The German Law on Nationality and Citizenship is rather complex and has undergone many changes in the past. However, some aspects have remained the same. We have compiled updated information on the topics that we are most asked about. Please make sure you read and understand the information provided below before contacting the competent German mission. This will help us to assist you better. Thank you.
You think you might be eligible for a German passport, but you are not sure? Please find more information about determination of German citizenship here.
Determination of German citizenship
In general, German citizenship is not established through birth on German territory but by descent from a German legal mother and/or a German legal father.
Obtaining German citizenship
Children born abroad do not acquire German nationality by birth if their German parent(s) were themselves born abroad after 31 December 1999 and at the time of the child’s birth were ordinarily resident abroad, provided such children acquire another nationality upon birth. Children that fall into this category may acquire German nationality retroactively from birth if their parents register the birth with the German authorities before the child’s first birthday.
Non-acquisition of German nationality for children born abroad to German parents
There are several ways to lose German citizenship; please find further information regarding the loss of German citizenship here.
Loss of German citizenship
The German law on citizenship mandates that German citizens who voluntarily apply for and accept Australian citizenship will automatically lose the German citizenship if they have not been granted a permission to retain the German citizenship prior to becoming Australian.
Retaining of German citizenship