With the approval of Law Decree No. 130/2020, which en-tered into force on last October 22, 2020, the Italian Go-vernment has partially amended the provisions that had been introduced at the end of 2018 with Law Decree No. 113/2018 (the so called "Decreto Salvini" on safety and im-migration).

These amendments resulted in the reduction of the proces-sing time of Italian citizenship by marriage and by residency applications, which have been reduced from 48 months to 36 months.

The new timing applies to applications that are submitted on or after October 22, 2020, therefore to any application submitted before such a date the "old" 48-month term con-tinues to apply.

This change is a step forward in the direction of simplifying and streamlining Italian citizenship applications, even if it does not bring back the initial timing provided by law befo-re the "Decreto Salvini", according to which Italian authori-ties had up to "only" 24 months to complete the process.

Proof of knowledge of Italian language – which is the other requirement that was introduced in late 2018 by the "Decreto Salvini" - remains mandatory, therefore applicants shall provide at least a B1 level Italian language certificate issued by an educational institution approved by the Italian Ministry of Education ("MIUR") or Ministry of Foreign affairs ("MAECI").

Along with these changes, the Italian Government has ma-de available, from October 21, 2020, a new helpline with No. 3 contact numbers – No. 1: 06-46539955 active on Mon-days/Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. – No. 2: 3346909996 active on Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. and No. 3: 3346909859 active on Fridays from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. - that can be called to receive information and follow-ups on pending citizenship applications. Hopefully this new tool will help applicants in monitoring the evolution of their applications and get a more direct contact with the authori-ties.

LCA Corporate Immigration Team is available for any query regarding Italian citizenship applications and will keep you updated in case of any news in this regard.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.