Die Ziele und Ausrichtung dieser Seite ändern sich ab sofort.

Wir haben uns entschieden, die Ziele und Ausrichtung dieser Seite radikal zu ändern. In der Zeit, wo wir täglich mit der Problematik und Geschichten der Flüchtlinge konfrontiert werden, hat es keinen Sinn über Studienplätze, Greencard und solche Sachen zu reden.

Wir haben eine regelrechte Völkerwanderung!!!

Wir müssen uns damit beschäftigen.

 

All about a green Card!

green card is issued to all permanent residents as proof that they are authorized to live and work in the United States. If you are a permanent resident age 18 or older, you are required to have a valid green card in your possession at all times. Current green cards are valid for 10 years, or 2 years in the case of a conditional resident, and must be renewed before the card expires.


 

A green card can be used to prove employment eligibility in the United States when completing the Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification. It can also be used to apply for a Social Security Card and a state issued driver’s license. A green card is valid for readmission to the United States after a trip abroad if you do not leave for longer than 1 year. If your trip will last longer than 1 year, a reentry permit is needed.

You have certain rights and responsibilities as a permanent resident. This section will give you a general idea of what these are and provide you with some other useful information related to your immigration status.

You may also wish to read Welcome to the United States: A Guide for New Immigrants, a guide (in English and 10 other languages) containing practical information to help immigrants settle into everyday life in the United States, as well as basic civics information that introduces new immigrants to the U.S. system of government.

You also may have a look to following links:

Studying in Canada

More than 90,000 students come to study in Canada every year and even more come to Canada to learn English or French. Foreign students bring a rich culture to our classrooms. Your knowledge and skills are welcome in our schools.

In Canada, the provinces and territories have jurisdiction over education. For more detailed information on living and studying in a specific province or territory, contact the school where you wish to study.

Notice: Don’t be a victim of fraud — Find out more.

Learn about:

Are you a temporary worker or graduate with Canadian work experience?
Learn more about the Canadian Experience Class!

New citizenship rules

A new law amending the Citizenship Act came into effect on April 17, 2009. The new law gives Canadian citizenship to certain people who lost it and to others who are recognized as citizens for the first time. It also protects the value of citizenship by limiting citizenship by descent to one generation outside Canada.

 

Find out more about the new law.

Frequently asked questions

Applying for citizenship


Canadians are proud to hold one of the most prized citizenships in the world.

Every year about 170,000 people become new citizens of Canada.

If you want to become a Canadian citizen, you must:

  1. Determine if you are eligible to become a citizen.
  2. Apply for citizenship.
  3. Verify the status of your application and prepare for the citizenship test.
    Use the citizenship study guide entitled Discover Canada: The Rights and Responsibilities of Citizenship to prepare for your test
  4. Take the citizenship test, if you are between the ages of 18 and 54.
  5. Attend a citizenship ceremony, if you are 14 or older.


Loss of German citizenship


Can I automatically lose my German citizenship?

Section 25 of the Nationality Act

Yes. Any German citizen who applies for and acquires foreign citizenship, whether in Germany or abroad, automatically loses his or her German citizenship. This occurs automatically by law; you do not have to make a special declaration or notify the German authorities. And it makes no difference how you acquired German citizenship. To avoid losing your German citizenship in this way, you must apply for and be granted permission to retain your German citizenship before acquiring foreign citizenship. When issuing passports, registering births, processing the subsequent immigration of family members, etc., the authorities make sure the persons in question are still German citizens. Possessing a German passport or identity card does not in itself constitute proof of citizenship. In case of doubt, a test to determine nationality can be carried out.

Can I give up my German citizenship?

Sections 18 to 24 of the Nationality Act

German nationality law allows its citizens to give up their citizenship, as long as they can show that they have applied for citizenship from another country whose responsible authorities have provided assurance that acquiring such citizenship is possible.

The loss of citizenship is effective when the person in question is issued a document to this effect, as long as he or she can demonstrate that he or she has acquired another citizenship within a year of the document being issued.  

Persons employed in the public service and still in an official relationship with public law functions, other than persons acting in a voluntary capacity, may not be released from their German citizenship. Persons subject to compulsory military service must receive approval from the Federal Ministry of Defence.

Can I renounce my German citizenship?

Section 26 of the Nationality Act

Anyone with multiple citizenship may renounce his or her German citizenship. Doing so requires official permission and goes into effect when a document to this effect is issued.

What does the obligation to choose citizenship mean?

Section 29 of the Nationality Act

Anyone with multiple nationality who has acquired German citizenship according to the principle of birthplace (Section 4 para. 3 of the Nationality Act) or by naturalization in accordance with Section 40 b of the Nationality Act* must choose between his/her German and foreign citizenship upon reaching the age of majority and before his/her 23rd birthday.

* Under a special time-limited entitlement to naturalization, this also applies to children who were not yet ten years old on 31 December 2000.

By choosing the other citizenship, he or she loses German citizenship. The same is true if he/she fails to declare a choice before his/her 23rd birthday.

Those wishing to retain their German citizenship must declare this in advance of their 23rd birthday. They must also officially renounce their foreign citizenship before their 23rd birthday, otherwise they will automatically lose their German citizenship.

If it is clear that it is not possible to give up the foreign citizenship, or to do so before the deadline, or that doing so would cause unreasonable hardship, then the person in question may apply for dual nationality before his/her 21st birthday. Persons eligible to apply for naturalization may also apply for dual nationality if it might be justified in their case.

What about German children who are adopted by foreigners?

Section 27 of the Nationality Act

German children who are adopted by a foreign parent and acquire the parent’s citizenship lose their German citizenship. This does not apply if they maintain a legal relation to their German parent.

What about serving in the armed forces of a foreign state?

Section 28 of the Nationality Act

Anyone with more than one citizenship who enters the service of the armed forces of a foreign state without prior approval by the Federal Ministry of Defence or its designated representative, or without being entitled, on the basis of a bilateral treaty, to join the armed forces of this state voluntarily, will thereby lose his or her German citizenship.

What can I do if I have lost my German citizenship?

Losing German citizenship also means losing all the rights and obligations associated with it. Even if you still have your German passport, in legal terms you have become a foreigner and require a residence and work permit to live and work in Germany. 

You may regain your German citizenship through re-naturalization. Please contact your local naturalization authority for more information.

Dual citizenship- multiple nationality

Is it possible to have another citizenship in addition to German citizenship?

In certain cases, German nationality law allows its citizens to have or acquire an additional citizenship. Multiple nationality may result from the following situations:

  • As a rule, children born to a German and a non-German parent, or to parents with dual nationality, acquire the nationalities of both parents at birth, according to the principle of descent.
  • Ethnic German repatriates and family members admitted with them acquire German citizenship when they are issued a repatriates certificate, in accordance with Section 7 of the Nationality Act; they do not have to give up their previous citizenship. If allowed by their countries of origin, their children born in Germany then acquire at birth both German citizenship and that of their parents.
  • In certain cases, German citizens may apply for dual nationality, allowing them to acquire foreign citizenship while retaining their German citizenship.

Those who have multiple nationality for one of these reasons normally pass multiple nationality on to their children. In such cases, German law allows children to retain their multiple nationality permanently; i.e., they do not have choose between their German and foreign citizenship upon reaching the age of majority.Persons with multiple nationality may, however, choose to give up their German citizenship (Section 26 of the Nationality Act).

The number of German multiple nationals is unknown because in Germany they are treated exclusively as German nationals and cannot invoke their other nationality when dealing with the authorities. Multiple nationality is no longer a rarity and does not cause any special difficulties.

Can I become a naturalized citizen without giving up my previous citizenship?

Section 12 of the Nationality Act

As a rule, no. One aim of German nationality law is to avoid creating multiple nationality through naturalization as far as possible. However, there are exceptions for cases of special hardship, specifically:

  • for victims of political persecution and recognized refugees, the requirement to obtain release from previous citizenships are generally waived;
  • when applicants cannot reasonably be expected to meet the conditions for release from their nationality, including unreasonable fees or humiliating practices to obtain release;
  • for elderly persons, if being released from their foreign nationality would cause unreasonable difficulties, and being denied naturalization would constitute a special hardship;
  • or if being released from previous citizenship would cause significant disadvantages, particularly in terms of finances or property rights.

In addition, candidates for naturalization from EU countries are subject to special rules.

Do special rules apply to EU citizens?

Given the aim of increasing European integration, the law contains special rules for EU citizens: They are not required to give up their previous citizenship in order to become naturalized German citizens, if their country of origin does not require Germans to give up their citizenship to become naturalized citizens of that country. According to Section 25 para. 2 of the Nationality Act, Germans who become naturalized citizens of another EU country may receive permission to retain their German citizenship.

This rule currently applies to the following EU countries: Greece, the UK, Ireland, Portugal, Sweden, Finland, France, Belgium, Italy, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Malta and Cyprus. With regard to the Netherlands and Slovenia, it applies only to certain categories of persons.

Do multiple nationals have special rights?

In Germany, a person with foreign citizenship in addition to his/her German citizenship (a multiple national) has exactly the same rights as all other German citizens.

German multiple nationals cannot claim additional rights in Germany through recourse to their other nationality, nor can they avoid any obligations, such as compulsory military service.

Additional rights may result in relation to the other state whose nationality they have. Whether they may exercise these rights (such as the right to vote) depends on the laws of the other state and does not affect policy, society or the individual in Germany.

When German multiple nationals are in the other country of their citizenship, the German embassy or consulate there may be able to provide them only limited protection, as such persons are regarded by the other country primarily as their citizens and treated accordingly. For this reason, multiple nationals in the relevant age groups should inform themselves in advance of rules regarding compulsory military service.

Information for persons subject to compulsory military service

As a rule, male German nationals are required to perform military service in Germany; the same applies to German multiple nationals. If a multiple national has fulfilled his German military obligations, this is normally recognized by his other country of citizenship, on the basis of numerous international treaties, bilateral agreements or the relevant national law.

If the person has already fulfilled his military obligations in his country of origin before becoming a naturalized German citizen, the actual length of service will be recognized in Germany. For example, a Turkish national who completed the one-month military service in Turkey may, after becoming a naturalized German citizen, have his compulsory military service in Germany reduced by one month; the remainder must still be served.

A German multiple national who voluntarily enters the armed forces of his other country of citizenship will lose his or her German citizenship.


Other ways of gaining German citizenship


Who may acquire citizenship by declaration?

Section 5 of the Nationality Act

Until 1 July 1993, a child born out of wedlock acquired German citizenship only if his or her mother was a German citizen. As part of reforms intended to give children born out of wedlock the same rights as those born to married parents, Section 4 of the Nationality Act was amended to create the possibility of citizenship by declaration, according to Section 5 of the Nationality Act, for persons born before 1 July 1993.

According to Section 5, children born before 1 July 1993 to a German father who was not married to the child’s non-German mother may acquire German citizenship by declaration before their 23rd birthday, if they have legal proof or recognition of paternity and have legally resided in Germany for at least three years.

Can citizenship be acquired through adoption?

Section 6 of the Nationality Act

A child adopted by a German citizen may acquire German citizenship, as long as the application for adoption was submitted before the child’s 18th birthday.

How do ethnic German repatriates and their family members acquire German citizenship?

Section 7 of the Nationality Act

Persons who are admitted into Germany as ethnic German repatriates are automatically granted German citizenship when they are issued a repatriates certificate in accordance with Section 15 para. 1 or para. 2 of the Federal Expellees Act. The same applies to spouses married to an ethnic German repatriate for at least three years before leaving the area subject to expulsion, and to children and grandchildren of ethnic German repatriates.

To whom do the provisions in Article 116 para. 2 of the Basic Law apply?

Former German citizens who were deprived of their citizenship by the Nazi regime between 30 January 1933 and 8 May 1945 on political, racial or religious grounds may have their German citizenship restored upon application or residence in Germany. The same applies to their children and grandchildren.


Becoming a German citizen by naturalization


What are the requirements for becoming anaturalized German citizen?

Section 10,para. 1 of the NationalityAct

To beeligible for naturalization, a person has to have livedlegally in Germany for atleast eight years and possess the appropriate residence permit.Foreigners who have successfully completed an integration courseare eligible for naturalization after seven years. Personswishing to become naturalizedcitizens must also declare theirallegiance to our constitutionand have a sufficient commandof the German language.Knowledge of German is anessential prerequisite for integrationinto our society. Candidates fornaturalization must be able tosupport themselves without recourseto social assistance or unemploymentbenefits (Arbeitslosengeld II), unlessthis is due to circumstancesbeyond their control; nor canthey have committed any seriouscriminal offences. In addition,they must give up theirprevious citizenship. In certaincases or for certain groupsof persons, however, multiplenationality may be considered.

Special rulesapply to persons with specialstatus (displaced foreigners andstateless persons), making iteasier for them to becomenaturalized citizens.  

Your localnaturalization authority will beable to tell you whetheryou are eligible fornaturalization and how to apply.They will also determine whetheryou are eligible for discretionarynaturalization.

What is discretionary naturalization?

Section 8of the Nationality Act

Discretionarynaturalization rests not onentitlement derived from law buton a decision made atthe legal discretion of therelevant authority. Persons whowish to become naturalized butare not yet legally eligibleto do so may, undercircumstances defined in Section8 of the Nationality Act,become naturalized citizens atthe discretion of theauthorities.

What is derivative naturalization?

Section 10,para. 2 of the NationalityAct

Spouses whoare not yet eligible fornaturalization and minor childrenmay apply for naturalizationalong with their eligible spouseor parent, which gives familiesof foreigners the possibility ofacquiring German citizenship together.

Apart fromthe minimum residence requirement,the requirements for derivativenaturalization are the same asfor naturalization on the basisof legal entitlement.

Are spouses orregistered partners of Germancitizens eligible for earlynaturalization?

Section 9of the Nationality Act

Spouses orregistered same-sex partners ofGerman citizens are eligible fornaturalization after three yearsof legal residence in Germany.They must have been marriedor in a registered partnershipfor at least two yearsat the time of application.The general requirements fornaturalization also apply.

For moreinformation, please contact thenaturalization authority responsible foryour place of residence.

How well donaturalization applicants have tospeak German?

Applicants fornaturalization are required tohave a sufficient command ofthe German language. Sufficientcommand is defined as beingable to cope in Germanwith daily life in Germany,including dealing with theauthorities, and being able toconduct conversations commensurate withone’s age and education. Asa rule, this includes beingable to read, understand andorally reproduce a German texton a general topic.

The abilityto speak German is anabsolute necessity. Being ableto communicate in German isessential for social andeconomic integration.

For moreinformation on proof ofsufficient command of German,please contact your localnaturalization authority.

Can extremist orcriminal foreigners become naturalizedcitizens?

No.First ofall, the overwhelming majorityof foreigners permanently livingin Germany are just aslaw-abiding as their Germancounterparts. This is documentedby official crime statistics andthe information gathered by theFederal Office for theProtection of the Constitution.

Since 1January 2000, nationality lawcontains a clause prohibitingnaturalization when there isfactual evidence of anti-constitutional,extremist or terrorist activity.Before granting citizenship, theauthorities regularly check withthe police, security authoritiesand authorities for theprotection of the constitutionfor such evidence. Further, allapplicants over 16 are requiredto declare their express andbinding allegiance to the freeand democratic principles of theBasic Law.

What is thefee for naturalization?

The feefor regular or discretionarynaturalization is €255. Areduced fee of €51 appliesfor each dependent minor childnaturalized along with aparent.

Fees maybe reduced or waived completelyin certain cases. According toSection 38, para. 2, fourthsentence of the Nationality Act,the state and localnaturalization authorities may reduceor waive the fee entirelyif appropriate or in thepublic interest.


Becoming a German citizen by birth


Section 4,para. 1 of the Nationality Act

A child acquires German citizenship at birth if one of his or her parents is a German citizen. If only the father is a German citizen and is not married to the child’s mother, legal proofor recognition of paternity isrequired prior to the child’s23rd birthday.

What does "principle of birthplace"(jus soli) mean?

Section 4,para. 3 of the NationalityAct

In additionto the principle of descent,since 1 January 2000 Germannationality law also recognizesthe principle of birthplace (inLatin: jus soli) for theacquisition of citizenship. Accordingto this principle, children bornin Germany to non-German parentsmay, under certain conditions,acquire German citizenship. Theseconditions are as follows: Oneparent has to have livedlegally in Germany for atleast eight years prior tothe child’s birth and beeneither an EU citizen entitledto freedom of movement, anequally entitled citizen of anEEC member state, a Swisscitizen entitled to freedom ofmovement, or the holder ofan EU residence permit ora settlement permit inaccordance with the ResidenceAct.


Who can become a German citizen?


Who can become a German citizen? According tonationality law, anyone who hasacquired German citizenship remainsa German citizen unless heor she loses that citizenship.Every German citizen is entitledto the same rights andsubject to the same obligations,regardless of the legal meansby which they acquiredcitizenship. These rights andobligations include the right topolitical participation (the rightto vote), the obligation ofmilitary service, and the rightto diplomatic protection abroad. Refugees,expellees, ethnic German repatriatesand their family members whowere admitted to Germany inaccordance with Article 116para. 1 of the BasicLaw and granted the statusof Germans without Germancitizenship were granted Germancitizenship by law on 1August 1999. The specialnaturalization procedure for thesegroups no longer applies. Sincethat date, persons admitted toGermany as ethnic Germanrepatriates are granted Germancitizenship by law when issueda certificate in accordance withthe Federal Expellees Act.