Finding a soulmate in another part of the world is an exciting proposition. But living happily ever after requires you to marry them and move to their country. If you marry an Italian, you are in luck because the country has a simple process for acquiring citizenship by marriage. But everything boils down to understanding the rules, timelines, and steps of the process. You can get expert assistance from a specialist to get a better overview and guidance to complete the process smoothly. Check http://www.mbersanilaw.com/ to understand how citizenship by marriage works. We have a concise description of the norms you will have to follow to claim your rights and start a new life with your Italian spouse and their family.
Before applying for Italian citizenship by marriage, you need to understand that you need more than marriage to be eligible. If you marry an Italian citizen, you can apply two years after their union (if the Italian spouse resides in Italy). The period extends to three years if the spouse resides outside Italy. The rule applies to couples in same-sex civil unions as well. Apart from the given period, you can expedite the process if you have biological or legally adopted children with your partner.
The waiting period is cut down to half, which means you can apply after one year if you live in Italy and 18 months if residing elsewhere. The Italian spouse residing abroad must be registered with the AIRE before starting the citizenship process. They must also register the foreign marriage record through the local Italian consulate. At the same time, their comune must have registered the marriage in Italy.
Like any other citizenship route, this one also requires the applicant to submit documents for validating their claim. It makes sense to have your paperwork in place before initiating the process. Here are the ones you must have at hand.
- A copy of your marriage certificate from the Italian municipality of the Italian spouse
- A certified copy of the birth certificate of the applicant
- A record of criminal background checks
- ID card of the Italian spouse
- A signed declaration by both partners stating they are still married
- Italian language certification showing B1 (intermediate level) proficiency
- Proof of bank transfer of 250.00 Euros as the processing fee paid to Ministero dell’Interno
Application filing and process
Once you have the documents ready, you can go ahead to file the application. Applicants residing abroad have to file at the local Italian consulate. Those living in Italy must file it with the local Prefettura. The process involves the following steps:
Step #1: Document gathering
Start by printing the application form, filling it out, signing it, and getting the signatures of the relevant authorities. You will need originals and certified translated copies of your passport and driver’s license, along with your marriage certificate in the original form. You will also have to provide a recent utility bill as proof of Italian residency of the foreign spouse if applicable.
Step #2: Translation and legalization
Any documents issued outside Italy will be in a different language, making them invalid for the process. To ensure they are valid, you have to get them translated into Italian and certified by an official at the local consulate. Further, you will also need an Apostille stamp on the US-origin documents for their legalization.
Step #3: Application submission
Submit the application on the online portal to proceed with it. You will also have to attach all documents in one PDF along with the application. The local consulate or Prefettura will review the application and documents at this stage.
Step #4: In-person appointment
The consulate or Prefettura may ask for more documents and call you to visit personally to finalize the process. You will have to appear for an interview and hand over your documents to the officials. They may accept the application, deny it outright, or give conditional acceptance. The initial appointment may come after a month or more, depending on the application in waiting at your consulate.
The processing time for citizenship by marriage is typically two years, though you may even have to wait longer in some cases. But the wait is worthwhile because you get the opportunity to start a new life in your partner’s country. You can expedite the process by doing everything right and having all the documents in place while applying. Getting assistance from a citizenship expert is also a good idea because they can guide you with both.