Being a citizen of two countries simultaneously means dual citizenship. Today, over 100 countries worldwide provide dual citizenship. Being a citizen of two different countries can be alluring, but it may carry its drawbacks as well.
In this guide, you’ll be provided with all information about second citizenship, and the process to get one.
Benefits of Getting Dual Nationality
Benefits range from the right to work to obtaining healthcare services. Let’s review them one by one.
- You don’t need a work visa to work in your country of dual citizenship. Your status already provides you with this right
- Your children, parents, and siblings can get citizenship in a second country with your help
- You don’t have to apply for a renewed visa for re-entry to the country
- Having two passports is another good side of dual nationality: you can use your status to seek refuge, for instance. In this way, you can easily relocate to your second country of citizenship for safety purposes
- You’ll have access to a larger range of services such as healthcare and education. In this way, your children can study at an educational institution in another country. Similarly, you can have access to healthcare facilities in your second country. In this way, you may have access to better healthcare services.
Are There Any Drawbacks?
In short, yes, there can be. However, if you check all the regulations and rules carefully, you can have peace of mind.
The following are some of the issues that you’d better take into consideration.
- Taxes: When you’re a citizen of two countries, you need to pay taxes on your net income in both countries. However, there are certain countries that have signed double taxation treaties with each other so that you don’t pay double taxes.
- You may have to do military service if you’re at the age of 18-26. Or, some countries may ask you to serve as a jury member.
- If your dual citizenship doesn’t come by birth, getting one may take years. If you choose to become a citizen by naturalization, then you need to live in the country for around 3-5 years.
How Can You Get Second Citizenship?
Multiple citizenship is available in certain ways such as birth, naturalization, marriage, and investment. The critical point here is whether your native country allows dual citizenship, too.
Let’s review the details of each option.
Second Citizenship by Birth
This is a very easy way to get a second citizenship. You don’t have to deal with the paperwork and so on. You can easily get the citizenship of the country you’re born in, even if your parents are from some other country. However, it’s still better to check the related countries’ regulations about this.
Dual Nationality by Naturalization
You can become naturalized in a country after working or studying there for a certain period of time. The naturalization process changes from country to country. For instance, the UK requires five years of residency to be naturalized in the country. Canada, on the other hand, requires residency of two years out of every five years.
Dual Citizenship by Marriage
You can become a dual citizen after you marry a person from another country different from your native country. You may, however, need to live in that country for a while before being able to apply for citizenship.
Second Citizenship by Investment
Investment can be an easier and definitely a faster way to get a second citizenship. There are dual citizenship countries that provide this right at a specific amount of investment in the country. In return for this, you’ll get a second passport and citizenship. The investment amounts change from $100,000 to $2,5 million.
Some of these schedules are known as Golden Visa programs and citizenship by investment programs. For instance, Turkey and Malta offer citizenship by investment upon a qualified investment. While Turkey provides citizenship within a few months, Maltese citizenship may take either 12 or 36 months.
Golden Visa programs are residency by investment programs. Some of them may offer citizenship later, after completing the necessary requirements like naturalization. Portugal and Greece are among the countries that offer Golden Visa programs.
So, if obtaining dual citizenship is among your plans, you can choose one of the steps above and start your journey immediately!