German nationality

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Article 16 of the Basic Law - a work by Dani Karavan on the glass panes on the Spree side at the Jakob-Kaiser-Haus of the Bundestag in Berlin

The German nationality is the affiliation of an individual to the German government , the Federal Republic of Germany . From this - as is generally the case with civil rights - specific rights and obligations for German citizens are derived. At the request of the person concerned, possession of German citizenship is established and proven with the citizenship certificate.

The terms "German citizen" and "German"

Citizenship is entered in the German passport , but it is no legal proof of their possession.
The certificate of citizenship of the Federal Republic of Germany documented by documentary evidence to have German nationality in cases of doubt.

German within the meaning of Section 1 of the Citizenship Act (StAG) is anyone who has German citizenship.

The German identity card or passport are sufficient for the rebuttable prima facie evidence of possession of German citizenship; they merely establish the reasonable assumption that the holder of the ID card is a German citizen. A citizenship card proves that the person concerned was a German citizen at the time it was issued. This document does not have a validity period, but after a certain period of time it can lose its evidence.

Section 3 names the six types of acquisition of ownership:
1. through birth ( Section 4 ),
2. through a declaration that you want to become a German citizen, according to Section 5 of the StAG,
3. through adoption as a child ( Section 6 ),
4. through exhibition the certificate in accordance with Section 15 (1) or (2) of the Federal Expellees Act ( Section 7 ),
4a. by transferring as a German without German citizenship within the meaning of Article 116, Paragraph 1 of the Basic Law ( § 40a ),
5. for a foreigner by naturalization (§§ 8 to 16, 40b and 40c).

Citizenship is also acquired by law anyone who has been treated by German authorities as a German citizen for twelve years and is not responsible for this (Section 3 (2) StAG).

If the formal proof of possession of German citizenship cannot be provided via the certificates or the naturalization certificate in accordance with No. 2 to 5 of § 3 StAG, it will be proven by an officially issued citizenship card at the request of the person concerned. An issued German identity card or passport therefore only indicates German citizenship, but is not binding evidence.

By law, all German citizens are also citizens of the European Union .

Going beyond the definition of the national, Article 116 of the Basic Law for the Federal Republic of Germany (GG) also refers to the category of the German national . This ethnically determined category is not the same as that of the German citizen . Since the change in the law that came into force on August 1, 1999, the group of status Germans defined by Article 116 can be viewed as negligibly small.

In legal history, the concept of the national is a departure from the narrower concept of citizenship .

Legal bases

The regular German citizenship law is based on the one hand on the Reich and Citizenship Act (RuStAG) of July 22, 1913, which laid down the principle of descent . It was characterized by the concept of folk nation , which had the goal of the nation and as ethnically presented homogeneous German people into agreement. With effect from January 1, 2000, it was renamed the Nationality Act . On the other hand, the nationality law is based on several regulations created with effect from January 1, 1991 in the then Aliens Act of July 9, 1990, which were originally intended to facilitate the naturalization of young foreigners (Sections 85 to 91 AuslG), but were later extended to adults and with Effect from January 1, 2005 by Art. 5 of the Immigration Act of July 30, 2004 have been incorporated into the Citizenship Act (today § 10 to § 12b  StAG). After the removal of the provisions of nationality law from the law on foreigners and the expiry of the special nationality law, all essential regulations on nationality are now combined in one law .

Art. 116 of the Basic Law deliberately defines the term “German” more broadly than people with German citizenship, namely including status Germans , because for historical reasons many groups belonged to Germany not homogeneously. Especially after 1945/49 there are many and detailed special regulations in connection with Nazi legislation ,issues of expellees in Central and Eastern Europe (→  Volksdeutsche ) as well as relations with the German Democratic Republic .

The Federal Republic of Germany used due to the initial claim to sole representation , a foreign policy and international law ambivalent relationship with the GDR, as reflected in the legislation reflected. Due to their German citizenship, citizens of the GDR were also federal citizens according to the German legal conception . So they could at any time - even without permanent relocation, e.g. B. on the occasion of a visit in the federal territory - received a German passport and thus travel on to third countries for which your GDR passport was not valid or whose border control stamp in the passport could have caused you disadvantages when you return to the GDR. While the West German passport was being used, the GDR passport was deposited with West German offices.

With a view to the clarification of the citizenship of the Germans living in the former German eastern areas beyond the Oder-Neisse border , the fate of citizenship law of persons who were naturalized against their will in the occupied non-German territories during the time of National Socialism in part against their will and in served in the Wehrmacht , and for those who were politically and racially persecuted by the National Socialists between 1933 and 1945 who were expatriated after fleeing abroad and in some cases acquired a different nationality, the German Bundestag issued several special regulations under nationality law ( see also the special nationality law ) ; these regulations expired on December 15, 2010.

In connection with Brexit , a transitional regulation to the Citizenship Act was passed that affects the naturalization of British and German citizens.

Acquisition of German citizenship through legal automatism

Citizenship is acquired ex lege (by law) if certain requirements are met.

In the case of birth by a German parent (cases of descent)

  • Today, a child acquires German citizenship through birth if at least one parent is German at the time (principle of descent ).
    Before 1975, a child could only acquire German citizenship at birth through its father or unmarried mother. Following a change in the law based on a decision by the Federal Constitutional Court, a person born in wedlock on or after January 1, 1975 acquired German citizenship if one of the parents (regardless of gender) was German; Until July 1, 1993, children born out of wedlock only acquired them if the child's mother was a German citizen. Since then, the illegitimate father has also been able to convey it, if
    • he is german,
    • an effective according to German legal determination or acknowledgment of paternity exists
    • and the recognition of paternity or the paternity determination procedure was carried out or initiated before the child has reached the age of 23.
  • A foundling found in Germany is deemed to be a child of a German until proven otherwise.
  • Exceptionally, however, the child of a German does not acquire German citizenship through birth abroad if
    • this biological parent was born abroad on January 1, 2000 or later and
    • continue to live there and
    • otherwise the child would not be stateless .
However, this can be prevented by the parents requesting the birth (authentication) to be entered in the German birth register within one year ; to meet the deadline it is sufficient if the application within this period the competent diplomatic mission received ( § 4 para. 4 sentence 2 of the Nationality Act).

The decisive factor for the acquisition of German citizenship derived from one parent is always and exclusively legal parenting. A German nationality for the child cannot be derived directly from a purely genetic descent from a German citizen. This concerns z. B. Cases in which only the biological father is a German citizen, but the child's mother was married to a foreigner at the time of birth , who is therefore considered the legal father, or in cases of artificial insemination abroad and the child being carried by a foreigner Non-German surrogate mother (regardless of whose sperm and whose egg cell were used for fertilization).

By adoption

Since January 1, 1977, German citizenship can also be acquired through adoption . Minors automatically acquire German citizenship upon adoption by law ( § 6 StAG) if one of the adopters is German. The time at which the application for adoption is submitted is decisive. A separate application to acquire citizenship is not required in these cases. If the person to be adopted is already over 18 years old at the time of the adoption application, acquisition of citizenship according to § 6 StAG is not possible even if the family court later pronounces the adoption with the effects of the adoption of minors (so-called full adoption according to § 1772 BGB). This group of people is referred to the regular naturalization.

Status German (transitional rule of the StAG reform)

Germans within the meaning of Art. 116 Paragraph 1 Alt. 2 GG (Germans without German citizenship) and ethnic German repatriates recognized before August 1, 1999 acquired citizenship in accordance with § 40a StAG a. F. on this reference date. Ethnic repatriates who received a certificate of late repatriation status after July 31, 1999 also acquire German citizenship when they receive the certificate ( Section 7 StAG). Previously, this group of people had a naturalization claim.

Born in Germany (so-called option model)

A child born in Germany after January 1, 2000, whose parents are both foreigners , is German if one parent has been legally resident in Germany for eight years at the time of birth and has an unlimited right of residence ( Section 4 (3) StAG ).

For children born between January 1, 1990 and January 1, 2000, the regulation of § 40b StAG opened up the possibility of additional acquisition of German citizenship through naturalization for a period of one year. The prerequisite for this was that on January 1, 2000, the child had lawfully habitually resided in the Federal Republic of Germany and had not yet reached the age of 10 and that the requirements of Section 4 (3) StAG were met at the time of their birth . About 50,000 people were naturalized through this transitional arrangement.

Dual citizenship

Option obligation until December 19, 2014

Children who acquire German citizenship - either by virtue of the law or because of naturalization in accordance with Section 40b StAG - generally have at least one other citizenship. Between the ages of 18 and 23 they were until December 19, 2014 according to § 29 StAG a. F. generally obliged to declare to the state authority whether they wanted to keep their German citizenship, for which purpose they usually had to give up the other citizenship (s), or whether they preferred the other citizenship and waived the German one (obligation to declare , Option compulsory). Failure to make this declaration (not opting out) also led to the loss of German citizenship according to this regulation. In 2013, the option procedure was concluded for around 3,300 people in the first year affected (namely those born in 1990 who would turn 23 in 2013). Of these, around 2,400 had opted for German and 32 for foreign citizenship by the end of 2011. In the years 2014 to 2017, according to earlier calculations, the option procedure would have to be terminated for around 7,000 people annually, after which - from 2018 - the number of those affected by the consequences of a given or missing option declaration should jump to over 40,000 or around 50,000 people annually increase. From 2013 to 2022, only dual nationals born between 1990 and 1999 and naturalized on the basis of Section 40b StAG would be affected. 68% of them also have Turkish , 14.5% citizenship of a successor state of Yugoslavia , 3.7% Iranian citizenship, and a little more than one percent each have Vietnamese , Pakistani or Afghan citizenship.

New regulation of the option obligation from December 20, 2014

The long-standing dispute about making dual citizenship possible for Ius-soli Germans has led to a compromise solution with the formation of the grand coalition in December 2013 and the coalition agreement that was concluded. By the second law amending the nationality law , § 29 StAG was changed to the effect that an option obligation for persons who grew up in Germany no longer exists. Pursuant to Section 29 (1) a StAG, this includes those persons who up to the age of 21 have usually been in Germany for eight years, who have attended school in Germany for six years, or who have a school-leaving certificate or vocational training completed in Germany feature. As domestically grown applies who has a similar close relationship with Germany in the individual case and one for the option obligation under the circumstances of particular hardship would mean.

The new regulation does not allow the mere possession of German citizenship for retention beyond the age of 23. Only those who grew up in Germany and thus developed close ties with Germany should not lose their German citizenship in the future. Those affected can now ask whether they grew up in Germany according to the definition of the law and are thus exempt from the obligation to opt early after they have graduated from school, after six years of schooling or after they have reached the age of eight or have resided in Germany through the competent nationality authority Have a binding clarification and thus receive legal certainty about your nationality status at an early stage ( § 29 Paragraph 5 StAG new version).

An old case regulation was not provided. Anyone who has lost German citizenship according to the old version of § 29 StAG can only regain it through renewed naturalization. Those who do not fall under the new regulation must opt ​​as before.

The number of cases determined in previous years under the validity of the previous option regulation must be corrected due to the new regulation. In the future, the nationality authorities will normally also have to check whether the person concerned grew up in Germany. In 90% of cases, however, there is no need to check whether foreign citizenship is at all and, if so, whether it was given up in good time or whether - in the case of an application for retention - the requirements for accepting multiple citizenship are met. In future, the administration will only be responsible for this test for the small group of Ius-soli children who did not grow up in Germany.

As far as there is still an option obligation, a retention permit can be granted - as before - in exceptional cases according to Section 29 (4) StAG , which allows the retention of both nationalities. This must be granted if giving up or losing foreign citizenship is unreasonable or not possible or if, in the case of naturalization, multiple citizenship according to § 12 StAG would have to be accepted.

Acquisition through treatment as a German citizen

With effect from August 28, 2008, the legislature closed a loophole regulating the citizenship of persons who are not German citizens but who have been treated as such by German authorities for a very long time (new Section 3 (2) StAG). The beneficiaries of this regulation are primarily people who, after the World Wars, failed to regain their German citizenship, which was revoked by the abolition of affiliation norms, by submitting declarations, as well as their descendants. The prerequisite is that the person concerned has been treated by German authorities as a German citizen for twelve years and that this incorrect treatment has not been applied - e.g. B. by false information or concealment of relevant facts - is responsible. Particularly beneficiaries are those who have been issued with a German nationality card, a German passport or a German identity card. The acquisition of German citizenship then acts back to the point in time at which the acquisition of citizenship was assumed in the case of treatment as a citizen. It also extends to descendants of the person concerned ( Section 3 (2) StAG).

Naturalization - acquisition by administrative act


The acquisition by administrative act takes place by handing over a naturalization certificate.

The naturalization granted upon application. This is an acquisition process for foreign citizens or stateless persons . In this case, citizenship is not acquired by law, but through an administrative act :

  • Naturalization by virtue of a legal claim (mandatory naturalization, eligible naturalization) takes place if the prerequisites for a legal claim are met, without the discretion of the nationality authority:
    • Restitution of National Socialist injustice according to Art. 116 Paragraph 2 GG;
    • solidified immigration ( § 10 StAG), i.e. for eight years habitual legal residence in Germany without significant criminal offenses, without membership in or even only support from an extremist organization that is directed against the free democratic basic order , also sufficient knowledge of German and knowledge of legal and social order as well as the living conditions in Germany, no self-made use of benefits according to SGB ​​II or SGB ​​XII as well as the willingness to give up previous citizenship; In the case of successful participation in an integration course , the period is shortened to seven years and in the case of special integration achievements (particularly higher language skills) it can be shortened to six years;
    • Reduction of statelessness; after five years of legal residence of a stateless person born in Germany who submitted the application in good time ( Art. 2 of the Law on the Reduction of Statelessness ).
  • Should naturalization (as a rule naturalization) in the case of willingness to give up previous citizenship, whereby the citizenship authority may only exceptionally and if there are special justifying reasons refuse to acquire citizenship:
    • Spouses or life partners of German citizens ( § 9 StAG);
    • beyond the existence of a marriage or civil partnership if custody of a child of German nationality exists.
In these cases, the classification into the German living conditions must be guaranteed. The examination of this classification is not defined in more detail by the legislature; the provisional application notes of BMI seen in no. before a three-year domestic residence and a two-year existence of the marriage or civil partnership.
  • Optional naturalization (discretionary naturalization), in which the nationality authority may carry out the naturalization at its due discretion :
    • Foreign citizens or stateless persons, if there is no reason for deportation against them and their maintenance is secured ( § 8 StAG);
    • Former German citizens living abroad and their children or adopted children, if there are no grounds for deportation against them ( Section 13 StAG);
    • Foreign citizens who live abroad and have special ties to the Federal Republic of Germany ( § 14 StAG).

In principle, the previous nationality must be given up. However, this should be avoided in a number of cases ( § 12 StAG), namely:

  • generally for EU citizens or citizens of Switzerland ,
  • if the law of the foreign country does not provide for a withdrawal from the previous nationality,
  • if the foreign state regularly refuses to grant release from citizenship,
  • if the release from the previous nationality is refused for reasons for which the naturalization applicant is not responsible,
  • if the dismissal is made dependent on unreasonable conditions,
  • if there is no decision on an application for dismissal within a reasonable time,
  • if the loss of the previous citizenship encounters disproportionate difficulties in the case of older applicants for naturalization and the denial of naturalization would represent a particular hardship,
  • if the naturalization applicant would suffer considerable disadvantages, in particular of an economic nature or of a financial nature, which go beyond the loss of civil rights, if the previous citizenship were given up,
  • if the naturalization applicant is in possession of a travel document within the meaning of Art. 28 of the Convention of July 28, 1951 on the Legal Status of Refugees,
  • if an international treaty so provides.

The group of people who can assert a right to citizenship was expanded by two decrees of 2019: It now also includes the descendants of people who were born in wedlock before April 1, 1953 as the child of a German mother who was expatriated and a foreign father, as well as illegitimate children born before July 1, 1993 of forcibly expatriated German fathers and foreign mothers for whom the recognition or determination of paternity according to German law was effective before the age of 23. Even if these ancestors took on a new citizenship abroad, this does not preclude naturalization if the emigration was due to persecution. For those entitled with a background of Nazi persecution, proof of the ability to support is waived and the required language level is reduced to simple German language skills. The regulation applies with a “generation cut”: Descendants born after the year 2000 of victims of Nazi persecution should be able to use the facilities, but their children will only be naturalized if naturalization has been applied for by January 1, 2021. However, there is no legal claim; On January 30, 2020, the Bundestag rejected an application by the Greens supported by the opposition parties .

Numbers, statistics

The Federal Statistical Office ( Destatis ) publishes annual statistics on naturalization in Germany.

Between 2007 and 2017, between 94,000 and 113,000 foreigners were naturalized each year, before that between 100,000 and 313,000 foreigners per year in 1990–2006 and between 34,000 and 69,000 foreigners per year in 1981–1989. There are the following figures on origin: In 2015, 19,700 Turkish citizens, 5900 Poles, 4200 Ukrainians, 3800 Kosovars, 3400 Iraqis and 3400 Italians were naturalized.

Following the Brexit referendum on June 23, 2016, there was a massive increase in the number of naturalization applications from UK citizens . In the two years 2016 and 2017 alone, a total of 10,358 Brits received German citizenship. This is more than twice as many naturalizations as the total number of British naturalizations in the 15 years between 2000 and 2015.

Loss of citizenship

The Basic Law forbids in Article 16, Paragraph 1, Clause 1, the withdrawal of German citizenship, i. H. there is no expatriation in the Federal Republic of Germany . Withdrawal is only understood to mean measures or regulations through which someone loses their nationality against or without their will and cannot avoid this loss. This also applies to a citizenship acquired through naturalization. But the citizen is also fundamentally protected against an avoidable loss, whereby a loss with the owner's will is unproblematic because such a process does not constitute an encroachment on Article 16.1 sentence 1 of the Basic Law. The Citizenship Act contains the following provisions for loss with the will of the person concerned:

  • Dismissal at the request of the citizen if he wants to acquire another one and has been assured of this by another state,
  • Waiver if the citizen also has other nationalities; the waiver may not result in statelessness,
  • Adoption by a foreigner,
  • Declaration according to the option model ( see above ) that the citizen does not want to keep German citizenship,
  • Not opting: Failure to make a declaration according to the option model that the citizen wants to keep German citizenship or his second citizenship after the citizenship authority has given a formal and timely notice. The constitutionality of this act of loss is very controversial, as it may also occur if the dual national concerned wants to keep both citizenships (i.e. can also occur against his will and thus amount to a withdrawal).

Article 16, Paragraph 1, Sentence 2 of the Basic Law contains a reservation to the effect that an avoidable loss of citizenship is possible through an official order or a court decision on the basis of a law if the addressee of the withdrawal does not become stateless as a result. The Nationality Act provides for a loss of nationality in the following cases:

  • Acquisition of another citizenship upon application by the citizen, unless he has previously applied for and received a retention permit from the German citizenship authority (regulations have been checked for constitutionality). However, since August 28, 2007, a retention permit is no longer required to accept citizenship of an EU member state or the Swiss Confederation . In the case of German Jews who emigrated to Israel and thereby automatically became citizens of Israel under the Israeli Return Act, it is argued that they did not apply for naturalization in Israel; consequently, the provisions on “acquiring another citizenship” do not apply to them. This is countered by the German side that it is possible to prevent the acquisition of Israeli citizenship by a corresponding declaration of intent;
  • Voluntary entry into the armed forces of a foreign state , if the German also has the citizenship of the foreign state ( Section 28 StAG); However, since July 6, 2011, the loss of German citizenship no longer occurs if it is a member state of the European Union , the European Free Trade Association ( EFTA ), the North Atlantic Defense Alliance ( NATO ) or one of the members listed in Section 41 (1 ) Residence Ordinance states mentioned.
  • Withdrawal of naturalization if the administrative act was obtained through fraudulent deception, threats or bribery or through intentionally incorrect or incomplete information that was essential for its adoption ( Section 35 StAG). Such a withdrawal is also permissible against the background of Article 16.1 sentence 2 GG, because Article 16.1 sentence 2 GG protects the citizen against arbitrary withdrawal (e.g. for racial, political or religious reasons) and before wants to protect statelessness and not illegal naturalization a grandfathering would give.

Furthermore, the German citizenship is lost if

  • the German citizenship of the parent, from whom the person concerned derives their own German nationality, is withdrawn and the person concerned has not yet reached the age of five ( Section 17 (2) StAG) or if
  • due to decisions under other laws (outside of the Citizenship Act), the parent's status of the relevant parent or another attribute of the parent required for the acquisition of a child is subsequently omitted - which would result in the retroactive loss of the German nationality of a third party - but also only if the age limit of is not reached five years (Section 17 Paragraph 3 StAG), e.g. B. if German citizenship is (only) derived from the father and there is a successful contestation of paternity .

Citizenship in civil law

When assessing civil legal relationships by German authorities and courts, citizenship is taken into account in order to protect cultural identity and international decision-making (→  international private law ). It forms the connecting factor in the marriage law , kinship , adoption , inheritance , naming rights , legal capacity and legal capacity , declaration of death , guardianship , care and guardianship , which decides which law is applied in Germany.

Special nationality law

  • Law regulating questions of nationality (StAngRegG) of February 22, 1955 ( Federal Law Gazette I p. 65 = Federal Law Gazette III FNA 102–5), last amended by Art. 3 § 1 of the law of July 15, 1999 (Federal Law Gazette. I p. 1618), repealed on December 15, 2010 (Federal Law Gazette I p. 1864), regarding the citizenship of the (predominantly displaced) German people
  • Second law regulating questions of nationality (StAngRegG 2) of 17 May 1956 (Federal Law Gazette I p. 431 = Federal Law Gazette III FNA 102-6), last amended by Art. 9 § 2 No. 1 of the law of 18 July 1979 (BGBl. I p. 1061), repealed on December 15, 2010 (BGBl. I p. 1864), regarding the citizenship of Austrians
  • Act to amend the Reich and Citizenship Act (RuStAÄndG 1974) of December 20, 1974 (Federal Law Gazette I p. 3714), amended by Art. 2 of the Act of July 15, 1999; the transitional regulations essentially repealed at the end of July 31, 2006 by Art. 2 of the law of February 19, 2006 (Federal Law Gazette I p. 334).
  • Law on the Affairs of Displaced Persons and Refugees ( Federal Displaced Persons Act - BVFG) of 19 May 1953 (Federal Law Gazette I p. 201 = Federal Law Gazette III FNA 240-1) in the currently applicable version ( text of the Federal Expellees Act ).

Legal and political history of German citizenship

North German Confederation, German Empire, Weimar Republic

For a long time there was no German nation-state and therefore no uniform German citizenship. The individual German territorial states began in the 19th century, following the French model, to introduce regulations on citizenship in their constitutions. The first regulations were those of the Kingdom of Bavaria (1818), Kingdom of Württemberg (1819) and the Grand Duchy of Hesse (1820). The Paulskirche constitution of 1848 provided that a Reich citizenship should be introduced and a Reich law should determine the conditions of acquisition and loss of this citizenship. However, this regulation was not applied.

In the North German Confederation , the 1867 general government purposes of a State converted the 1870 territorial expanded and in 1871 in Empire was renamed, there was not a German citizen. Rather, the nationalities of the respective member states existed , e.g. B. those of Prussia , Bavaria , Württemberg, etc., continued. With the law of June 1, 1870, federal membership was introduced in the North German Confederation, which was mediated through citizenship in one of the states of the North German Confederation. These provisions also ensured that the regulation of citizenship in all member states was based on the same principles (by virtue of descent or naturalization ). The law passed to the German Reich and remained in force until the end of 1913.

The German Reich and Citizenship Act (RuStAG) of July 22, 1913 was linked to the member state citizenship and continued to apply unchanged in the Weimar Republic .

Inhabitants of the German colonies

The establishment of German colonies and protected areas in Africa, China and Polynesia did not lead to the people living there becoming Germans, they were regarded as “members of the protected areas” . The Protected Areas Act of 1886 and 1900 regulated the special granting of Reich citizenship to foreigners and “natives” in Section 9. These regulations were mainly replaced by the provisions of the Reich and Citizenship Act of 1913 and the members of the former colonies were placed under the mandate of the victorious powers with the Treaty of Versailles in 1919 .

time of the nationalsocialism

Naturalization certificate of a person resettled from
Galicia as a result of the Hitler-Stalin Pact

As an instrument of the National Socialist racial ideology, the citizenship law of the “ Third Reich ” was of great importance and subject to numerous changes.

On the one hand, the Nazi policy of persecution revoked German citizenship from certain people, especially Jews and Gypsies . Other groups of people such as ethnic Germans and people of German origin, on the other hand, were included in German citizenship as a desired increase in population in the course of the so-called Germanization and to gain living space in the east , but also in the revision of German territorial losses as a result of the Versailles Treaty to Belgium and France.

With the law on the revocation of naturalizations and the revocation of German citizenship of July 1933, naturalizations that were considered undesirable from the period between November 9, 1918 and January 30, 1933 could be revoked.

In 1934, the independent citizenship of the German member states was abolished in favor of a uniform German citizenship. This was a result of the so-called Gleichschaltungsgesetz , the law on the reconstruction of the Reich of January 30, 1934, which was followed on February 5 by the decisive ordinance on German citizenship issued by Reich Interior Minister Wilhelm Frick . For the first time there was now only one Reich citizenship (Section 1 (2) of the ordinance: "There is only one German citizenship [Reich citizenship]."). In the preamble of the Gleichschaltungsgesetz it was stated accordingly: "The referendum and the Reichstag elections of November 12, 1933 have shown that the German people have merged into an insoluble, internal unity across all internal political boundaries and contradictions."

Through the Reich Citizenship Act of September 15, 1935, the uniform German citizenship introduced in 1934 was weakened during the Second World War as part of the civil administration of militarily conquered areas with several ordinances. It was converted into a citizenship with graduated rights according to racist criteria: after all, there were Reich citizens, (German) citizens, citizens on revocation, protection members (of the German Reich) and foreigners.

After the “Anschluss” of Austria , the “Ordinance on German Citizenship in the Land of Austria” of July 3, 1938 gave Austrians German citizenship. The naturalization of Adolf Hitler , who as a born Austrian had meanwhile been stateless, had already taken place in 1932.

According to the Eleventh Ordinance to the Reich Citizenship Act of November 25, 1941, German Jews who emigrated and deported to labor and extermination camps lost their German citizenship if they had taken their “habitual residence” abroad.

With the Austrian Citizenship Transition Act in 1945, all those who were Austrian at the time of the Anschluss and who had not taken on foreign citizenship between 1938 and 1945 were given Austrian citizenship back.

Occupation, Federal Republic of Germany and German Democratic Republic

On September 20, 1945, the Allied Control Council repealed the Nuremberg Laws and thus also the Reich Citizenship Law and the following ordinances through the Control Council Act No. 1 . German citizenship was retained after the Nazi era . According to the will of the occupying powers , those in possession of German citizenship remained German even after the end of the war, provided that it was based on birth or voluntary naturalization. In doing so, the Allies reinstated uniform German citizenship in place of the racially graded Nazi citizenship from 1935 onwards. The name of the law was retained in both states after the Federal Republic and the GDR were founded. The Allied High Commission declared the forced naturalization of former French or Luxembourg citizens to be null and void.

In some state constitutions created before the Basic Law came into force, state citizenships were still provided (e.g. in Articles 6 to 8 of the Bavarian Constitution , in Article 6, Paragraph 3 of the Württemberg-Hohenzollern constitution and in Article 53 of the Baden constitution) . After the formation of the state of Baden-Württemberg , the citizenship of Baden and Württemberg-Hohenzollern ceased to exist, while the Bavarian state citizenship remains unchanged to this day, but is in fact insignificant .

While the loss of the German eastern territories after the Second World War left the citizenship of the Germans resident there unaffected, the flight and expulsion of Germans from former settlement areas outside the German Reich made it necessary to redefine the concept of German citizens. According to § 1 RuStAG, someone who has been granted direct nationality is German. This would mean that the ethnic Germans would not have received German citizenship. A new legal definition was therefore made in Article 116 (1) of the Basic Law . “German within the meaning of the Basic Law” is also anyone who was admitted as a refugee or expellee or spouse or descendant of German ethnicity in Germany within the limits of December 31, 1937 . In addition to the German ethnicity, it was decisive that a new place of residence had been established within the former Reich territory. Austrians who resided in Germany on or after April 26, 1945 were able to declare acceptance of German citizenship to the citizenship authority between May 14, 1956 and June 30, 1957.

According to Article 116, Paragraph 2 of the Basic Law, German citizens whose citizenship was revoked between January 30, 1933 and May 8, 1945 for political, racial or religious reasons can be naturalized again upon their application. This applies to all persons who had lost their German citizenship as a result of an individual act on the basis of the law on the revocation of naturalizations and the withdrawal of German citizenship of July 14, 1933 or generally on the basis of the 11th ordinance of November 25, 1941 on the Reich Citizenship Act.

In contrast to the GDR since 1967, the Federal Republic of Germany always adhered to the uniform German citizenship (Reich citizenship), so that according to German law, GDR citizens were also German citizens. The adherence to the common nationality was also the actual reason that the Reich and Citizenship Act of 1913 was often changed, but retained in its basic features and a fundamental reform of the citizenship law was avoided in order to avoid the existing nationality brackets between the two German states within Germany as a whole not to be endangered.

In the GDR, the Reich and Citizenship Act continued to apply unchanged until 1967. The constitution of the GDR from 1949 also explicitly recognized only one German citizenship, the GDR identity papers and passports stated “Citizenship: German”. In 1967, the GDR led but then with the Law on Citizenship of the German Democratic Republic , a separate nationality , which all Germans included, who lived in the GDR was founded on their territory. With the reunification in 1990, nationality law in Germany became uniform again.

Up until the 1990s, only German nationals who immigrated to Germany (within the meaning of Article 116 of the Basic Law) were entitled to naturalization. The criteria were based on the inconsistent naturalization guidelines of the federal states (administrative regulations). The first legal regulations, which also made it possible for people of non-German origin to be naturalized, and which also laid down criteria of reasonableness in relation to giving up their previous citizenship, were found in the Aliens Act and were aimed at second and third generation migrant children.

Up until 2000, Germany was an international advocate of rules to avoid multiple citizenship and, when granting German citizenship by administrative act, still basically demands the abandonment of any other citizenship that could exist alongside German. In practice, however, the avoidance of multiple nationality has always been carried out selectively. While the automatically acquired multiple citizenship of children of binational parents (a German and another citizen, or one parent is himself a multiple citizen) was generally classified as unproblematic and not subject to any targeted legislative efforts, politics looked at the issue of German citizenship to migrants or theirs Descendants, possibly resulting multiple nationalities, mostly as a problem. In the course of the advancing European integration, the question of the extent to which the restrictive handling of dual citizenship with regard to citizens of other states of the European Union (EU) had to be relaxed due to Community law requirements arose.

Changes to citizenship law 2000 and the so-called "option model"

year Number of naturalizations Proportion of multiple citizenship
1994 61,709
1995 71,981
1996 86,356
1997 82,913
1998 106,790
1999 143.267
2000 186,688 44.9%
2001 178,098 48.3%
2002 154,547 41.5%
2003 140.731 40.7%
2004 127.153 43.5%
2005 117.241 47.2%
2006 124,566 51.0%
2007 113.030 52.4%
2008 94,470 52.9%
2009 96.121 53.7%
2010 101,570 53.1%
2011 106,897 50.4%
2012 112,348 50.0%
2013 112,353 49.7%
2014 108,422 52.1%
2015 107,317 54.2%
2016 110.383 57.8%

In 2000 the name of the Reich and Citizenship Act was changed to “Citizenship Act” (StAG). This change was part of a comprehensive reform of citizenship law, which among other things pursued the goal of facilitating naturalization while accepting multiple nationality. Sections of the population turned against this. In a signature campaign initiated by the CDU / CSU , five million citizens across the country spoke out against the project, according to the Union.

In the public debate, the Union parties and the FDP were accused of being less concerned with objective criticism than with trying to increase their political acceptance among voters with a xenophobic attitude. It was criticized that these parties spread in their campaign that the reform would trigger unbridled immigration, although it does not contain any rules on new entries. Conversely, the SPD and the Greens were accused of wanting to open up additional potential voters by facilitating naturalization (according to opinion polls, the vast majority of potential new citizens would be voters of these parties).

The topic dominated the election campaign for the state elections in Hesse in 1999 . Roland Koch's victory in this election cost the federal government a majority in the Bundesrat and resulted in the need for a compromise. In order to win a majority in the Federal Council, the federal government negotiated with the FDP . As a compromise, the general acceptance of dual citizenship was removed from the draft law and the option model was developed. This proposal was passed as a "group proposal" by the SPD, Bündnis 90 / Die Grünen and the FDP, against the votes of the opposition parties CDU and CSU, in the Bundestag on May 7, 1999 and, thanks to the support of the social-liberal coalition, found a majority in Rhineland-Palatinate in the Federal Council.

The result of the reform was a sharp increase in the number of naturalizations. However, this largely reflected the effects of the changeover. The immigration figures fell again after the introduction and are now at a level that is comparable to that before the change in nationality law.

Conjugal birth

Children born in wedlock who were born between January 1, 1914 and December 31, 1963 acquired German citizenship only through their German father. Children born in wedlock to a German mother who were born after January 1, 1964 and before December 31, 1974 acquired German citizenship if they would otherwise have become stateless. Children born in wedlock who were born on or after January 1, 1975 acquired citizenship through one of the parents.

Children born in wedlock to a German mother who were born on or after April 1, 1953 and before January 1, 1975 and who were already citizens, had the opportunity to acquire German citizenship by declaring. The reason for this regulation was the judgment of the Federal Constitutional Court of May 21, 1974, according to which it was incompatible with the equality of men and women ( Article 3, Paragraph 2 of the Basic Law) that the legitimate child of a German father and a foreign mother always be German Acquire citizenship, but the legitimate child of a German mother and a foreign father only if it would otherwise be stateless. The deadline for the declaration expired on December 31, 1977. After that, there was only the option of making the declaration if the person concerned was unable to meet the declaration deadline through no fault of his own. In these cases, the declaration could be submitted up to six months after the obstacle had ceased to exist. On August 1, 2006 this option also ceased to exist.

Birth out of wedlock

Children born out of wedlock to a German mother acquired German citizenship on January 1, 1914.

In contrast, illegitimate children of a foreign mother only acquired German citizenship from July 1, 1993, provided that a German man recognized paternity. Because of abusive paternity acknowledgments to obtain residence rights and social benefits, the authorities to be determined by the respective federal states had received a right to contest paternity with effect from June 1, 2008, so that in the event of a successful (official) contestation of paternity, the child's German citizenship could be lost again. However, the Federal Constitutional Court declared this regulation unconstitutional and null and void in a decision of December 17, 2013 .

A child born out of wedlock to a German father who was born before July 1, 1993 acquires German citizenship by means of a declaration if it has been lawfully habitual in the Federal Republic of Germany for three years and the declaration is made before the age of 23 if there is an acknowledgment of paternity.


Since January 1, 1977, German citizenship has also been acquired through adoption by a German parent. For children who were adopted by a German parent between January 1, 1959 and December 31, 1976, a declaration was acquired up to December 31, 1979. Since January 1, 1977, German citizenship has passed through the adoption of a minor German foreign parents lost. Germans who were adopted by foreign nationals before this date have generally not lost their German citizenship.


German citizenship could also be acquired from January 1, 1914 to June 30, 1998 through legitimation . The legitimation was the subsequent marriage of the German father of the illegitimate child to the foreign mother of the child. Legitimation could also be given by the child's declaration of marriage by a court. This regulation became largely obsolete on July 1, 1993 and has been inoperative since July 1, 1998.

Until March 31, 1953, the marriage of the foreign father and German mother led to the child's loss of German citizenship (Section 17 No. 5 RuStAG old version). Although it was formally repealed by simple federal law on January 1, 1975, the Federal Administrative Court made it clear in its judgment of November 29, 2006 that the statutory loss regulation had already expired on March 31, 1953 in accordance with Article 117 (1) of the Basic Law because she violated the principle of equal treatment for men and women ( Art. 3 Para. 2 GG). Since April 1, 1953, every child out of wedlock has therefore retained the German nationality acquired by the mother if the parents marry after the birth.


Foreign women who had married a German automatically acquired German citizenship from January 1, 1914 to March 31, 1953. Between April 1, 1953 and August 23, 1957, other special regulations applied. In the case of marriage between August 24, 1957 and December 31, 1969, there was the possibility of acquiring German citizenship by declaration at the time of the marriage or afterwards. Between January 1, 1970 and December 31, 1999, marriage was no longer an automatic reason for acquisition. Since then, spouses of German citizens could only be naturalized with ease.

German women who married a foreigner before May 23, 1949 lost their German citizenship even if they became stateless. You can be naturalized again. German women who married a foreigner between May 23, 1949 and March 31, 1953 only lost their German citizenship if it did not render them stateless. Since April 1, 1953, German citizenship has been retained when marrying a foreigner and is no longer an act of loss.

Elimination of the domestic clause

Until December 31, 1999, § 25 StAG a. F. a so-called domestic clause (also known as domestic privilege ), according to which a German resident in Germany does not lose German citizenship if he acquired another citizenship through naturalization. This regulation, which was already in the original version of the 1913 law, was based on the assumption that Germans who were naturalized by a foreign state, although they were in Germany, could not generally accept that they wanted to give up their citizenship . In order to deprive them of their German citizenship, additional circumstances were required that clearly indicated the participant's will not to want to continue to belong to his fatherland. At the same time, concerns were raised about the value of a foreign nationality that was granted without a long-term residence in the awarding state. According to the legal systems of many states, the naturalized person who remained in the country often acquired the new citizenship only with limited rights or with the reservation of being revoked within a probation period. The reason for leaving this group of people with German citizenship lay in the inconsistent turn to the granting state, the possibly non-permanent retention of foreign citizenship and the assumed continued close ties to Germany despite the assumption of foreign citizenship.

Over the recent past, however, this regulation was in many thousands of cases, especially of Turkish citizens who achieved citizenship in the German federation, used to by re-naturalization in the Turkish federation , a dual nationality to obtain. With the handing over of the certificate of the loss of Turkish citizenship, the Turkish consulate presented them with a re-naturalization application with the note that after handing over the German naturalization certificate they could be re-naturalized without losing their acquired German citizenship. The re-naturalization application was granted in practically all cases.

The legislature reacted to this undesirable development by abolishing the domestic privilege with effect from January 1, 2000. The official justification for the law says only briefly: “This 'domestic clause' is often used to undermine the principle of avoiding multiple citizenship during naturalization: The foreign nationality that was given up before naturalization is regained without sanction after naturalization. The abolition of the 'domestic clause' eliminates this possibility of abuse. ”Despite a reference by German authorities to the changed legal situation, the Turkish diplomatic missions stuck to their procedure of offering former Turkish nationals re-naturalization without having to lose their German citizenship, which began on January 1, 2000 to enlighten. This practice was only ended in 2005. An estimated 48,000 Turks across Germany had been affected by this by then. According to the Residence Act , in order to be able to stay in Germany, these persons must apply for a residence permit within six months of becoming aware that they have lost their German citizenship due to Turkish re-naturalization ( Section 38 of the Residence Act). If you fail to meet the deadline, your stay is only tolerated until the decision on the application has been made.

If underage children are re-naturalized on the basis of their parents' application, they do not lose their German citizenship because the behavior of their parents is not attributed to them; they thus become dual states.

The Federal Constitutional Court considered the elimination of the domestic privilege to be constitutional. The elimination is also constitutional insofar as the naturalized person applied for re-naturalization into the Turkish state association before January 1, 2000, but the re-naturalization was only granted after this point in time. Because in the naturalization procedure the person concerned was required to give up his Turkish citizenship. So he had to be aware that by immediately reapplying for Turkish citizenship he had chosen a detour to dual citizenship, which the legislature had just wanted to deny him with the applicable naturalization law provisions, and that he had therefore prepared to take advantage of a loophole in the law . He was free to do so; but he could not count on the legislature taking no steps to thwart this intention.

Legal regulation of the admissibility of other nationalities

In the narrower sense of the term, “multiple citizenship” does not mean the possible case in the federal state structure that someone is a citizen of a regional authority at different levels of statehood . For example, a German citizen can also have Bavarian citizenship .

. The old rule according to § 87 para 2 of the German Aliens Act made dual citizenship possible if the other EU - Member State also einbürgert German nationals at the request without requiring the task of German nationality (reciprocity). This is e.g. This is unreservedly the case with Hungary , the Republic of Poland and the Slovak Republic .

Children with one German and one foreign parent or one or both parents with dual nationality are often given the nationalities of both parents at birth according to the principle of descent.

With the law on the reform of citizenship law of July 15, 1999, the federal legislature in Section 87 (2) of the Aliens Act (expired on December 31, 2004) with regard to the goal of advancing European integration, stipulated that EU citizens are not required will be that they give up their previous citizenship before naturalization in Germany if the other EU member state does the same in return for naturalization of Germans; it was therefore no longer necessary to match the other requirements and consequences of naturalization. This is the case with Greece , for example , since there not only naturalization law but also naturalization practice meet the requirement of reciprocity; in the Republic of Slovenia and the Netherlands this only applied to certain groups of people.

According to the current regulation, in accordance with Section 12 (2) of the Nationality Act, citizens of another EU member state and Switzerland are generally not required to give up or lose their citizenship. For citizens of some EU states, however, it expires when they become naturalized in Germany due to their home law .

In addition, there were and are German citizens who have another citizenship, but of which the German authorities have no knowledge. These persons are not officially considered to be people with multiple nationalities and are not recorded as such by any official statistics.

Complications related to multiple citizenship

Multiple citizenship can generally lead to political and legal conflicts:

  • Multiple right to vote : People with multiple nationalities have - with restrictions  - the right to vote in all states of which they are nationals. This can be understood as a violation of the principle of equality of choice in elections in which they could be treated like two people. For example, in elections to the European Parliament, multiple citizenship can mean that someone in two different countries cast one vote each. According to the electoral law for the European Parliament, however, this is expressly inadmissible.
  • Split loyalty : A prerequisite for the functioning of a democracy is a minimum level of togetherness. This is endangered with multiple citizenship. From a legal point of view, however, this argument is only of significance in the currently theoretical case that someone as a German has duties that the law of the other country of which he is a citizen forbids him to perform. This case only presents a problem if the behavior that is legally required for the person concerned in Germany leads to sanctions on the part of the state concerned when they return to their other home country.
  • International private law : This is linked to the nationality or the place of habitual residence in order to determine the applicable national law (see also conflict of law rules ). Multiple citizenship means that unambiguity is lost, which means that it must be clarified which law is to apply as the right of home to which the dual citizen is subject.
  • Conscription : People with multiple nationalities can be used for military service in several countries. In the event of war in the two home states, they could even be obliged to do military service on both sides.
  • Diplomatic protection : The multi-national could assert his right to consular assistance from one home country against the other.
  • Minority protection : A numerically significant group of multi-nationals could claim minority protection rights in their country of residence. However, z. For example, in the case of ethnic Danes with German citizenship, this protection is also granted to people who are not also citizens of Denmark .

Due to the different citizenship regulations of the individual states, multiple citizenship is inevitable. The states have therefore made arrangements in many areas to resolve these conflicts. In Turkey, for example, there is a legal regulation that, under certain circumstances, Turkish military service for German-Turkish multi-nationals is considered to be compensated with German military service or alternate service : The conscript must therefore be born in Germany or have entered Germany as a minor, and usually reside there and have acquired German citizenship before the age of 38. Croatia also recognizes German military service instead of Croatian conscription. Official handling and thus overlapping of military service are not completely excluded in individual cases.

In the international community there is no uniform legal principle to avoid multiple citizenship; There are no general rules for this under international law. Rather, the majority of national legislation shows that states primarily regulate their own relationship with their citizens, while multiple nationalities are accepted quite liberally.

The Strasbourg Convention on the Reduction of Multiple Nationality and on the Conscription of Multiple Nationalities (MStaatÜbk) of 6 May 1963 contained a clear mandate to reduce multiple nationality. This convention was superseded by the European Convention on Citizenship of November 6, 1997 and therefore denounced by Germany with effect from June 29, 2002. The new convention no longer obliges states to reduce multiple citizenship, but allows states to give up their previous citizenship as a prerequisite for acquiring their own, insofar as this is reasonable.

See also


Commentary literature

  • Fritz von Keller, Paul Trautmann: Commentary on the Reich and Citizenship Act of July 22, 1913. Beck, Munich 1914; DNB 361043430 .


  • Federal Government Commissioner for Migration, Refugees and Integration (Ed.): How do I become a German? - Brochure on naturalization law. 3rd edition, Berlin 2005 ( PDF ; 0.5 MB).
  • Federal Government Commissioner for Migration, Refugees and Integration (Ed.): Report on the situation of foreigners in Germany. Berlin 2005. Chapter C II (Citizenship Law) contains explanations and comments on current problems with the application of the Citizenship Act ( PDF ( Memento of July 2, 2006 in the Internet Archive ); 2 MB).
  • Jürgen Blechinger, Carola Bülow (ed.): The new citizenship law. Practical manual for the legally secure implementation of current regulations. Loose-leaf collection, Forum Verlag, 2000. (updated repeatedly since then)
  • Dieter Gosewinkel : Naturalization and exclusion. The nationalization of citizenship from the German Confederation to the Federal Republic of Germany (=  Critical Studies in History , Vol. 150). 2nd edition, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen 2003, ISBN 978-3-647-3516-50 .
  • Kay Hailbronner , Günter Renner, Hans-Georg Maaßen: Citizenship Law, Commentary. 5th edition, Beck, Munich 2010, ISBN 978-3-406-59548-6 .
  • Rainer M. Hofmann, Holger Hoffmann (Eds.): Aliens Law - AufenthG, FreizügG / EU, AsylVfG, StAG. Hand comment. Nomos, Baden-Baden 2008, ISBN 978-3-8329-1171-3 .
  • AN Makarov: On the treatment of German naturalizations 1938 to 1945. JZ 1952, p. 403 ff.
  • Ingo von Münch : The German citizenship. Past present Future. De Gruyter, Berlin 2007, ISBN 978-3-89949-433-4 . ( Google Books )
  • Rainer Hofmann : Citizenship in divided Germany. The Teso decision of the Federal Constitutional Court. HJIL / ZaöRV , Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law, Heidelberg 1989 ( PDF ; 3.4 MB).
  • Walter Fr. Schleser : The German citizenship. A guide. With 2 contributions by Alfred Heinzel. 4th, revised. u. Additional edition, Verlag für Standesamtwesen, Frankfurt am Main 1980, ISBN 3-8019-5603-2 (with a map booklet about the former German settlement areas in Eastern Europe and information about the former German resident population there).
  • Oliver Trevisiol: The naturalization practice in the German Empire 1871-1945. V&R unipress, Göttingen 2006, ISBN 3-89971-303-6 .
  • Dominik Nagl: Borderline cases. Citizenship, racism and national identity under German colonial rule. Peter Lang Verlag, Frankfurt am Main 2007, ISBN 978-3-631-56458-5 .
  • Preliminary application information from the Federal Ministry of the Interior of June 1, 2015 on the Nationality Act (StAG) in the version of the Second Act to amend the Nationality Act of November 13, 2014 (Federal Law Gazette I p. 1714) - VAH-StAG - (PDF; 391 kB) , accessed November 10, 2016.

Web links

Legal texts


  1. Proof (citizenship certificates) ( Memento from April 19, 2014 in the Internet Archive )
  2. Citizenship Act (StAG), Ordinance on the Responsibility of the Nationality Authorities , General Administrative Regulations on Documents in Citizenship Matters (StAUrkVwV), but also § 8 .
  3. Citizenship Act (StAG), Ordinance on the Responsibility of the Citizenship Authorities , General Administrative Regulations on Documents in Citizenship Matters (StAUrkVwV).
  4. § 40a and § 7 StAG in the version of the law on the reform of the nationality law of July 15, 1999 ( Federal Law Gazette I p. 1618 ).
  5. See the Reich Citizenship Law of 1935 (RGBl. I p. 1146).
  6. RGBl. P. 583; online at , accessed on July 19, 2020.
  7. Vito F. Gironda: Left Liberalism and National Citizenship in the Empire: A German Path to a Citizenship? In: Jörg Echternkamp and Oliver Müller: (Ed.): The politics of the nation. German nationalism in war and crises 1760 to 1960 . Oldenbourg, Munich 2002, ISBN 3-486-56652-0 , pp. 175-130, here p. 109 f. (accessed via De Gruyter Online).
  8. BGBl. I p. 1354 .
  9. Federal Law Gazette I p. 1950 .
  10. See Hans von Mangoldt , Das deutsche Staatsvolk nach der Reunification. Consequences under nationality law of the regaining of the unity of Germany and the final settlement with regard to Germany. In: Festschrift for Martin Heckel on his seventieth birthday , ed. by Karl-Hermann Kästner, Knut Wolfgang Nörr, Klaus Schlaich. Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen 1999, ISBN 3-16-147158-X , pp. 799-820, here pp. 800, 811 f .; see in particular the so-called Teso decision of the BVerfG that, because of the normatively concretized requirement to preserve the unity of German citizenship ( Art. 116 para. 1, Art. 16 para. 1 GG) through the reunification requirement "the acquisition of citizenship of the German Democratic Republic for the legal order of the Federal Republic of Germany within the limits of public policy, the legal effect of acquiring German citizenship is to be attributed ”( BVerfGE 77, 137 , principle 1).
  11. Abolition of existing exceptional provisions by Art. 2 and 3 of the Act on the Further Adjustment of Federal Law .
  12. Art. 3 of the law of April 8, 2019 ( Federal Law Gazette I pp. 418, 428 ).
  13. Cf. Hasnain Kazim, German parents fight for their twins in India , Spiegel Online , March 4, 2010; see. § 1591 BGB : "The mother of a child is the woman who gave birth to it."
  14. See § 6 StAngRegG v. February 22, 1955, Federal Law Gazette I p. 65 .
  15. Federal Association of Independent Welfare Care : Dealing with the Obligation to Make Options , October 2009, p. 4 (PDF; 697 kB).
  16. a b c Answer of the Federal Government to a request from the Greens, BT-Drs. 17/12321 of February 12, 2013 (PDF; 68 kB), accessed on March 17, 2013.
  17. Two passes for one life. In: Sü . May 17, 2010, accessed March 9, 2018 .
  18. Second law amending the Nationality Act of November 13, 2014 ( Federal Law Gazette I p. 1714 ).
  19. Official justification, BT-Drs. 18/1312 , p. 8, (PDF; 197 kB), accessed on February 4, 2014.
  20. Official justification, BT-Drs. 18/1312 , p. 9, (PDF; 197 kB), accessed on February 4, 2014.
  21. Law for the implementation of residence and asylum directives of the European Union of August 19, 2007 ( Federal Law Gazette I, p. 1970 )
  22. Günter Renner / Hans-Georg Maaßen: Citizenship Law , 5th edition 2010, § 3 Rn. 6; Fritz Sturm: The hidden amendment to the Citizenship Act , StAZ 2008, 132.
  23. Implementing Act of the Convention of August 30, 1961 on the Reduction of Statelessness and the Convention of September 13, 1973 on the Reduction of Statelessness (Statelessness Act) of June 29, 1977 ( Federal Law Gazette I p. 1101 ), which has been amended by Art. 3 § 4 of the law of July 15, 1999 ( Federal Law Gazette I p. 1618 ).
  24. BGBl. 1953 II p. 559, 560
  25. Easier naturalization for descendants of victims of Nazi persecution. In: press release. Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Home Affairs, August 30, 2019, accessed on December 20, 2019 .
  26. ^ Julia Kitzmann: Descendants of victims of Nazi persecution: soon naturalized again. In: . August 29, 2019, accessed December 20, 2019 .
  27. ^ Ayala Goldmann: Nazi persecuted. By decree on the passport: How the Federal Government wants to facilitate the naturalization of descendants. In: Jüdische Allgemeine . September 5, 2019, accessed December 20, 2019 .
  28. ^ Christoph Schult: Bundestag on reintroduction: descendants of Nazi victims remain petitioners. In: Spiegel Online. January 30, 2020, accessed February 2, 2020 .
  29. According to information from Destatis .
  30. Federal Statistical Office: Population and Employment - Naturalizations , Fachserie 1 Reihe 2.1, 2015 (PDF, 160 pages) , Wiesbaden 2016.
  31. Destatis: Naturalizations decreased slightly in 2014 , press release No. 237 of June 29, 2015.
  32. Germany wants to make naturalization easier for the British. In: FAZ . September 5, 2018, accessed December 29, 2018 .
  33. BVerwG, judgment of December 12, 1995, Az. 9 C 113.95, guiding principle = BVerwGE 100, 139, 145.
  34. German Embassy Tel Aviv: German Citizenship , August 2007.
  35. ^ Decision of the Federal Constitutional Court of December 8, 2006
  36. Anke Schwarzer: Anger about citizenship: Jews are more likely to be Israelis , Jungle World 21 from May 25, 2005.
  37. Israel / Germany: Dual citizenship no longer certain ( Memento from September 13, 2014 in the Internet Archive ), May 2005.
  38. Announcement of the Federal Ministry of Defense on the consent to voluntary military service outside the Bundeswehr ( memento of August 10, 2014 in the Internet Archive ) of June 21, 2011, BAnz, 2011, p. 2379 (PDF; 82 kB).
  39. ^ German Embassy in Bogota: Important information for German citizens ( Memento from November 25, 2011 in the Internet Archive )
  40. BVerfG, judgment of May 24, 2006 - 2 BvR 669/04, at that time still on § 48 VwVfG.
  41. Cf. Eugen Ehmann, Heinz Stark (ed.): German citizenship law. Collection of rules with an explanatory introduction. 8th, revised edition (1st edition 1979), Jehle, Heidelberg / Munich / Landsberg [u. a.] 2010, ISBN 978-3-7825-0502-4 , p. 467 f.
  42. Links to the full text
  43. beck-online: Links to the full text
  44. ^ In the Revolutionary Constitution of September 3, 1791, provisions on nationality were included for the first time and were later incorporated into the Civil Code .
  45. ^ Constitution of the Kingdom of Bavaria from 1818 , § 1 (Title IV).
  46. Section 19 (Chapter III) of the Constitution of September 25, 1819.
  47. Art. 13 (Title III) of the Constitution of December 17, 1820.
  48. § 57 Paulskirche constitution.
  49. ^ Law on the acquisition and loss of federal and national citizenship of the North German Confederation of June 1, 1870 . The law came into force on January 1, 1871. It remained in effect until December 31, 1913; see. Reich and Citizenship Act of July 22, 1913.
  50. Cf. Reichs-Gesetzblatt 1913, pp. 583–593 : § 1. A German is anyone who has citizenship in a federal state (...) or direct Reich citizenship (...).
  51. ^ Protected area membership - Deutsches Kolonial-Lexikon (1920), Volume III, p. 312 f., Straehler.
  52. Dieter Gosewinkel, Naturalization and Exclusion. The nationalization of citizenship from the German Confederation to the Federal Republic of Germany , Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht, Göttingen 2001, ISBN 3-525-35165-8 , p. 303 .
  53. ^ Protected Areas Act - German Colonial Lexicon (1920), Volume III, p. 317 f., Straehler.
  54. ^ Katharina Oguntoye: African immigration to Germany between 1884 and 1945 .
  55. Joachim Neander: The citizenship law of the “Third Reich” and its effects on the fate of persecution of German citizens , theologie.geschichte Volume 3, 2008.
  56. ^ Ordinance on German citizenship of February 5, 1934 (RGBl. 1934 I p. 85) for the elimination of citizenship in the German states on the grounds of exclusive German citizenship (Reich citizenship).
  57. RGBl. I p. 75.
  58. ↑ For more details, Ingo von Münch : The German citizenship. Past - present - future . De Gruyter Recht, 2007, p. 73 f.
  59. ^ Ordinance on German citizenship in Austria of July 3, 1938
  60. Austrian Citizenship Transition Act (St-ÜG) of July 10, 1945, StGBl. No. 59/1945
  61. ^ Ingo von Münch: The German citizenship. De Gruyter, Berlin 2007, p. 112 .
  62. Cf. on this Ingo von Münch: The German Citizenship. De Gruyter, Berlin 2007, p. 110 .
  63. From the information sheet on issuing a citizenship card
  64. Eligible naturalization ( memento of October 25, 2017 in the Internet Archive ), website of the Federal Office of Administration , accessed on October 25, 2017.
  65. RGBl. I p. 480.
  66. Interpretation and application of Article 116, Paragraph 2 of the Basic Law , RdErl. Of the North Rhine-Westphalian Ministry of the Interior of August 4, 1959 - IB 3/13 - 17, as of October 6, 2017.
  67. ^ Law on Citizenship of the German Democratic Republic of February 20, 1967
  68. Federal Office for Migration and Refugees: Migration, Asylum and Integration  ( page no longer available , search in web archives ), 14th edition, p. 87 (information up to 2004).@1@ 2Template: Toter Link /
  69. Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (Susanne Worbs): The naturalization of foreigners in Germany , p. 26 (figures 2000-2004).
  70. a b Federal Statistical Office: Naturalizations - Fachserie 1 Reihe 2.1 - 2008 , p. 90 ( online ).
  71. a b Federal Statistical Office: Naturalizations - Fachserie 1 Reihe 2.1 - 2009 , p. 90 ( online ).
  72. a b Federal Statistical Office: Naturalizations - Fachserie 1 Reihe 2.1 - 2010 , p. 89 ( online ).
  73. a b Federal Statistical Office: Naturalizations - Fachserie 1 Reihe 2.1 - 2011 , p. 147 ( online ).
  74. a b Federal Statistical Office: Naturalizations - Fachserie 1 Reihe 2.1 - 2012 , p. 137 ( online ).
  75. a b Federal Statistical Office: Naturalizations - Fachserie 1 Reihe 2.1 - 2013 , p. 144 ( online ).
  76. a b Federal Statistical Office: Naturalizations - Fachserie 1 Reihe 2.1 - 2014 , p. 150 ( online ).
  77. a b Federal Statistical Office: Naturalizations - Fachserie 1 Reihe 2.1 - 2015 , p. 150 ( online ).
  78. a b Federal Statistical Office: Naturalizations - Fachserie 1 Reihe 2.1 - 2016 , p. 145 ( online ).
  79. BVerfG, judgment of May 21, 1974, Az. 1 BvL 22/71, 1 BvL 21/72.
  80. Art. 3 of the law amending the Reich and Citizenship Act (RuStAÄndG 1974) of December 20, 1974 (Federal Law Gazette I p. 3714).
  81. repeal of RuStAÄndG 1974 by Art. 2 i. V. m. 100 of the First Act on the Adjustment of Federal Law in the area of ​​responsibility of the Federal Ministry of the Interior of February 19, 2006 (Federal Law Gazette I 2006, p. 334).
  82. Cf. only the example of the German Jürgen Hass , who lives in Paraguay , who wanted to take revenge on the German state with over 300 paternity recognitions because of what he considered to be an unjust prison sentence. Loophole in the law: German wants to be the father of 1,000 children , Spiegel Online, advance notification of May 6, 2006. Accessed October 11, 2010.
  83. § 1600 BGB i. d. F. of the law of March 13, 2008 (Federal Law Gazette I p. 313).
  84. BVerfG, 1 BvL 6/10 of December 17, 2013
  85. BVerwG, judgment of November 29, 2006 - 5 C 5.05 - .
  86. Von Keller / Trautmann, Commentary on the Reich and Citizenship Act , 1914, Section 25 RuStAG, p. 288.
  87. Woeber / Fitscher, Reich and Citizenship Act of July 22, 1913 with the Bavarian implementation regulations , Munich / Berlin / Leipzig 1932, § 25 Note 1.
  88. Schätzel, The German Citizenship Law , Berlin 1958, § 25 Note 2 (p. 215).
  89. ^ VG Darmstadt, judgment of November 3, 2006 , Az. 5 E 1807/05 (3), press release. The decision sheds light on the historical background of the domestic privilege.
  90. Law on the Reform of Nationality Law of July 15, 1999 (Federal Law Gazette I p. 1618).
  91. BT-Drs. 14/533 , p. 15 (PDF; 239 kB).
  92. 48,000 people of Turkish origin with two passports , FAZ from February 8, 2005.
  93. See answer by Hess. Ministry of the Interior on a small request from September 2, 2005, LT-Drs. 16/4218 (PDF; 86 kB).
  94. Press release of the BVerfG of January 10, 2007 on the constitutionality of the abolition of the domestic clause.
  95. White-blue on the special route. Dual citizenship? It goes without saying for Bayern , in: Die Zeit No. 13/1999.
  96. EU-Info. Germany: Double citizenship possible for EU foreigners
  97. ^ "Zeit" - editor-in-chief elects twice: AfD reports against di Lorenzo. In: . May 25, 2014, accessed October 13, 2018 .
  98. See Josef Isensee , Farewell to Democracy from the Demos. The right to vote for foreigners as a question of identity for the people, democracy and the constitution , in: Dieter Schwab / Dieter Giesen / Joseph Listl / Hans-Wolfgang Strätz (eds.), State, Church, Science in a Pluralistic Society - Festschrift for the 65th birthday of Paul Mikat , Berlin 1989, fn 19, where the 'danger' of double loyalty is dealt with and, in a certain case, cited as a central argument against local voting rights for foreigners in Germany. Cf. also Joseph HH Weiler , Der Staat “über alles”. Demos, Telos and the Maastricht decision of the Federal Constitutional Court , JöR 44 (1996), p. 91 ff., Here p. 133 ff.
  99. Nina Isabel Goes, Mehrstaatigkeit in Deutschland , 1997, ISBN 3-7890-4724-4 , pp. 83–86.
  100. Tido Oliver Hokema, Multiple Citizenship , 2002, ISBN 3-631-39149-8 , pp. 236-272.
  101. Tido Oliver Hokema, Multiple Citizenship , 2002, pp. 275–303.
  102. Tido Oliver Hokema, Multiple Citizenship , 2002, pp. 303–336.
  103. Federal Government Commissioner for the Issues of Foreigners (Ed.), Dual Citizenship and Conscription , 1996.