE TO apply for a Residence Permit to stay longer than 90 days.

You need to renew your Residence permit when it’s about to expire. You need to comply with its eligibility principles. After you live in Italy under a Residence Permit for ten years, you will become eligible for Italian citizenship.

How to apply for Italian citizenship?

The application process for Italian citizenship much depends on the country you live in. You might have to follow different procedures by your conditions. Yet, a general application process is as follows:

1. Eligibility

“You can’t get distracted by the noise of misinformation.” Do not trust gossips or baseless information. Do your research to see you are eligible for Italian citizenship or not. If you are inside Italy, visit the local immigration authorities. Providing that you are outside Italy, visit the Italian embassy or consulate. They explain everything to you.

2. Inside or outside

The application process for Italian citizenship is different if you are inside or outside of Italy. If you are inside, you need to visit the Immigration Authorities.

If you apply from your home country, you need to visit the Italian embassy or consulate. The authorities might have authorized a visa center for an application.

3. Application

Receive the application form from the embassy or authorities. You need to get the requirements package from them too.

The Italian government is strict with its citizenship. So they require a detailed and long list of requirements. The supporting documents are also different, depending on your case and the way you apply for citizenship.

4. Requirements

Complete the form and gather all the requirements. This is the state that takes a long time. You need to collect all the required supporting documents. If the officials ask for further documents, you need to provide them.

5. language test

You must provide a language proficiency certificate. The Italian government wants you to provide a B1 level. The certificate must be from a certified language center or school by the Italian government.

Remember that If you apply through birthright, you won’t need a language test.

6. Meeting with the officials

When you collected everything, set a meeting with the embassy or immigration authorities. Get to your meeting on time and bring all the requirements. You also need to pay a fee for application processing.

7. Processing

In the end, you have to wait until the authorities process your application. They evaluate everything. In this phase, they might ask for further supporting documents.

The application process for Italian citizenship is long and tedious. So you should be patient and wait. When the embassy or immigration office is done, they inform you of the further course of action.

Bear in mind that before applying for citizenship, you must have got a residence permit and have lived in Italy for a couple of years under long-stay visas such as a work visa.

What are the requirements for Italian citizenship?

The required supporting documents for Italian citizenship are a long list. You need to submit various documents depending on your case. The below items are not the complete list. You’d better visit the Italian embassy or immigration officials to know the full list.

Birth certificate

You need the birth certificate of your ancestors to prove yours and their identity.

Marriage certificate

In case of applying through marriage, provide your marriage or civil partnership certificate.

Application form

You need to get the form from the Italian embassy or local immigration office.

Proof of residency

If you apply after living the required time, you need to provide the legal Italy Residence Permit.

Language proficiency proof

Provide it from a certified language school inside or outside of Italy.

Clean record certificate

Proof that you haven’t been convicted of a crime in the country you reside. If you have lived in a foreign country for a long time, you might have to provide a certificate from there too.

Note; the mentioned list of requirements is just a general list and is not complete. As mentioned, based on the way you apply for citizenship, you need to provide further documents. Remember that you have to prove to the authorities that you are eligible for Italian citizenship.

Let’s sum up…

You can apply for Italian citizenship if you live long enough in the country. There is also a marriage and birthright citizenship rule that you can use. You just need to know and come up with the rules.

This article explained who is eligible for Italian citizenship, requirements, the application process, and more.

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  1. Randy says:

    Howdy? I’m from China. Will you please tell me how I can stay for longer than 90 days under an Italy work visa?

    • Support says:

      Hey there. Thanks for leaving a comment on our website. As you are a non-EU national, you should apply for a residence permit in Italy.