FAQ – Italian Citizenship by Descent: the 1948 rule

Jan 31, 2022

In this article, you will find the answers to the most common questions that we receive for cases regarding the request of Italian Citizenship by Descent (Jure sanguinis) that applies the 1948 rule.


1) Do I need to travel to Italy and attend any stage of the judicial process?

No, there is no need for you to come to Italy to start the process in the Court or to stay in Italy until the judgment will be released as your lawyers will participate in the process on your behalf. (yet, a power of attorney will be necessary for this)

2) Can I live in Italy while my case is pending in Court?

Theoretically, there is nothing to stop you from coming to Italy while your case is pending in the Italian Court, yet please note that there is no specific permit of stay for claimants of Italian citizenship before the Court of Rome. This means, that in order to come and stay in Italy, you will need to request a specific visa and permit of stay that applies to your planned activities in Italy (e.g. study, work, etc.)

3)  Is there a maximum number of petitioners for a case with the same Italian ancestor in the proceeding of the Court? 

No, as far as the petitioners share the same Italian lineage, there is no limit on the number of applicants. So, if you have other family members or even relatives that are interested in requesting Italian citizenship, it is probably a good idea to invite them to submit the request all together.

4) Can I follow my own legal proceedings? Or do I need a lawyer?

Yes, you will have a registry number assigned by the Court that you will use to follow the procedure of your case, easily through an APP in total transparency.  

5) Do I need to legalize, apostille, notarize my documents?

Yes. All documents issued outside Italy must be notarized, legalized, and/or apostilled. The process of legalization may depend on the document and where it has been issued. Otherwise, such documents won’t be legally recognized in Italy.

6) Do I need to translate the documents into Italian when requesting Italian citizenship? 

Yes. It is a general rule that all foreign documents must be translated into Italian. If the translation is done in Italy it must be sworn at the Court by the translator. If the translation is done abroad, it must be legalized by the Italian Consulate. 

7) Can I start the case without all the paperwork?

No, it is not possible to submit your request to the Court if you do not have all the required documentation and information ready.

9) How long does the Court’s case last? 

Practically, it will depend on the Judge’s workload. Generally, it takes about 2 years from the request of the Italian Citizenship under the 1948 rule, but sometimes it can be shorter. 

10) What are the chances of success for the cause? 

If all supporting documents are in good order, the chances to win the case are high. In most cases, the Italian Ministry of Interior does not raise any objection and the case is decided favourably by the Judge. 


In order to determine whether or not you would qualify to request Italian citizenship, please feel free to contact us by filling out the online form, or send us an email to citizenship@mazzeschi.it.

Our Multilingual Service Desks with native English, Italian, Japanese, Chinese, Spanish and Portuguese speaking associates serving as a contact point for both foreign companies and individuals can assist you. Contact us for an initial consultation and price quote by completing the online form. Our immigration consultants will reach out to you shortly via email.

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