EU citizenship laws

News | Vienna Review | September 2013

A new Austrian citizenship law reform came into effect in August, speeding up the process of becoming a citizen for immigrants with exceptional language proficiency or 3-year-volunteering experience.

Despite growing standardisation, there are significant differences between citizenship laws of EU member states, as the Medien-Servicestelle Neue Österreicher/innen pointed out in a recent study. The principle of Jus Sanguinis, the determination of citizenship by the nationality of one or both parents, is most common. While some EU states have a stricter interpretation of the law – making it only applicable, for example, when the parents are married – newborn babies automatically acquire their parents’ nationality in most member states.

The principle of Jus Soli, meaning the right of anyone born in a country to citizenship, is only used in combination with other factors. Double or multiple citizenships are increasingly accepted in other EU states, but not in Austria.

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