Italy shortens time to naturalisation decisions

On 18 December 2020, the Italian Senate approved the conversion Law No. 173, amending the Decree No. 130 of 21 October 2020. The Decree No. 130 “contains urgent provisions on immigration, international and complementary protection, amendments to articles 131-bis, 391-bis, 391-ter and 588 of the criminal code, as well as measures regarding the prohibition of access to businesses public spaces and places of public detention, to combat the distorted use of the web and to regulate the Ombudsperson office.”

Provisions related to citizenship shorten the administrative procedure for decisions on naturalisation (for residence- and marriage-based citizenship acquisition). Amendments to article 9-ter of Law No. 91 of 5 February 1992 by means of article 4(5) of Law No. 173 stipulate that Italian authorities are bound to decide on naturalisation applications in 24 months, and that this deadline could be extended up to a maximum to 36 months from the date of application. This timeframe will be applied to naturalisation requests submitted after 20 December 2020, in line with article 4(6) of Law No. 173.

Applications submitted before 20 December will be processed in line with Decree No. 113 of 4 October 2018, which had increased the original processing time of naturalisation applications of 730 days (2 years) to 4 years, following the approval of legislation proposed by the then Minister of Interior, Matteo Salvini. Unlike the current provisions, those of Decree No. 113 applied retroactively, to all applications under consideration on 4 October 2018, and continues to apply to those submitted between that date and 20 December 2020.

For further information on citizenship legislation in Italy, check out our country profile pages.

The featured picture for this news item is the interior of Palazzo Madama, the Senate of the Italian Republic, shared under licence CC BY-SA 4.0