Fingerprints to request criminal records


June 13, 2012 by JL Walker

So, the first step is to start the process of sending my official criminal records to the Italian government. But to do that, I first need to get an official copy of my fingerprints, send them to the FBI, get a translation and have it authenticated. But before I do that, I need to figure out where I can get fingerprints recorded and how to make an appointment.

I’m beginning here partly because I’ve never had to do anything like this before during past bureaucratic paperwork. This one portion of the application also going to require talking with various different offices in both the US and Italy.

Why do I need to send my fingerprints to the FBI?
The Italian government needs to check my criminal records in my home country before accepting me as a citizen. This requirement is understandable because it prevents people with who have committed serious crimes from becoming citizens. But it does kinda makes you feel like a criminal, even if you have no record at all!

After I get this ball rolling, I can start looking into other steps on my to do list.

Where to begin
The FBI website has an official form that I’ve printed out, where I will need to place my fingerprints. More information is available on this website:

I have a few guesses as to where I can get my fingerprints taken:

  1. Prefecture. This office takes care of citizenship applications so they might provide this service
  2. US Consulate. They might provide the service since I would have gone to a police station in the US to get this done
  3. Questura. The Italian police station, the questura, might record my fingerprints for me, but it’s such an unusual request, they might not understand what I’m requesting
  4. DIY. If all the above turn out to be dead ends, I’ll just get some ink and fill it out myself!

When discussing this topic on a Facebook forum (the Italian Reflections group), someone suggested I go to the local Prefecture. I’ll give them a call to try to set up an appointment. And while I’m there, I can try to get some other parts of the application done, and hopefully speak with someone who knows something about the whole process.


6 thoughts on “Fingerprints to request criminal records

  1. […] 1, 2012 by JL Walker Still no official fingerprints Options 1 and 2 of where to get fingerprints registered have turned out to be a bust. I called the Prefecture, who assured me that they can’t really […]

  2. Gem says:

    Hi! Thanks for your post. I finally got a positive answer at the Questura Scientifica (the forensic branch of the police) who agreed to take my prints and who also knew what letter to write to accompany my prints. Now im hoping my FBI form comes back quickly so that i can proceed with the rest of the game. 🙂 Btw, this post also helped me a lot: All the best!

    • JL Walker says:

      Hi Gem! Just make sure you have enough time to get everything done within the 6-month deadline. The Prefettura in Milan has recently posted clear info on documents being valid for 6 months (excluding things like a birth certificate). I’m in the process of starting over since my docs have expired….

  3. amy stover says:

    Dear Gem, I got fingerprinted while in the US and was mailed the FBI certificate here in Italy to finally get the ball rolling (I’ve been in Italy 25 years and married to an Italian for 30!) But now I’m confused. Is it really necessary to get the police clearances from states I lived in long ago (NJ, NY, MA?) or will the Questura be happy with just the FBI certificate? What was your experience?

    • JL Walker says:

      Hi Amy! Congrats on your 25 years! And for making the decision to get dual citizenship.
      I actually haven’t completed the process yet because my documents “expired” (other than paperwork like your birth certificate, docs are only valid for 6 months!). I read somewhere, maybe the Prefettura di Milano website, that they do want background checks from all the states you lived in since the age of 14, and because of the US’s federalist system, that technically includes both the FBI and state governments. I was in the process of getting both federal and state background checks done before my roadblock.
      Best of luck to you and let me know how everything works out!

  4. […] who has followed along on my blog might remember that I started this game awhile ago, way back in the summer of 2012. After many months (ok, over a year) of wading through Italian and US bureaucracy, Milan’s […]

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Date to submit applicationSeptember 10th, 2015
Time to submit my application for dual citizenship!
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