Does My Child Automatically Inherit My Citizenship?
If you are a U.S. citizen and you have had or adopted a child overseas, it is important to understand that there are specific measures that you need to take in order to ensure that your child can obtain the citizenship to which they are entitled. If a child has at least one parent who is a U.S. citizen, there is a good chance that they can inherit the parent’s citizenship. This is known as derivative citizenship. Although the right to citizenship is automatic, there are still actions that must be taken. For this reason, it is important never to wait until the last minute and consult with an experienced immigration attorney as soon as possible to ensure all requirements are met.
Derivative Citizenship for Children Outside of the U.S.
If you are a U.S. citizen and have a child that lives or primarily stays outside of the United States, it is still possible to get them citizenship. However, they just have at least one parent or grandparent who lives in the U.S. enough to meet the physical presence requirement. The child also must come to the United States in order for the naturalization process to be approved. In addition to these requirements, the child must be under 18 years of age, and should be in the custody of a U.S. citizen even if they are living overseas. Many times, this process is used for U.S. couples who are adopting children overseas. Additional complications can arise when it comes to international adoptions, however, so it is always important to consult with an experienced attorney before taking action on your own to ensure that all necessary requirements are met and that no costly errors are made that could unnecessarily delay the process.