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Declare renunciation of German citizenship - for persons abroad
Source: Zuständigkeitsfinder Schleswig-Holstein (Linie6PLus)
The Federal Office of Administration (BVA) is a German higher federal authority in the portfolio of the Federal Ministry of the Interior, for Construction and Home Affairs (BMI). Among other things, it is responsible as the citizenship authority for persons abroad for issues relating to citizenship.
If you live abroad, have several citizenships and wish to renounce your German citizenship, you can submit a declaration to renounce your German citizenship. If the renunciation can be approved, you will be issued with a renunciation certificate.
Approval will not be granted if you belong to the following occupational groups, among others:
- active civil servants,
unless you have lived abroad permanently for at least 10 years.
If you are a minor, you can only renounce your German citizenship with the approval of the German family court (at the local court) responsible for you. The approval of the family court is not required if the parents with custody or the parent with sole custody declare or declare the renunciation for themselves and at the same time for the minor child.
You can also appoint an authorised person, for example a lawyer, to make your declaration. You must submit a power of attorney for this purpose.
You can obtain further information by telephone, e-mail or in a personal conversation from the German mission abroad responsible for you or from the Federal Office of Administration (BVA).
The renunciation of German citizenship is to be distinguished from the renunciation. A renunciation comes into consideration if you wish to acquire a foreign nationality and have to give up your German nationality beforehand.
You can declare your renunciation of German citizenship in writing at the competent German representation abroad, online or in writing directly at the Federal Office of Administration (BVA).
You or your authorized person can declare the renunciation of German citizenship in writing at the responsible German mission abroad, directly in writing or online at the Federal Office of Administration (BVA).
- You can obtain the form locally from your local German mission abroad or download it online from the BVA's website.
- If you live in Germany, please contact your local city or district administration. There you will receive the application forms that are suitable for you.
- If you wish, the local mission abroad will assist you in filling out the form.
- Complete the form in full and sign it.
- Submit the signed declaration by post or in person to your local German mission abroad together with the required supporting documents.
- However, contacting the German mission abroad is not obligatory. You can also send the declaration directly to the BVA by post.
- The BVA will check your declaration and inform you if further documents and information are required for the processing of the declaration.
- Go to the website of the Federal Portal and fill out the application form for renunciation of German citizenship electronically. Note: For the online function you need your identity card with PIN number.
- Attach the other required documents as a file.
- Send your application.
- The BVA will check your application and, if necessary, request certified copies of the required documents.
Complete the procedure (in writing and online):
- If your application is approved, the BVA will send your waiver certificate to your responsible German mission abroad. They will inform you about the further procedure for handing over the certificate.
- With the delivery of the renunciation certificate you will lose your German citizenship. Your German identity documents will thus become invalid. They will be confiscated by the foreign representation.
- If the BVA rejects your application, you will receive a rejection notice.
Who should I contact?
Declarations of renunciation of German nationality may be made by:
- Germans with habitual residence abroad who hold several nationalities.
- Approval of the German family court (at the local court) if the custodial parents or the parent with sole custody do not simultaneously declare or declare the _renunciation for themselves.
If you are subject to compulsory military service in Germany, you need the approval of the Bundeswehr Personnel Management Office. This is obtained from the Federal Office of Administration (BVA).
Which documents are required?
For the waiver you must submit:
possible proof of possession of German nationality:
- German identity card
- German passport
- (last) nationality card.
possible evidence of possession of the other nationality and permanent residence:
- foreign identity card
- foreign passport
- (foreign) citizenship identity card
- foreign registration certificate
in the case of minors:
- permission of the German family court
Please attach the documents and proofs as officially or notarially certified copies, unless otherwise stated. For the online application you will first need simple electronic copies. The Federal Office of Administration (BVA) will request any necessary documents and proofs as certified copies in the online procedure only after the application has been submitted.
What are the fees?
Please keep in mind that you may incur additional costs for obtaining certificates, translations and notarizations.
What deadlines do I have to pay attention to?
- for processing the application: usually 2 to 3 months
Applications / forms
- Forms: yes
- Online procedure possible: yes
- Written form required: yes
- Personal appearance required: yes (for delivery of the waiver certificate)
Technically approved by
Federal Ministry of the Interior, for Construction and Home Affairs (BMI)