On January 19, 2024, the German parliament passed a law to modernize the German Nationality Act. The legislation is expected to come into force at the beginning of the second quarter of 2024.
The key changes under the new law are as follows:
- Multi-nationality is generally possible: Naturalization applicants no longer have to give up their previous nationality during naturalization, unless this is required under the nationality law of the country of origin. German nationals who acquire a different nationality can also easily retain their German nationality. A retention permit is no longer required.
- Naturalization is accelerated: Instead of after eight years, people will be able to obtain German citizenship after five years.
- Special performance is rewarded: With “special integration services” naturalization is possible after only three years.
- Eased Ius-soli purchase: All children of foreign parents born in Germany will acquire German citizenship in the future and can retain the nationality of their parents if at least one parent has been legally living in Germany for more than five years and has a permanent right of residence. The option regulation is completely eliminated and the pre-stay period of the relevant parent is shortened from eight to five years.
- Life performance of the guest worker generation is recognized: Proof of oral language skills is sufficient for naturalization and no naturalization test is necessary.
Erickson Insights and Analysis
Erickson Immigration Group will continue to monitor developments and share updates as more news is available. Please contact your employer or EIG attorney if you have questions about anything we’re reporting above or case-specific questions.