German Citizenship: who can get one and how

We already reported on German visa types and residence permits. Today we inform about another long-term relocation possibility to Germany: Germany citizenship. European citizenship can open many doors for those who want to relocate permanently, do business in Europe, open companies, work, or study abroad. In this case, having German citizenship offers numerous benefits, such as the advantage of obtaining a long-dreamed European passport. Thus, without a doubt, life in Europe becomes much easier.

However, it is necessary to understand who is entitled to German citizenship and how to apply for it. German citizenship has several rules, particularities and follows the concept “ius sanguinis”, the right to blood. HereLocation will tell you the necessary basic information and explain how the process works.

Who is entitled to German citizenship?

To obtain German nationality, it is necessary to have German ancestry or affiliation, to be born in Germany, to be adopted or naturalized for the time of residence (after 8 years of living in Germany).

If a parent has German citizenship, you may also be entitled to dual citizenship. In the case of the father, it is necessary to be recognized as a legitimate child before the age of 23, if the father and mother are not married.

If only the mother is German and is not married to the father, the child can still apply for citizenship. In that case, paternal recognition is not required.

German citizenship by residence time

As in other countries, it is possible to apply for German citizenship after a certain period of residence. Therefore, proof of 8 years of residency in the country is required. For example, if you work in Germany and have lived in the country for more than 8 years, you can apply for German nationality.

German citizenship by marriage

The rules for applying for citizenship for those who are married to another German person require a residency of at least 3 years in the country. In addition, you must have been married for at least two years and have a German certificate of at least B1.

How to apply for German citizenship

If you are a foreigner, the first step in applying for German citizenship is to contact the Consulate in your jurisdiction to verify that you have the right. You must fill in a form (be very careful when filling it out, do everything as you are told to avoid delays), and send it to the Consulate. Those responsible will receive your documentation and check if everything is right to proceed.

If you live in Germany, you should contact the Department of Immigration and Nationalization in the region you live in. You will have to take a test that confers your German knowledge, and you will need to deliver the necessary documents to that department.

Documents required for German citizenship

Each case may require different documentation. Despite this, in general, these are the documents requested:

  • Current valid passport
  • Current visa in the country
  • Proof of income from the last 3 months
  • Proof of schooling
  • Verification of fixed residence in the country
  • Explanatory letter on the motivation to apply for German citizenship
  • Curriculum vitae
  • Biography with personal data, cities where you lived/studied, what led you to go to Germany and how was the process
  • Current photo 3 × 4
  • German level certificate at least B1
  • Einbürgerungstest certificate
  • Completed and signed form
  • Form completed and signed by the employee (if there is an employer)

Remember that a marriage certificate is still required if that is the reason for applying for German citizenship. For children, the father’s and mother’s documents will be required.

All these essential documents must be translated into German. Among them, there are school transcripts, biography, and motivation letter. After submitting all documents at the Consulate, the applicant will be notified of the process’s outcome. In case of a positive notification, you’ll be able to get a Germany passport made.  

HereLocation is your reliable partner if you have been a resident of Germany for a long time and decide it´s time to apply for a Germany citizenship. Contact us today with all your questions also about our other relocation services. We are happy to hear from you!