While a person generally has one citizenship which they obtain by birth or by naturalization, it is possible for someone to be a citizen of two countries. They are said to hold dual citizenship, which happens when they have been sworn in as a citizen of another country that is not their place of birth.

Can You Be a Citizen of Two Countries?

It is possible for a person to be a citizen of two countries, such as in the United States where dual citizenship is allowed. However, other countries may not permit it.

Dual Citizenship Permitted in the U.S.

Dual citizenship is permitted in the United States. That means that foreign nationals who apply for naturalization and are sworn in as U.S. citizens are able to retain their citizenship in their home country. In the same way, Americans who obtain citizenship in another country can still retain their U.S. citizenship.

Dual Citizenship Not Permitted in Other Countries

However, not all countries permit dual citizenship and require the individual who has obtained citizenship in another country to lose their original citizenship. There are also countries that require the individual to submit a form and go through a special process to preserve their citizenship there. In these cases, the form needs to be accomplished prior to an application for naturalization in the United States.

The list of countries where dual citizenship is not allowed changes over time, but some of the common ones include:

  • Germany
  • India
  • Russia

It’s important that individuals check with their home country to determine if dual citizenship is permitted and uncover what they need to do to preserve their original citizenship.

Oath of Allegiance to the United States

When a person is approved to become a naturalized citizen of the United States, they will take an oath of allegiance. In the oath is a statement that they are giving up their citizenship to other countries. This declaration is important to consider, especially in case the individual’s home country does not permit dual citizenship.

Tax Implications of Dual Citizenship

Becoming a dual citizen can also have tax implications. Anyone who has a lot of assets and a large income stream should talk to an international tax advisor before applying for second citizenship.

How to Find Out if Dual Citizenship is Allowed in Your Home Country

To find out if their home country permits dual citizenship, individuals can visit the country’s embassy webpage. They can also do a quick google search or speak to an immigration lawyer.