Citizenship by Descent

Citizenship by Descent


Citizenship by descent is sometimes a viable option for individuals looking to obtain citizenship through ancestral routes and receive the benefits of having dual nationality. If you are someone that has family connections in certain countries you may be entitled to apply for citizenship through descent. 

Citizenship by Descent explained 

Citizenship by descent is the legal process where individuals can apply to acquire citizenship of a country provided either their parents, in some cases grandparents and sometimes even great-grandparents were citizens of the country. This legal concept of acquiring citizenship based on the principle of bloodline is referred to as ‘jus sanguinis’.  

Advantages of Dual Citizenship

Having more than one passport can unlock more opportunities such as increased visa-free travel, increased education opportunities, increased business prospects and provide a Plan B safety net in the event of political and economic uncertainty. With dual citizenship one can have increased lifestyle benefits benefiting from another system’s education, healthcare and cultural opportunities. 

Popular Citizenship by Descent Countries 

There are several countries around the world that have citizenship by descent. Each country has different requirements. Some of the most popular countries for citizenship by descent are European countries such as Italy, Ireland and Poland that all have favourable policies making it easier to receive citizenship by descent. These countries passports are sought after as having citizenship from one of these countries means you gain access to the European Union. 

Future Generations to Benefit 

Ability for future generations to benefit: In addition to receiving a citizenship that comes with benefits, in some cases it is possible for the citizenship to be passed down to future generations, securing more opportunities and global mobility for future generations. 

Economic Considerations 

By having dual citizenship you may be entitled to financial advantages. Depending on the country, you may gain access to tax optimization opportunities as well as increased access to banking opportunities. It is important to receive legal advice regarding taxation law. 

Reconnecting with your roots

Citizenship by descent does not mean just getting a passport, but a journey of rediscovering your ancestral heritage. This can lead one to have more understanding of one’s family history, traditions and cultures. 

Application Process 

Each country has a different application process and requirements for citizenship by descent. Oftentimes the application process will involve looking at a person’s family lineage through examining various documents such as birth records, marriage records, and other legal documents. 


While not everyone may be entitled to citizenship by descent, those who are may want to consider applying to receive citizenship through descent. Those who are eligible will have a more global reach, multiple dual nationality advantages which extend beyond just getting a second passport. In an ever changing world, embracing one’s heritage and opening more opportunities for oneself and potentially future generations can be life changing. 

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