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Other Talk "Otterville" plus Religion/Politics

View Poll Results: Should I apply?
Yes. Go for it. 19 67.86%
Eh. Whatever floats your boat. 8 28.57%
No. Don't waste your time. 1 3.57%
Apply for Twikoffship instead. 0 0%
Voters: 28. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 06-09-08, 09:54 PM   #1
matta
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Dual Citizenship?

So, I'm a US citizen, and very happy as a US citizen. I like to travel internationally (particularly to Europe), but I have no illusions of ever living / working outside of the US (barring a Barack Obama election - kidding). However, it has recently come to my attention that I am eligible for Italian dual citizenship via jure sanguinis.

So, should I do it?

Positivies:
- I could travel around the EU easier
- If I decided to work/study in the EU for any period of time, I wouldn't have to deal with paperwork
- It would extend citizenship to my kids, who would otherwise not be able to get citizenship (they would be too far removed)
- It would give me a good Excape Plan
- I would get to practice my Italian at the consulate

Negatives:
- It would cost a few hundred bucks for apostilles, translations, and a passport
- I wouldn't be able to join the FBI and might have a hard time running for political office
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Old 06-09-08, 10:29 PM   #2
Dave99
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I'd probably do it for novelty sake, and potentially easier (slightly anyway) travel in the EU. Those negatives wouldn't mean much to me.
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Old 06-09-08, 10:40 PM   #3
kitkat
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I'd totally do it. I'd love to have the option to live and travel abroad for an extended period if I chose, and even if you never take advantage of that luxury it would be great to be able to extend that opportunity to your kids, if they chose. I'm a bit envious of people whose families have only been here for a few generations, just for that reason.
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Old 06-09-08, 11:38 PM   #4
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I have a friend that has USA/French citizenship, she said the paper work was a bitch to do.
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Old 06-09-08, 11:43 PM   #5
matta
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Yeah, traveling in the EU isn't that big of a deal with a US passport, but it would be nice to dodge the long lines at Passport Control.

Probably the biggest reason to do it is to pass the citizenship on to children and grand children, who would otherwise not be able to prove citizenship (though they'd technically still be citizens, unless the law changes or someone in the lineage denounces Italian citizenship).
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Old 06-09-08, 11:55 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by movie diva
I have a friend that has USA/French citizenship, she said the paper work was a bitch to do.
List of all the documents you'd need to claim 3rd generation citizenship through your mother's maternal grandfather (your great grandfather):

-Your maternal great grandfather's birth certificate from Italy.
-Your maternal great grandmother's birth certificate.
-Your great grandparents' marriage certificate. (If married outside of Italy, you will need an apostille and a translation into Italian.)
-Your maternal great grandfather's certificate of naturalization OR statement of "No Records"
-Your maternal grandmother's birth certificate (with apostille and translation)
-Your maternal grandfather's birth certificate
-Your grandparents' marriage certificate (with apostille and translation)
-Your mother's birth certificate (with apostille and translation)
-Your father's birth certificate
-Your parents' marriage certificate (with apostille and translation)
-Your birth certificate (with apostille and translation)
-Your marriage certificate, if applicable (with apostille and translation)
-Your spouse's birth certificate, if applicable
-Birth certificates for all your children under the age of eighteen, if applicable (with apostille and translation)
-Any applicable divorce decrees/certificates (with apostille and translation)
-Death certificates for anyone listed above (with apostille and translation, if for your mother, grandmother or great grandfather)

Most documents from the US need to be translated by an approved translator and need an apostille from the Secretary of State. All Italian documents must be requested from the town in which the person was born. Further, you need a death certificate for your claimed Italian ancestor to file a Freedom of Information Act request with the USCIS and NARA to determine if the person ever filed to be a naturalized citizen, and the date they were naturalized (which must be after the date the next person in the lineage was born, or the chain is broken). And then you need to take all these documents to your nearest consulate office for an interview, then wait 6 months for a passport to be sent (if you pass).

Oh, and the documents must be state issued long form documents specifically prepared for an apostille for Italy, so that birthcertificate you've had since birth doesn't count.

It's definately a lot of work, but it shouldn't be too bad for me, since I have all of the information about my ancestors already, and all birth/death/marriage certificates are from the same city. I have the address for the Italian documents already, but those might take a while. Also, I need to go through the USCIS to get the statement of "No Record", which can also take some time. But I'm not in a rush, so it's not that big of a deal.

As an added advantage, anyone directly related to me (wife of >3 years, siblings) get citizenship with just a form since I've done all the paperwork. Also, anyone in the chain of ancestry I'm claiming (parents, grand parents) automatically get citizenship since I have to prove theirs to prove mine. They just need to request a passport.
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Old 06-10-08, 08:20 AM   #7
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I think this is awesome and I would do it even if it costs some cash and takes time.
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Old 06-10-08, 08:26 AM   #8
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I just looked this up, and I could actually do the same thing for Italy. Interesting.
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Old 06-10-08, 08:37 AM   #9
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Wouldn't there be tax implications?
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Old 06-10-08, 08:50 AM   #10
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I would go for it. If nothing else, you can avoid having a waiter spit in your drink in Europe by telling them that you are an Italian Citizen in lieu of one of those American dogs.
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Old 06-10-08, 09:25 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matta
Negatives:

- I wouldn't be able to join the FBI and might have a hard time running for political office
Not just the FBI but you wouldn't be able to get any sort of job that required a security clearance. At least not w/o giving it up and answering a whole bunch of questions about why you did it...
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Old 06-10-08, 09:27 AM   #12
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I've always thought it would be cool to do so. My grandfather was born in England so I've got a small connection, but I always figured I was SOL on getting citizenship. Maybe I should look it up.
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Old 06-10-08, 09:27 AM   #13
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Yes, I would do it. I wish I could get dual US/German citizenship but Germany is being a pain and only letting you be the citizen of one country.
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Old 06-10-08, 09:44 AM   #14
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I am able to get citizenship in Spain, but I haven't done so yet. I haven't decided if I want to.
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Old 06-10-08, 10:49 AM   #15
matta
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tracer Bullet
Wouldn't there be tax implications?
No, not as long as you live in the US, since Italy doesn't tax citizens living abroad. I wouldn't even need to file Italian taxes.

If I moved to Italy (which I have no intention of ever doing - maybe a vacation house, though), then I'd have to pay Italian taxes like normal, then US taxes on the difference between the Italian and US tax rates. I would have to file taxes in both countries. (Then again, I'd have to do all of that anyway if I was a US citizen living in Italy, so this doesn't have an impact on that).

I also won't have any Italian military obligation unless I move to Italy for a year or longer. Even then, I'm at an age where I can submit paperwork and get out of that. So no big deal.
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Old 06-10-08, 10:51 AM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nemein
Not just the FBI but you wouldn't be able to get any sort of job that required a security clearance. At least not w/o giving it up and answering a whole bunch of questions about why you did it...
In doing the ancestry research to make sure I qualify, I noticed that I have multiple relatives who are technically Italian/US dual citizens who worked in the US Secret Service. I wonder if they missed it on the background check (then again, they didn't actively seek citizenship documents, so maybe they found it and just didn't care).

Eh, I'm not really worried about security clearance.
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Old 06-10-08, 10:55 AM   #17
matta
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I think I'm going to start the process and we'll see where it goes. It takes several years and requires a considerable amount of leg work. If nothing else, it'll be good to just have all the documents and know my ancestry.

If anyone is interested in something similar, I'll start a thread with my experiences / process.

Right now, I've sent off for long form death certificates for all of my Italian relatives so that I can start the USCIS search for naturalization records ASAP. Maybe this weekend I'll work on my letters to Italy to get original birthcertificates. Anyone fluent in Italian on here? I know just about enough to get coffee and find the bathroom (but I'm learning).
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Old 06-10-08, 11:16 AM   #18
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This thread got me to look it up, and while I found my mom is a British citizen, I am not. Now I'm disappointed.
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Old 06-10-08, 04:47 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nemein
Not just the FBI but you wouldn't be able to get any sort of job that required a security clearance. At least not w/o giving it up and answering a whole bunch of questions about why you did it...
Not necessarily true. You can have DoD Secret level clearance and have dual citizenship with certian countries (my old roomate for instance). As for Top Secret, I think then you would have to give it up.
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Old 06-10-08, 05:03 PM   #20
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I have it, as I'm Irish first, then American second. I like being able to go through the appropriate security lines faster.

I wonder why it takes so long in your case, and the 'legwork' etc, my friend got it in 3 months, her mom is Scottish, and has dual citizenship, so for her the process was quite simple. Is it just the distance back you have to go to prove citizenship?
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Old 06-10-08, 05:45 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matta
Yeah, traveling in the EU isn't that big of a deal with a US passport, but it would be nice to dodge the long lines at Passport Control.
That only works one way now. I have US/UK citizenship. Before 9/11, I would hit the UK line in London and the US line on the way back. That's not possible now. Also you may be able to pass citizenship to your children but your grandchildren might not get the right. Italy may be different but my kids would be "overseas subjects" of Great Britian not full citizens. Also your children may get citizenship but with the new laws they may not get any benefits without living in the other country (ie no free health care, education, etc...)
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Old 06-10-08, 05:56 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kdogg
That only works one way now. I have US/UK citizenship. Before 9/11, I would hit the UK line in London and the US line on the way back. That's not possible now. Also you may be able to pass citizenship to your children but your grandchildren might not get the right. Italy may be different but my kids would be "overseas subjects" of Great Britian not full citizens. Also your children may get citizenship but with the new laws they may not get any benefits without living in the other country (ie no free health care, education, etc...)
I used it as recently as Last May doing it that way. Left the US, flew to Greece, pulled out EU Passport, and entered Greece.

Flew back to San Francisco, pulled out US Passport - Thanks. Welcome Home.
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Old 06-10-08, 06:38 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BadlyDrawnBoy
I wonder why it takes so long in your case, and the 'legwork' etc, my friend got it in 3 months, her mom is Scottish, and has dual citizenship, so for her the process was quite simple. Is it just the distance back you have to go to prove citizenship?
The real bottleneck is the naturalization check. You have to prove that the relative that immigrated to the US either 1) never became a US citizen or 2) that he/she became a US citizen after giving birth to the next person in the chain you're using.

To get that information (for either thing you're claiming), you have to submit a Freedom of Information Act request to the USCIS. It can take from 6 months to 2 years for them to reply, then you have to get that certified (so add a few months).

Then, you have to make an appointment at an Italian consulate. Depending on the consulate, I'm reading that it can take a year or more to get an appointment at some of them.

If a parent already has dual citizenship, then all you need is a birth certificate with apostille and a form. So I could see someone in that situation easily taking 3 months. It's a different situation for me, though, because the people I'm claiming weren't dual citizens but full Italian Citizens, so I have to prove they didn't renounce their citizenship before the chain moved on.

If approved, my kids will have it easy like your friend, though.

Last edited by matta; 06-10-08 at 06:42 PM.
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Old 06-10-08, 06:51 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kdogg
Also you may be able to pass citizenship to your children but your grandchildren might not get the right. Italy may be different but my kids would be "overseas subjects" of Great Britian not full citizens. Also your children may get citizenship but with the new laws they may not get any benefits without living in the other country (ie no free health care, education, etc...)
In Italy, citizens living abroad have full rights (and even get their own members in the Parlamento Italiano - there are two Deputies and a Senator for citizens residing in North/South America).

Citizenship in Italy is by blood. So if I prove that I'm of Italian blood (via dual citizenship), my children just need to prove that they're direct descents of me (via their birth certificate). Then, their children just prove they're descendants of them, etc. If my children don't get Italian citizenship, then future decents can start their chain of proof with me (up to my great grandchildren).

Last edited by matta; 06-10-08 at 06:56 PM.
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