The many benefits of dual citizenship are health care, education, business and entrepreneurship opportunities, fewer visa travel restrictions, and the chance to call another country your second home. And with more countries opening their doors to foreigners, especially for foreign investment, the chance of receiving another passport has never been easier. In the text below, read on as we’ll discuss the many ways you can obtain citizenship in another country.
Citizenship status by origin means the country offers foreigners the possibility to claim citizenship if there is valid evidence of the person’s blood relation to the country, or in other words, if the person’s parents, grandparents, or even great-grandparents had active citizen status. Similar, citizenship by repatriation is the person’s claim to citizenship if a blood relative has immigrated to another country, in an act of “returning” to their homeland. For example, during the Cold War era, five Balkan states formed an alliance, which resulted in the formation of the federation of Yugoslavia. During the following decades, many migrated to other foreign states, which made it possible for their children (although born in their current country of stay) to claim citizen status of any of these 5 states, as each is now independent. The word “repatriation” means returning someone or something to the country of origin, and the law has been in effect since the 50s, according to the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.
The benefit of this process is that, under the act of repatriation due to blood relations, you are entitled to the citizenship of your “homeland” without having to understand the language, history, or culture. It makes it easier for people whose parents were born in these countries to claim citizenship without having to live there or actively participate in the country’s politics.
Many countries have opened their doors to foreign investment, allowing them to claim citizenship after investing a certain sum of money into the country’s economy. The range of things you can invest in varies depending on the business and financial prospects of the country. Funds and entrepreneurship are especially popular for people who want to live and stay in the country of their choice, while real estate is a more popular option for foreign investors who are not able to physically be present. The whole process of claiming citizenship by investment is easy enough to understand. A person with a substantial net worth may choose to purchase a few properties or invest in real estate projects, offering him the chance to claim a special visa and, after 2 to 5 years, citizenship status. This has proven to be an especially successful method of attaining another country’s passport, as it does not require knowledge of the language, history, or culture. For example, Portugal is an EU state within the Schengen zone, giving you the chance to travel, study, or conduct business in any of the EU countries. Also, there are many agencies offering their service of maintaining and taking care of properties for a small fee in return.
Naturalization means claiming citizenship after spending a certain period of time in the country. If you happen to stay in the country for a longer period of time, after receiving the country’s visa for studying or working, you can then opt for a residence permit. Afterward, you can apply for permanent residence or citizenship. The time you need to spend and stay depends on the country. For example, Switzerland requires a stay period of 10 years, while countries like Argentina require only 2. The naturalization process, as opposed to the above-mentioned, does require knowledge of the history and language of the country as evidence of your integration into society. Of course, there are also other benefits, such as the retirement plan of the other land, owning property, or making it possible for your children to study and live there.
There must be no past convictions or legal violations, as well as proof that you are employed legally on a long-term basis. This method is popular among people who have spent a certain period studying or working in a foreign country and decided to stay and claim citizenship afterward.
The pinnacle of love, according to many, is building an everlasting relationship with the other person. Of course, marriage has its legal obligations as well, and according to the law, you can attain citizenship status if you marry a citizen of another state. This claim is almost universally accepted, the only difference being the exact conditions. Some countries require you to be married for anywhere from 2 to 6 years, with check-ups by government officials at least once a month. These precautions are there to prevent abuse of the law and fictitious marriages.
Other countries allow a much shorter period, a month or two, with fewer checks or restrictions. Official registration is sometimes asked, although not all countries require this – as a piece of paper allegedly is not evidence enough.
Exceptional contributions and services
This can apply to citizens who have made exceptional contributions and services to society, scientifically or otherwise. Artists, scientists, and people of merit who, over time, have shown astonishing results in different fields of interest to humanity. Of course, it’s worth mentioning how the contribution is general in nature and not restricted to the specific country offering citizenship.
Similar to the law of repatriation and blood relation to a former citizen of a country, you can claim citizenship by birthright. It means you can claim immediate citizenship if you were born within the borders of the country, even if your parents are not citizens. This policy is in power in 33 countries around the world, granting citizenship status to every person born on their territory.
It’s worth mentioning how citizenship can be claimed if the person has refugee status and sought asylum in another country fleeing from their wartorn homeland. Asylees or refugees can be granted citizenship if they apply for it after five years of permanent residence in the country of their choice. This law has also been established to offer people coming from terrible conditions a chance to seek a better life elsewhere. The policy was especially popular during the 90s in Europe due to conflicts in the Balkans, and in recent history, the Syrian refugee crisis put the policy to a test.
All these policies make it possible for people to travel, study, and live in another country, offering them equal rights and opportunities as born citizens. These policies are a testimony to the efforts of countries across the globe to look at and treat humanity as one.