Feb 2, 2022 | Blog, News
On January 28, 2022, a new amendment of the Law on Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania came into force. It clarifies eligibility for Lithuanian citizenship, allowing applicants with ancestors naturalized in another country before 1940 to get dual Lithuanian citizenship. Until recently, the Migration Department was often blocking Lithuanian citizenship restoration claiming that naturalization in another country before 1940 meant an automatic loss of Lithuanian citizenship. After the new amendment came into force, applicants with ancestors naturalized before 1940, will be able to apply for dual Lithuanian citizenship.
The previous interpretation of the citizenship law requires applicants to provide evidence that their Lithuanian ancestors pursued to maintain Lithuanian citizenship in their new country of residence until 15 June 1940. Lithuanian citizenship was denied if their Lithuanian ancestors were naturalized before 15 June 1940.
According to the new regulation, an individual who was a citizen of the Republic of Lithuania at any time before 15 June 1940 (or their descendants) will be eligible for reinstatement of their citizenship. Earlier formulation stated that a person can restore Lithuanian citizenship only if they (or their ancestor) had Lithuanian citizenship on 15 June 1940. The Migration Department’s view is that anyone that acquired citizenship of another country before 1940, automatically lost their Lithuanian citizenship.
Those persons, whose ancestors had their citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania revoked by a decision of the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Lithuania, were and are unable to apply for the reinstitution of citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania. However, such cases are extremely rare and, in our experience, they affect less than one percent of potential applicants.
There is a possibility that this new amendment will be challenged at the Constitutional court. However, the process might take at least 1-2 years and this time usually is sufficient to prepare the application and get Lithuanian citizenship. Since the amendment already came into power, it opens an opportunity to get Lithuanian citizenship for more descendants of Lithuanian citizens. Even if the amendment were reversed, citizenship that was already granted would not be affected.
If you have Lithuanian ancestors and would like to acquire a Lithuanian dual passport, reach out to us via email at [email protected]. We offer assistance in document acquisition, application preparation, translation services, and guidance throughout the process until citizenship is granted.
Apply now, before rules change again! Email us today so we can assess your eligibility for a Lithuanian passport by descent.
May 13, 2021 | News, Process
Now you are eligible for dual Lithuanian citizenship even if your Lithuanian ancestors were naturalized in other countries before 1940. If one of your parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents left Lithuania before 1940 and got citizenship of Brazil, USA, South Africa, or any other country before the start of WW2 in 1940 until recently you were eligible only for single Lithuanian citizenship. Single Lithuanian citizenship meant that when getting Lithuanian citizenship you had to renounce current citizenship that you have.
The citizenship law did not change but because of a precedent-setting court ruling, now most of the applicants can get Lithuanian citizenship even if their ancestors got citizenship of another country before 1940. It is not considered anymore that a person who got citizenship of another country lost Lithuanian citizenship automatically unless documents exist that prove the fact of loss of Lithuanian citizenship.
Dual Lithuanian citizenship cannot be acquired only when documents stating that the applicant’s ancestor had lost Lithuanian citizenship exist. In the majority of cases, Lithuania did not keep a record of people that left Lithuania, and information gathering about who got citizenship in other countries was sporadic. Therefore documents stating that person lost Lithuanian citizenship before 1940, because they acquired citizenship of another country are very rare. We at De Civitate search for these documents at the start of the application process and will find out whether the applicant’s ancestor lost Lithuanian citizenship before the application is submitted, thus saving the applicant a significant amount of time and money.
Lithuanian citizenship law and its interpretation already changed several times, thus changing eligibility criteria for dual and single citizenship. These changes resulted in situations when some members of the same family could get only single citizenship while their siblings or parents had dual, just because they applied at different times.
We always advise applying for a Lithuanian dual passport as soon as you can before rules change again. If a person is granted dual Lithuanian citizenship, even if eligibility rules change again they will not affect a holder of dual Lithuanian citizenship.
If you have Lithuanian citizenship, your children would get dual Lithuanian citizenship (and get the rights of EU citizens), by birth. By obtaining Lithuanian citizenship, you are getting citizenship not only for yourself but also for your children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. This is a great opportunity for your family and future generations. Lithuanian citizenship can be restored only for a descendant of three generations — if your great-grandparents left Lithuania, you are still able to restore Lithuanian citizenship, but your children will not be able to restore it. However, they can get Lithuanian citizenship by birth if they are born after you already restored Lithuanian citizenship and got your Lithuanian passport.
If you have Lithuanian ancestors and would like to acquire a Lithuanian dual passport, reach out to us via email at [email protected]. We offer assistance in document acquisition, application preparation, translation services, and guidance throughout the process until citizenship is granted. Apply now, before rules change again! Email us today so we can assess your eligibility for a Lithuanian passport by descent.
Apr 18, 2021 | News, Process
Due to amendments to the citizenship law of Lithuania that came into force on the 1st of July, 2016 –more people can now get a dual Lithuanian Citizenship again.
In general, you can acquire Lithuanian citizenship by descent and by restoration if:
- At least one of your parents, grandparents, or great grandparents were citizens of the Republic of Lithuania (which existed from 1918 to 1940);
- Your ancestor left Lithuania sometime before Lithuania restored its independence on March 11, 1990;
- Your Lithuanian ancestors left to any country which was not part of the former Soviet Union (In case your ancestor left to any of the Soviet Union countries, you might still be eligible for single or dual Lithuanian citizenship depending on the time and leaving circumstances described under Lithuania Nationality Law).
Lithuanian citizenship can be obtained by the restoration of citizenship, naturalization, birth, and under conditions established by Lithuania nationality law.
Until the recent Lithuanian nationality law change, descendants of Lithuanian citizens that left Lithuania prior to 1940 could only get single Lithuanian citizenship and had to renounce their current one.
Except for the general rules, there are some other nuances that you should know in order to find out whether you are eligible for Lithuanian citizenship.
For example, one of the cases is related to the borders change issue. If a person can prove that they or their ancestors were born in the territory of present day Lithuania after 1918 then they can get Lithuanian nationality. In case the place where your ancestors were born is not a part of Lithuania today then you should find other proof that your ancestor was a Lithuanian citizen or held Lithuanian citizenship.
If your ancestor left Lithuania before 1918, then, unfortunately you are not eligible for Lithuanian citizenship. Lithuania restored its independence in 1918 and only persons that lived in Lithuania after this date got Lithuanian citizenship.
Lithuanian immigration has resulted in hundreds of thousands of people with Lithuanian ancestry living outside Lithuania. Large waves of Lithuanian migration occurred during the 19th and 20th centuries, a large portion of whom were Jewish. Communities in the United States make up the largest part of this diaspora, where as many as one million Americans can claim Lithuanian descent and with the largest concentrations of Lithuanian Americans making their homes in the Great Lakes area and the Northeast. Lithuanian communities in Mexico, Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, and Uruguay also grew before and after World War II. Many Lithuanian citizens migrated to Israel, which today has a large Lithuanian/Jewish community. People with Lithuanian ancestors who are thinking of immigration to Lithuania should prove their Lithuanian genealogy in order to restore their lost citizenship.
Because of different times and reasons of immigration, we can say that almost all Lithuanian Australians can obtain dual citizenship, while we have a mixed picture for Lithuanian Americans, Canadians and Brazilians. Today as many as 70% of South Africa’s Jews trace their descent to Lithuania and most of them can get Lithuanian citizenship.
Obtaining dual Lithuanian citizenship or immigration to Lithuania has many benefits. But relatives of no more than the third degree of kinship can receive it. And if you do not, your children may no longer be able to take advantage of this opportunity. Therefore, do not delay the study of your Lithuanian genealogy, and apply to check the possibility of obtaining Lithuanian citizenship. If you are interested in getting Lithuanian citizenship by descent but still not sure whether you qualify for citizenship, feel free to contact us.
We are ready to guide you through the application process and help you to restore your Lithuanian nationality rights based on your Lithuanian genealogy.
Sep 29, 2020 | News, Process
The parliament of Lithuania will consider amendments initiated by the Ministry of the Interior to expand the cases when minors who have acquired Lithuanian citizenship by birth may also retain citizenship of another country.
Proposed amendments stipulate that a person who acquired Lithuanian citizenship by birth and acquired the citizenship of another state before the age of 18 without being born there, will be able to choose which citizenship to retain until they turn 20 years old.
If a person does not renounce the citizenship of another country until he or she reaches the age of 20, they will lose Lithuanian citizenship.
Amendments to the Law on Citizenship were approved this week after submission and will be further considered by committees of the Lithuanian parliament.
At the moment children lose their Lithuanian citizenship automatically if their parents acquire citizenship of another country for them. If amendments to the citizenship law are accepted children would have two years to decide which citizenship they want to keep after they reach the age of majority.
According to the data of the Ministry of the Interior, every year about 300 persons under the age of 18 who acquire the citizenship of another state lose their Lithuanian citizenship.
The amendment also wants to establish that all procedures related to Lithuanian citizenship should be carried out through one institution – the Migration Department. At the moment the Migration Department and the Ministry of Interior both participate in the Lithuanian citizenship restoration process. This change might speed up the process of restoring Lithuanian citizenship by descent.
We at De Civitate offer dual citizenship assistance to people with Lithuanian ancestry. Our clients do not have to be in Lithuania during the application process. We will handle all the application process from document acquisition, translation, application submission, and making follow-ups with the Lithuanian authorities until citizenship is granted.
Email us at [email protected] for more information.
May 28, 2020 | News, Why restore
Lithuania is a small but very unique country located in Northern Europe. Visitors of Lithuania fall in love with the splendid views, forest reserves, and the magnificent Baltic shoreline.
Apart from these, there are a few more facts about Lithuania that might surprise you. Here are some of them:
- During the end of the 14th century, Lithuania was the largest country in Europe. The Kingdom was formed by several tribes living in the country at the moment. The Grand Duchy of Lithuania was also one of the most powerful kingdoms in Europe during the era.
- Lithuania was declared to be the geographical center of Europe. Renowned French geographer Jean-George Affholder determined that 54°54′N 25°19′E is the location of Europe’s center point, which is just near a Lithuanian village named Purnuškės.
- 1/3 of Lithuania is covered by nature reserves and forest parks. One of the oldest trees in Europe, the Stelmuze Oak is located in one of those forests. It is estimated to be 1500-2000 years old, so it is older than Lithuania itself.
- Lithuania is also known as ‘the land of storks’, which is Lithuania’s national bird.
- The Lithuanian language came from an Indo-European language group and is one of the oldest known languages, closest to the ancient Sanskrit.
- The longest Lithuanian word has 37 letters: “nebeprisikiškiakopūsteliaujantiesiems” which roughly translates to “people who used pick up rabbit grass in a forest, but are no longer doing that”.
- The NBA star Arvydas Sabonis is from Lithuania. Other Lithuanian players in the NBA include Mindaugas Kuzminskas and Domantas Sabonis (son of Arvydas Sabonis).
Enjoyed these facts? We at De Civitate offer dual citizenship assistance to people with Lithuanian ancestry. Our clients don’t have to be in Lithuania during the whole process. We’ll handle the application process from document acquisition, translation, application submission, and making follow-ups with the Lithuanian authorities until citizenship is granted.
You can contact us at [email protected] for more information.
May 8, 2020 | News, Process
From Monday (May 4th, 2020) the Migration Department of Lithuania started offering a new service – issuing Lithuanian passport on the same day. The new service is offered only at a branch of the Migration Department in Naugardukas st. in Vilnius. This service, probably, will not be offered in branches of the Migration Department in other towns of Lithuania or at Lithuanian embassies abroad since Lithuanian passports are being printed only in Vilnius.
To receive the passport on the same day, the applicant has to apply for it before noon. The extra fast service costs 190 euro, however it is possible to get the passport cheaper, if the applicant can wait longer. Regular cost for a passport is 43 euro, however it is issued in one month.
Until this week it was possible to receive a passport in one work day, i.e. a person could receive the passport the next day after applying for it.
To apply for Lithuanian passport in Lithuania you will need the following documents: your current valid passport; document about restoring your Lithuanian citizenship and money for payment (cash or card).
We, at De Civitate, assist people with Lithuanian heritage to obtain citizenship of Lithuania. We help our clients through all the application process: search in the archives, preparing the applications, translating the documents, submitting the application, and following up with relevant authorities until Lithuanian citizenship is granted.
Contact us at [email protected] for more information.