Children born to Italian parents (mother or father) automatically acquire Italian citizenship ius sanguinis (by the right of blood). Citizenship is passed onto children with no generational limitation, on the condition that none of the ascendants have ever formally renounced Italian citizenship.
Transmission of citizenship through maternal lineage is possible but has limitations.
Under the Italian Law, a woman of Italian descent born before January 1, 1948 could only transmit Italian citizenship onto her children born after January 1, 1948.
Ascertainment of citizenship. When a person claims to be of Italian parentage or ancestry it is necessary to start a process aimed to the recognition of the uninterrupted transfer of citizenship from the Italian ascendant to the applicant.
The authorities legally appointed to ascertain these facts are the diplomatic-consular missions in the country of residence when the applicant resides abroad and the officials at the Vital Statistics office (“Anagrafe”) of the city of residence when the applicant resides in Italy.