Obtaining dual citizenship – U.S. and Ireland

The United States allows dual citizenship with numerous countries, including Ireland.  A few years ago I found out Ireland offers citizenship by descent.  It is called “Citizenship through Foreign Births Registration (FBR)”.  The background work took me a couple of months and the whole process cost a few hundred dollars.  The FBR application took about 16-18 months to process.  I received my dual citizenship in May 2007.  I then applied for an Irish passport which I received in August 2007.

The rules:

One can become an Irish citizen by descent even if your parents were not Irish citizens.  If one of your grandparents was an Irish citizen you can apply for entry in the Foreign Births Register.  There is no requirement that you have ever stepped on Irish soil.  Since 1986, citizenship only takes effect as of the date of registration so any children born prior to your becoming a citizen are not automatically also citizens.

You need three forms of identification for your grandparent.  I sent in information for both my grandfather and grandmother just in case.  I used their Irish birth certificates, marriage certificate, and death certificates.  All these records can be obtained through contact information on the Internet.

Why:

I was interested in genealogy and had created a fairly extensive record of my family history in the Family Tree Maker tool based on the research my parents had done.  My father made copies of my grandparents’ birth records on a visit to Ireland but I never paid much attention to the details.  I decided to pursue Irish citizenship for the following reasons:

1. After my father died, I rekindled my interest in my family history.  I realized I could no longer get first hand answers to my questions and my children would have little hope of finding information if I did not document it.

2. I thought it would be easier to travel in Europe with an EU passport.  I found that to be true on a number of occasions, especially on a trip to London where my wife and I bypassed a long line at Heathrow.

3. I assumed this would be an advantage if I ever wanted to work in Ireland or somewhere else in Europe.

4. I thought it was something interesting to pursue.

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174 Responses to Obtaining dual citizenship – U.S. and Ireland

  1. Matt Simpson says:

    So… I forwarded the link to my Dad, saying that I didn’t think that I qualified, but that maybe he did. My grandpa didn’t come from Ireland. But his did.

    If my Dad get’s the citizenship, can I then reference him for my own application and get one too?

  2. bill says:

    My understanding is that citizenship does not pass to children born prior to the parent attaining citizenship. Only children born after someone becomes a citizen are eligible. So if your Dad qualified, you would not become a citizen. Also, spouses are not eligible.

    However, spouses can usually join an EU passport holder in the EU line at the airport. If not, I wouldn’t advise one spouse to tell the other I’ll see you in a couple of hours on the other side.

  3. Michael Rowe says:

    Hi Bill,

    I’ve done my Genalogy and I know that my American side is a split between Irish and native american. I was trying to find the actual records of John Rowe coming from Ireland around 1705 but can’t cross the pond.

  4. bill says:

    Hi Michael,

    There are genealogy sites and podcasts that might help you, but that is quite a long time ago. If you have really traced back to the ancestor that crossed the pond, perhaps there is hope. It will help if you can find the names of siblings and the county in Ireland. I haven’t traced my relatives back that far yet. When I’m in Ireland this summer I’ll see how far back I can go.

  5. Matt Simpson says:

    I talked to my Dad the other weekend about this. It turns out that it was **his** great grandfather, William O’Sullivan Meehan (his mother’s side), who came Ireland. So, not even he is a candidate.

    On his father’s side, we’re Simpsons going all the way back to pre American Revolution. The thinking is that Simpson is a Scottish name.

    My mother’s family is all German, with her grandparents coming directly from Germany pre WWI.

    So, I say… I’m 1/2 German, 1/4 Irish, and a fifth of Scotch.

  6. bill says:

    Hi Matt,

    You’re leaving bits of humor all over the place tonight.

    3 of my grandparents were not born in this country. Go back another generation with the 4th grandparent and there is only 1/8 that might have any history in this country. I’ll have to look into that relative. Ironically, that’s the person I know the least about.

  7. Patrice says:

    I just came across this blog as I was doing research into whether or not I have an ounce of eligibility of getting a dual irish-US citizenship as fourth generation Irish like my father did about not too long ago. I’m dissappointed that it stops at 3rd, I probably would have gotten more use out of it than him.

    Anyway, I saw Matt Simpson’s post and wanted to comment that I have heard of German dual citizenship for those who were pushed out during the war, you or your family might want to look into that.

    Patrice.

  8. Matt Simpson says:

    @Patrice – thanks for the insight. Which war? We were draft dodgers pre WW-I. Family legend is that Great Grampa was chased by the police because he called the Kaiser a “lumph.”

  9. Myles Mangan says:

    I have a question. My father was born in Ireland, but upon coming to the united states, gave up his Irish citizenship. Am I still eligible to obtain dual citizenship?

  10. bill says:

    If you are talking about the Republic of Ireland (not Northern Ireland), I have not seen any comments on the forms that relate to your case. My uninformed opinion would be that you can submit your application and it would probably be successful. I don’t see why not. Good luck!

    p.s. Sorry for the slow reply, but I was in Ireland for the past 10 days and just returned.

  11. Myles Mangan says:

    Thanks! that sounds like a pretty good idea.

    The only reason I’m upset that it took so long for a reply is because I’m extremely jealous that you were in Ireland!! 🙂 lucky!

  12. bill says:

    It was a great trip!

    One correction to my post. As I look at the form now, it does ask the question if your parent/grandparent renounced citizenship in the past. It does not say why they ask or if it matters, but they do ask.

  13. Ron says:

    It is true both parents do not have to be Irish citizens for their offspring to be entitled to Irish citizenship. However, one parent would have to be an Irish citizen in order for their children to be added to the FBR. For example, if your maternal grandfather was born in Ireland, then your mother has been an Irish citizen since her birth (unless she renounced her citizenship) Foreign-born children of a parent FROM Ireland are automatically Irish citizens at birth. Just wanted to clarify that …

  14. bill says:

    My understanding is that my father was not an Irish citizen because he never registered in the FBR so there would be no official record of him wrt Ireland. If what you are saying is accurate, then why wouldn’t my children be able to claim citizenship through my father (as their grandfather). They can’t claim through me because they were born before I registered. I was assuming they couldn’t claim through my father because he never registered.

    Do you have a source that explains this? I haven’t seen it in any information on the web.

  15. Ron says:

    Hi Bill,

    Yes, it is a little confusing! I’ve done a lot of research into this as my wife found out last year that her maternal grandfather was actually born in County Clare, Ireland — and not in Chicago as she had always believed.

    The following explains Irish citizenship by descent:

    A (Born in Ireland) Irish Citizen
    B (Child of A – not born in Ireland) Irish Citizen
    C (Child of B/grandchild of A) Must register in Foreign Births
    Register
    D (Child of C/great-grandchild of A) May register for Irish
    citizenship, provided that C had registered by the time of D’s
    birth

    So, since my wife’s grandfather was born in Ireland he was obviously an Irish citizen. His three biological sons and one daughter (my wife’s mother) were all born in the United States. According to Irish citizenship law, however, all four of them became Irish citizens automatically AT BIRTH despite the fact they were foreign born.

    In their case they do NOT have to apply for the FBR as they are already citizens — all they have to do is supply their local consulate or embassy with the proper documents to obtain their Irish passports. So, what I’m saying is, your father has been an Irish citizen since the day he was born and is entitled to an Irish passport!

    Being that my wife’s mother was already an Irish citizen (as well as my wife’s grandfather being born in Ireland) my wife is entitled to Irish citizenship, but she — just like you — needed to apply to be added to the Foreign Births Register before actually receiving citizenship.

    Okay, as far as it pertains to your current offspring the laws on the books in Ireland are not so generous. In order for one to register his or her children as Irish citizens one must have already been an Irish citizen BEFORE the birth of child. So, it’s not retroactive: Just because a parent recently obtained Irish citizenship via the FBR doesn’t mean that, for example, he or she can now pass citizenship to his child or teenager. However, any new children born (or adopted) from this point will be allowed Irish citizenship as long as the parent enters them in the FBR.

    Sincerely,

    Ron Cleveland

    P.S. – My wife applied for the FBR in February and she hopes to receive her Irish citizenship certificate some time next year!

  16. Ron says:

    http://www.dfa.ie/home/index.aspx?id=267

    Under the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Acts, 1956 to 2004, a person who was born outside Ireland is automatically an Irish citizen by descent if one of that person’s parents was an Irish citizen who was born in Ireland.

  17. bill says:

    Hi Ron,

    Thanks for the nice clear summary. I haven’t looked at the forms and web sites for a couple of years. I had a faint hope there was a path for my kids to get citizenship, but the fact that my father was a citizen doesn’t help since you can only use a grandparent BORN in Ireland – just being a citizen doesn’t help. I hadn’t focused on the fact that my father was actually an Irish citizen before your comment. Very interesting, but not the magic answer I was hoping for 🙂

    After your wife gets citizenship, she should get an Irish/EU passport. That will allow you to pass through airports in Europe much more quickly – a spouse can follow the EU citizen to the EU/short line! It’s been great.

    Good luck!

  18. Ron says:

    I’m glad to pass on the info!

    I believe the only way your children would be able to get Irish citizenship in the future is if they apply to be naturalized citizens after living with you in Ireland for, I believe, three consecutive years. (I know that probably doesn’t help your cause.)

    What’s also interesting is an Irish citizen used to be allowed to pass citizenship to a non-Irish spouse by making a post-nupital declaration at their local consulate. Unfortunately for people like myself the Irish government modified its citizenship laws in 2004. Nowadays in order for an American to receive Irish citizenship through his or her Irish citizen wife he must live with the Irish spouse in Ireland for four continuous years. (So, I’m out of luck at the moment!)

    http://www.citizensinformation.ie/categories/moving-country/irish-citizenship/becoming_an_irish_citizen_through_marriage

    Best wishes to you.

  19. Laura says:

    I have a confusing situation and maybe someone can help me. I have called the Irish Consulate in Chicago and not only me but they got confused also.

    My great grandparents (on my mothers side) came over on the boat, with 3 children, from Ireland. My grandfather was born in America about a year later.
    Now the problem is this: Chicago has no record of his birth (I have requested with no luck). My mother thinks her father was born at home (in Chicago)
    But..When his parents went in to get everyone naturalized for American citizenship, my grandfather is listed on the paper also.

    There is no record of my grandfathers birth in the US or in Ireland. All I have is my great grandparents birth & marriage certs. and my grandfathers naturalization paper.

    One other note.. on the naturalization paper for my grandfather it states he’s 3 years old at the time of the application. On the bottom of the paper where my great grandfather signed the paper it says he agrees he has been in the US for at least 5 years. So I agree this does prove my grandfather was born in the US.. but with his naturalization paper and no birth certificate does this give me any hope of getting an Irish passport?

  20. Bill says:

    Hi Laura,

    I can give you some opinions from my experience, but I am not an expert so take it with a grain of salt.

    If your grandfather was born in America and neither he nor your father formerly registered in the Foreign Birth Registry (FBR), I don’t believe you can claim any link. It doesn’t help even if you can prove your great grandfather was born in Ireland. I have been investigating this for my daughters and can’t find any place in the process that allows for this. I became an Irish citizen based on my grandparents, but since I did it after my children were born I cannot pass this on to them and they cannot reach back to a great grandparent.

    Regarding finding more information, I would be more optimistic. Perhaps you can find a US Census in that time period or later. It often lists place of birth and immigration date on the census. You can look up other family members too.

    Having your great grandparents birth and marriage certificates can lead you to lots of interesting information in Ireland. You must know the townlands and that can lead to lots of other information. If you are interested in genealogy research you can have some fun with that information.

    Good luck!

  21. Laura says:

    So the Nauralization paper I have for my grandfather, saying he’s a citizen of Great Britain,(I know he was born in the US tho) wont help me get a passport to Ireland? He was 3 when they applied for US citenzenship.

  22. Bill says:

    I’m only familiar with the current citizenship rules for the Republic of Ireland. You need 3 forms of identification for a grandparent – such as birth, marriage, and death.

    Not sure about rules for Northern Ireland or the UK in general.

  23. Laura says:

    Thank you Bill for your help. I will have to search this out more. The reason his naturalization papers say Great Britain is cuz Ireland wasn’t Independent yet when they applied for US citizenship in 1914. This again might hinder me.

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  25. Jim says:

    Hi,

    I have a couple questions….

    1) If my grandparent was born in Ireland, came to America and was naturalized, will the naturalization (renounce absolutely and forever all allegiance…. to George King of Great Britain and Ireland) prevent me from obtaining my FBR?

    2) If I obtain my dual citizenship and move to Ireland with my wife and child, how will they be able to live in Ireland (for 4 and 3 years respectively) to apply to become naturalized citizens?

    3) Will they be changing the limit for FBR from a grandparent to great-grandparent?

    Thanks,

    Jim
    Chicago.

  26. Bill says:

    Hi Jim,

    I’ll take a shot at these, although I have no legal standing in these matters:

    1. I don’t think it is a problem they your grandparent became a US citizen. If you have proof of his birth in Ireland and 3 forms of official identity like birth, marriage, death certificates I believe you should be okay.

    2. With your Irish citizenship you will be an EU citizen and have rights to work in any EU country, of course, including Ireland. If you search the web it appears there is not a problem with them living with you. You might check the movetoireland web site, for example this page and also this page at another web site that discusses naturalization for spouse and children. Also, another naturalization summary is here.

    3. I’ve researched the great-grandparent scenario for my kids, but have found nothing. I became a citizen by FBR after they were born so they don’t assume those rights. There are rumors from time to time, but as far as I know nothing concrete.

    I hope that helps a little. Good luck! If you hear of a change to great-grandparent FBR please let me know.

  27. Ron says:

    Hi Bill,

    I thought I’d visit here again to update a few things …

    My wife was more than happy to be added to the FBR in August of 2009! I’d like to emphasize that her application was successful despite the absence of her Irish-born grandfather’s birth certificate.

    We had sent correspondence to the General Register Office in Dublin, but they were unable to locate the civil registration of her grandfather’s birth in Ireland. My wife was instructed by our local Irish Consulate General to submit her grandfather’s baptismal certificate from his parish in County Clare as a substitute proof of his birth. (Luckily her grandmother had an official copy in safekeeping!)

    Unfortunately our son is not entitled to Irish citizenship since he was born before my wife was added to the FBR. We’ve done a lot of research into the acquisition of Irish citizenship and it appears the only way our young son can receive citizenship is if he resides in Ireland with us and becomes a naturalized citizen.

    Normally a foreigner is required to live in Ireland for a minimum of five years before a citizenship application can be made. Including processing time it may take upwards of seven years to actually receive Irish citizenship. However, the five-year residency requirement can be waived for the foreign children of an Irish citizen – assuming all are residing together in Ireland and have Irish heritage. In this case an application for a Certificate of Naturalisation on Behalf of a Minor of Irish Descent or Irish Associations can be lodged with the Irish Immigration and Naturalisation Service.

    This particular application can be submitted after the minor child or children have resided in Ireland with their Irish citizen parent for several months. Direct Irish lineage must be proven and, again, the children applying MUST be resident in Ireland at the time of the application. If successful, these children – who previously lost out on FBR inclusion – will become naturalized Irish citizens within six months to two years.

    So, for a minor with a great-grandparent who was born anywhere on the island of Ireland (yes, Northern Ireland is included), Irish citizenship is still possible if he or she moves to Ireland with his/her Irish parent (parent must be on the FBR). Foreign adults can also apply for naturalization based on Irish descent or associations, but they must reside in Ireland for three consecutive years prior to applying. Obviously a work permit or student visa is needed to legally reside in Ireland for that length of time.

    I realize this might not be most desirable or realistic option for those seeking Irish citizenship, but I just wanted to put the info out there for those who might consider this overseas journey.

    Ron

  28. Bill says:

    Hi Ron,

    Thanks so much for returning with a great summary of your research. People tend to stumble on this discussion when searching for dual citizenship with Ireland. You are doing a nice service for others by sharing your research.

    Congratulations to your wife for getting her citizenship last year!!!

    Your research re-confirms what I have seen. I guess my kids don’t have any easy path to Irish citizenship. Not likely it will ever happen at this point 🙁

  29. Ron says:

    Bill,

    You’re welcome. I was on a quest to discover some sort of way to help my son gain Irish citizenship. However, short of moving to Ireland it looks like my son is out of luck at the moment!

    After my wife became an Irish citizen she passed all of the documents from her successful application to other family members. Her sisters and cousins will eventually be added to the FBR, too.

    I know a lot of people got excited when the prime minister of Ireland suggested that descendents with Irish great-grandparents should be able to access Irish citizenship. But my understanding is the hypothetical change would not affect current laws regarding the FBR. From what I have read it sounds like a special path to naturalized citizenship could be created. To be eligible someone with an Irish-born great-grandparent would have to work or study in Ireland for a significant amount of time.

    For those who cherish their Irish roots but have no entitlement to citizenship the Irish government is offering a Certificate of Irish Heritage. One must be able to document his or her direct link to an Irish-born relative in order to qualify. It has been proposed that discounts on travel, accommodation, and tourist destinations in Ireland would be given to certificate holders. The application will be made available later this year on the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs web site.

    My wife will soon apply for her Irish passport. We’d like to fly into Ireland sometime next year and hopefully spend a few weeks over there. We’re city people, so we’ll start out in Dublin, but we would also like to visit the Irish countryside and coastline. Would you happen to have any recommendations for us?

    Many thanks,

    Ron

  30. Bill says:

    Hi Ron,

    If things change or you ever find a practical way for your kids to become Irish citizens please let me know.

    Regarding planning your trip to Ireland, I can definitely help. I’ve been three times and had a stay in Dublin each time. If you read some of my other blog entries you’ll get more details about those trips. I posted one itinerary here. You’ll also get great free help from Pat Preston at IrelandExpert.com.

    It you want to do family research, I have some blog entries on my journey. Seems like you’ll know the townland and that is pretty much all you need. Just show up and ask people. You will get a great welcome and lots of help. Ancestry.com and other sites with free census information will be of help as well.

    If you just want a vacation and do the tourist thing, there are many top 10 lists for Dublin and for Ireland as well. If you are a city person, you’ll enjoy Dublin but you’ll get a bigger kick out of the rural parts of Ireland. If you don’t want to drive, a bus tour can get you across the country and see the major sites. You can also go by train and then take 1 day bus tours from your base cities. The most fun we had on each trip was definitely in the small towns – no question about it.

    Feel free to email me directly to continue the conversation. Good luck!

  31. Tim O'Neill says:

    Hello Bill: Thanks for having such a nice website. My question is this: my father is already on the FBR. My brother filed the proper grandparent (irish born) and parent (USA born) documentation while my father was still alive. Can I just prove my relation to my father, or do I still need to file my grandparents information? I currently don’t have easy access to my grandparents information is why I ask.

    thanks

    Tim

  32. Bill says:

    Hi Tim,

    Thanks. I don’t have any experience with your scenario. My father wasn’t registered, so I had to establish evidence of one of my grandparents.

    However, I would think if your father was registered in the FBR before you were born that might mean you only need to have evidence of his birth/marriage/death and would not need a grandparent. But if he was entered in the FBR after your birth you might need to have evidence of a grandparent.

    I would advise starting with the link at the top of this blog entry and doing other searching. Lots of sites discuss this topic. Good luck!

  33. Cormac says:

    Bill,

    I just applied for citizenship through my grandfather in the beginning of October. I applied through the Irish Consulate General in Chicago. My question to you is whether you’ve heard what the current processing time is when one applies through Chicago? I, of course, asked the Consulate but they give the very, very vague answer of anywhere up to 2 years. My documents themselves should be up to snuff. I had all birth, death and marriage certificates. All long birth certificates provided were long form. I even had an apostille placed on the marriage certificates. So, I believe I won’t be tripped up there.

  34. Bill says:

    I don’t know about Chicago. When I did mine through New York, I did the same thing you did with long forms and apostille. I also provided information on two grandparents hoping that might help. I think the letter acknowledging receipt said 18-24 months and it took about 16-18 months. Then, my passport application took about 4 months. But that was in a different city and at a different time, so I’m not sure it means much.

    It sounds like you are in good shape. Good luck!

  35. Katie says:

    Hello!

    My husbands Grandmother and Father where both born in Ireland. Hes going to submit the Grandmother’s BC, if they were married in the US would that help to give that. What else can we submit, I know she was a nun in Ireland.. Im not sure where, im just starting this.
    He needs to submit his Fathers infomation too. Would his BC be enough?
    One more question, do we have to submit the information we collected in person to the office, we are going to the NY one!

    Thanks in advance! and congrats!

    Katie

  36. Bill says:

    You need 3 official, certified forms of ID. They don’t have to all be from Ireland. A US marriage certificate should be fine. If she is deceased a US death certificate is fine. Both would need to be certified by the vital records office in the state. When you get the form it should explain exactly what is permissible.

    Unless things have changed, you don’t need to appear in person. I did not.

    Thanks and good luck!

  37. Bill says:

    Upon re-reading your post, did you really mean his father or grandfather was born in Ireland? If it is his father, then his father must be an citizen and I think your process is simple. Shouldn’t you be able to register in the FBR with just his information?

  38. Aviva Hunter says:

    Hello- I was wondering if you could help me on this journey by answering a question. My grandmother was born in Ireland, but became a american citizen prior to my fathers birth. Does this dis qualify me ( the grand-daughter) from being able to apply for citizenship? Thanks,
    Aviva

  39. Bill says:

    Hi Aviva, I don’t believe it disqualifies you. I don’t recall any question like that on the form. You are filling it out based on your grandmother, not your father. I would say you should submit the form. Good luck!

  40. Erin says:

    Hi Bill,

    Great information here! Thanks for all of your tips! A few questions:

    1) I applied for Irish Foreign Birth through descent in January 2011 (4 months ago). I found out I was pregnant in February 2011…so if I’m understanding correctly if I haven’t received notification I’ve been registered in the FBR prior to the babies birth in October my child will not be eligible (unless we move to Ireland for a bit)?

    2) If my fathers father is who I’m applying through (fathers mother is Irish born as well) was born in Ireland but my father was US born, it sounds like my father is automatically an Irish citizen? If so what is the process to get him properly registered? Is the time frame the same as mine (up to 2 years through San Fran consulate)?

    So then would my child be eligible through my father being considered a citizen or no? (Sounds like no from what I’ve read but wasn’t sure)

    3) Lastly, I saw when filling out my FBR application it asks for birth, marriage and death certificates (where necessary) but I am curious as to what happens if a marriage certificate is not included… I included my great-great grandparents Irish marriage cert, their sons (my great grandfather) and my grandfathers birth and death certificate…so I included my fathers fathers parents Irish marriage cert but not my fathers parents US marriage cert (does it matter since my fathers mother is not Irish thus has nothing to do with my citizenship by descent)? I also didn’t have a marriage certificate for my father as he and my mother were never married…. I included all birth, death and the 2 irish marriage certificates and haven’t heard anything from the consulate about any problems should I assume I’m ok?

    Thanks in advance for your guidance!

    Erin

  41. Bill says:

    Hi Erin, I’ll take a shot at each question:

    1. I think you are right, I have seen the term “born”, not “conceived” 🙂 You might be on to a controversial loophole here!

    2. I believe your father is automatically entitled to be a citizen but he might still have to register in the FBR. I image that is the only way to document it and then be able to get a passport, …

    3. I think you just need 3 valid forms of identification – birth, marriage, and death tend to be naturals but I don’t think they are all required as long as you have 3. I had to read your paragraph a few times to get which people you had documented. I think the process is looking to prove your connection to your father and to his father. I don’t think the great or great-great grandparent information will be relevant, unless it convinces them you have the identities well connected. A little convoluted, but maybe the weight of the data will work in your favor. I suppose there is not much you can do at this point but wait.

    Good luck!

  42. T. Cheshire says:

    Hi Bill. I have a question.
    If your Grandfather was born in A different country (Greece) and your Mother has dual Citizenship does that make you a citizen in that country?
    You see I am 1/2 irish and 1/2 Greek and my Dad (Who is Irish) Didn’t know his father so i do not know him either, which means that the irish Citizenship discussion you were having might be out of question. But my Mother has dual Citizenship in Greece and my Grandfather was born in Greece. So does that mean I can move to Greece already as a Citizen? I have an Education and I can Read, write, and speak Greek and English.

  43. Bill says:

    I really don’t have any experience with citizenship rules in other countries. Regarding your father, if you can’t validate his father’s birth in Ireland or his entry in the foreign birth registry not sure you have any path to attain your dual citizenship with Ireland.

  44. Kristen says:

    Hi Bill:

    Thanks so much for all of the great info! I am in the process of applying to have my name added to the FBR, as my grandmother was born in Sligo. I have all of the required documents and everything is set to go. I have been hearing some stories about the U.S. government starting to prohibit dual citizenship and making people choose between their U.S. citizenship and whatever other citizenship they may hold. I know that the U.S. government doesn’t necessarily highly approve of dual citizenship, but I cannot find anything that says I will put my U.S. citizenship in jeopardy by applying for my Irish citizenship and passport. I was just wondering if you had run into any issues like this, or heard of anyone having this trouble. I am having trouble believing that the U.S. government would change the rules like this, but I just wanted to be sure before I apply!

    Also, when traveling on an Irish passport, could I leave the U.S. with my American passport, and enter an EU country on my Irish passport? I was just wondering how these things work practically.

    Thanks so much!!
    Best,
    Kristen

  45. Bill says:

    Hi Kristen,
    The US doesn’t allow dual citizenship with all countries but I would be surprised if they revoked it with Ireland.
    Regarding using your 2 passports, my understanding is that you must leave and enter the US with your US passport. Beyond that you can choose which to use with other countries. It is VERY convenient when traveling in Europe. Also, countries such as Brazil require a visa for US citizens but not for EU.
    Good luck!

  46. Tim says:

    Hi Bill – Great information, thanks!
    I have had Irish citizenship through my grandfather and the FBR since 2001 and also have an Irish passport. I’m assuming you also have dual US/Irish citizenship so I hope you can help me. My US passport is up for renewal and I’m wondering how to deal with the part of the application that starts with “I have not, since acquiring United States citizenship/nationality been naturalized as a citizen of a foreign state;”
    I have no intention of giving up my US citizenship and need to renew my passport so I’m wondering how to handle this part of the application.
    Thanks for any advice,
    Tim

  47. Bill says:

    Hi Tim,

    First, I’m not a lawyer or any kind of official responder. I think the paragraph says to strike out what’s not true and provide an explanation. Since the US allows for dual citizenship with Ireland, I assume this is all you have to do.

  48. Hi Bill, Where can I get a list of all documents needed to apply for Irish Citizenship? Where do I obtain these documents once I get the needed list? Where do I sent the completed documents and supporting certifications? Expenses associated with each step of the process? Yes! I agree, the above is quite a mouthfull.

    Also, are any shortcuts available by using some of the websites that charge for the dual citizen process? Are these “paid” services worth the cost or can a journeyman complete the process?

    Nice Blog and thanks for your reaponses to my questions.

  49. Bill says:

    Hi Gordon,

    Please see my more recent blog entry at http://bill.sweeney.net/?p=277

    There are links there. My personal opinion is you don’t need help. I did it all myself. You just need to be patient.

    As I recall the cost was about $200 or so depending on how many records you have to request. Getting a passport would be in addition to that.

    Good luck!

  50. Linda White says:

    Both my grandparents were born in Ireland. I have their death certificates and their US Citizenship documents. I don’t have their birth certificates. Where do you suggest I begin my search?

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