Renouncing your current nationality
To become a Dutch citizen, you must be prepared to renounce your nationality. This means that you give up your current nationality.
How do I renounce my nationality?
If none of the exceptions apply to you, you will have to give up your existing nationality. For most countries, you will not be able to give up your original nationality until you already have Dutch citizenship.
Therefore, upon submitting your application for naturalisation you sign a declaration. This declaration states that you are prepared to renounce your existing nationality. After having become a Dutch citizen, you renounce your original nationality. This is called a renunciation procedure. You start this procedure with the authorities of your country of origin. It is often possible to do this at the consulate or embassy of your country in the Netherlands.
When the renunciation procedure has been completed, you will receive an official declaration from the authorities of your country. You send this declaration to the IND. If you do not renounce your current nationality even though you are required to, the IND may revoke your Dutch citizenship.
When do I not have to renounce my nationality?
There are various situations in which you do not have to renounce your nationality. You do not, for example, have to give up your nationality in one of the following situations:
- You automatically lose your original nationality when becoming a Dutch citizen. Please check here if this applies to your nationality (page only available in Dutch).
- Your country’s legislation does not allow you to give up your nationality (page only available in Dutch).
- You are married to or are the registered partner of a Dutch citizen.
- You are a minor, meaning younger than 18 years.
- You have an asylum residence permit.
- Upon submitting the application for naturalisation you are living in the Kingdom of the Netherlands. You are also born in the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
- You are a national of a state that is not recognised by the Netherlands.
- You will have to pay a large sum of money to the authorities in your country of origin in order to renounce your nationality.
- You will lose certain rights when giving up your current nationality. You stand to lose a lot of money, for example, because the laws of succession no longer apply to you.
- You have to fulfil (or buy out) your military service before being able to renounce your nationality.
Is your situation not listed? Or would you like more information? Please contact the IND.
Loss and the revoking of Dutch nationality
You can lose the Dutch nationality in different ways. Loss is sometimes automatically, but your Dutch nationality may also be revoked. Sometimes there is an exception and you can still keep your Dutch nationality. Or you can prevent the loss of your Dutch nationality. Both adults and children can lose their Dutch nationality.
Loss of Dutch nationality: adults
In Dutch nationality law you are an adult when you are 18 years or older. Or you are younger than 18 and your are married to, in a registered partnership or a durable relationship.
You lose the Dutch nationality in the following situations:
- You voluntarily take another nationality. By voluntarily taking another nationality you will automatically lose your Dutch nationality. This applies when you live abroad, but also when you live in the Netherlands. You will not lose your Dutch nationality when one of the following situations applies to you:
- you were born in the country of the other nationality. And if you lived there when you got this other nationality;
- before you became an adult, you lived for at least 5 consecutive years in the country of the other nationality;
- you are married to or have a registered partnership with someone who has the nationality you voluntarily take.
- You make a declaration of renunciation (of your Dutch nationality). This can be done at your municipality or the Dutch embassy in the country where you live.
- You have dual citizenship. And you have lived for at least 10 consecutive years outside the Kingdom of the Netherlands and the European Union. The following situations form an exception to this rule:
- You have lived in the Kingdom of the Netherlands or the European Union for at least 1 of these 10 years.
- You have received a new Dutch passport or a declaration of Dutch citizenship (link only available in Dutch)on time. On time means before the 10 years are over. From the day you receive the passport or declaration, a new period of 10 years begins. A mere application for a passport or declaration before the end of the 10-year period is not in time. You must have actually received the passport or the declaration.
Loss through revocation
You can lose your Dutch citizenship because the Dutch Government revokes it. This can happen in the following situations:
- You, as an adult, after your naturalisation, have not done everything possible to renounce your other citizenship with your own authorities.
- You committed fraud during your naturalisation process or option procedure. For example, fraud that involves your identity. You commit fraud if you make a false declaration, deceive or conceal important facts. And you became a Dutch citizen as a result of it. You would not have received the Dutch nationality if you had not commited fraud.
- You are convicted of a crime against the safety of the Kingdom. For example, a war crime or a crime with a terrorist motive. These are actions that seriously harm the interests of the Kingdom.
- You voluntarily serve in the armed forces of a state. And these armed forces fight against the Netherlands or one of the Dutch allies.
Loss through revocation due to membership in a terrorist organisation
You lose your Dutch citizenship after a conviction for a terrorist offence in the Netherlands. As of March 1, 2017 you also lose your Dutch citizenship if you join a terrorist organisation abroad .
Loss of Dutch nationality: minors
In Dutch nationality law you are a minor when you are younger than 18 years old.
Are you younger than 18 years old, but are you married, in a registered partnership or a durable relationship? Than by law you are considered an adult.
Minors lose Dutch nationality in the following cases:
- The minor becomes the child of a person with a non-Dutch nationality through acknowledgement, legitimation, adoption or judicial ruling of parenthood. The minor receives the nationality of the foreign parent or already has this nationality.
- The minor makes a declaraction of renunciation and has the non-Dutch nationality of his father or mother.
- The father or mother receives another nationality and the minor shares in receiving this nationality or already has this other nationality.
- The father or mother loses the Dutch nationality.
- The minor receives the same nationality as his father or mother.
Minors can also lose Dutch citizenship in other ways.
No loss of Dutch nationality
A minor does not lose his Dutch nationality in the following situations:
- Another parent has the Dutch nationality.
- The minor is born and lives in the country of which he receives the nationality. This does not apply when the minor has made a declaration of renunciation of the Dutch nationality.
- The minor lives or has lived for at least five years continuously in the country of which het receives the nationality. This does not apply when the minor has made a declaration of renunciation of the Dutch nationality.
There are other possible situations where the minor does not lose his Dutch nationality.
Loss through revocation
A minor can also lose his Dutch nationality because the Dutch government revokes it. This is possible in the following situations:
- The minor is 16 or 17 years old and voluntarily serves in the armed forces of a foreign state. And these armed forces fight against the Netherlands or 1 of the Dutch allies.
- The minor is 16 or 17 years old and has joined an organisation that participates in a national or international armed conflict and therefore is a threat to Dutch national security.