Italian citizenship by residency: how many years do I need?

Nov 09, 2021

Living in Italy for a certain number of years can make you eligible for citizenship.

How many years of residency do I need?

Applications for the naturalization can be filed after ๐Ÿญ๐Ÿฌ ๐˜†๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐˜€ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐—น๐—ฒ๐—ด๐—ฎ๐—น ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ฐ๐—ฒ in Italy, which can be reduced to:

  • 3 years: for those who were born in Italy or who have parents or grandparents that were Italian citizens;
    Example. Ettoreโ€™s grandfather was an Italian citizen. Ettore has now been living in Pisa, Italy for 3 years. Ettore can apply for Italian citizenship at the relevant Town Hall where he has established his residency.
  • 4 years: for EU citizens
    Ex. Isabelle is a Belgian citizen and has been living in Florence, Italy for four and a half years. Isabelle can apply for Italian citizenship at the relevant Town Hall where she has established her residency.
  • 5 years: for stateless persons or refugees, as well as for legal-age foreigners adopted by Italian citizens;
  • No period of residence: for foreigners who have worked for the Italian State for a period of at least 5 years, even abroad.

Residency: what does it mean?

Residency is the formal registration with the Vital Statistics Office (Anagrafe) in the city where the person is domiciled. Residency must be uninterrupted, if the person leaves Italy and residency is cancelled, previous years spent in Italy do not count.

No residency…….. No citizenship!!

Residency registration is an indispensable and essential condition for obtaining residency. Applicant cannot prove in any other ways of having lived in Italy without being registered with a Comune.

Keep your permit of stay valid!

Foreigners living in Italy must keep their residence permit valid (Permesso di Soggiorno) and they should be aware that spending time outside the country may cause the revocation/cancellation of their permit:

– the permit cannot be renewed or extended if the holder has stayed out of Italy โ€” consecutively โ€” for more than 6 months; or

– in case of two year permits, if the holder has stayed out of Italy โ€” consecutively โ€” for more than half the validity of the permit (e.g. 12 consecutive months for a permit with a validity of 24 months)

– CE long term Residence Permi is revoked if the holder leaves the EU for 12 consecutive months or leaves Italy for more than 6 years

– Permit for family member of an EU citizen (Carta di soggiorno) can keep its validity when the holder leaves Italy for periods of no longer than 6 months in a year or for longer periods in case of required military service. The permit keeps its validity even if the holder leaves Italy for up to 12 months in the following cases: pregnancy, maternity, illness, study or professional reasons, or work assignment reasons.

What else do I need, other than residency?

The applicant must prove:

  • Absence of criminal records and in countries where applicant has lived
  • Proof of having produced an income in Italy and paid taxes in Italy for at least the last 3 years before submitting the application
  • Language and culture test

THE INTERVIEW: what will they ask me?

โ“ Did you choose to live in Italy

โ“ Is your family living in Italy with you and how is composed?

โ“ What did you do during your stay in Italy and what is your current job?

โ“ Which school did your children attend? If they are adults, what are they doing?

โ“ How do you earn your income? Did you always pay taxes?

โ“ Do you own a house or do you live in a rented flat?

โ“ How did you learn Italian?

โ“ Do you belong to any associations, NGOs, etc?

โ“ Do you know the political and legislative system and our Constitution?

โ“ Do you have past or pending criminal charges?

FAQs โ€” Frequently asked questions

๐Ÿญ. ๐—–๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—œ ๐—ฎ๐—ฝ๐—ฝ๐—น๐˜† ๐—ฒ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ๐—ป ๐—ถ๐—ณ ๐—บ๐˜† ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฐ๐—ผ๐—บ๐—ฒ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—ฝ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐—ฑ๐˜‚๐—ฐ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐—ฎ๐—ฏ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ? ๐—ก๐—ข

๐Ÿฎ. ๐—–๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—œ ๐—ผ๐—ฏ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐—บ๐˜† ๐—น๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด๐˜‚๐—ฎ๐—ด๐—ฒ ๐—ฐ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ๐—ฏ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ ? ๐—ฌ๐—˜๐—ฆ

๐Ÿฏ. ๐—œ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜† ๐—ฒ๐˜…๐—ฒ๐—บ๐—ฝ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฎ๐˜ƒ๐—ผ๐—ถ๐—ฑ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—น๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด๐˜‚๐—ฎ๐—ด๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜? ๐—ฌ๐—˜๐—ฆ

๐Ÿฐ. ๐——๐—ผ ๐—œ ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ ๐—ฎ๐—น๐—น ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ฐ๐˜‚๐—บ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜๐˜€ ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ๐˜† ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—น๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ๐—ฝ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป? ๐—ฌ๐—˜๐—ฆ

๐Ÿฑ. ๐—–๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐—œ ๐—ฐ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ด๐—ฒ ๐—บ๐˜† ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐—ถ๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ฐ๐˜† ๐˜„๐—ต๐—ถ๐—น๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ๐—ฝ๐—ฝ๐—น๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด? ๐—ฌ๐—˜๐—ฆ

๐Ÿฒ. ๐—ช๐—ถ๐—น๐—น ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฃ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ๐—ณ๐—ฒ๐˜๐˜๐˜‚๐—ฟ๐—ฎ ๐—ถ๐—ป๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜ƒ๐—ถ๐—ฒ๐˜„ ๐—บ๐—ฒ? ๐—ฌ๐—˜๐—ฆ

๐Ÿณ. ๐—ฆ๐—ต๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—น๐—ฑ ๐—œ ๐—ฎ๐—น๐˜€๐—ผ ๐˜€๐˜‚๐—ฏ๐—บ๐—ถ๐˜ ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—ถ๐—ด๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ฎ๐—น ๐—ฐ๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ณ๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ฒ๐˜€? ๐—ฌ๐—˜๐—ฆ

๐Ÿด. ๐—›๐—ผ๐˜„ ๐—น๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ๐—ฑ๐—ท๐˜‚๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป ๐—ฝ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐—ฐ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜€ ๐—ฐ๐—ฎ๐—ป ๐˜๐—ฎ๐—ธ๐—ฒ? 3 ๐˜†๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐˜€

๐Ÿต. ๐—œ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐—ฒ ๐—ฎ ๐˜„๐—ฎ๐˜† ๐˜๐—ผ ๐—ฒ๐˜…๐—ฝ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ฒ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ฝ๐—ฟ๐—ผ๐—ฐ๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜€? ๐—ก๐—ข

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