Citizenship; application for release from German citizenship
German citizens can apply for release from German citizenship.
Foreign states may expressly make the acquisition of their citizenship dependent on the prior renunciation of the previous citizenship. Germans who wish to acquire citizenship in such a state have the option of relinquishing their German citizenship beforehand when they are released.
A certificate of dismissal is issued as proof of dismissal from German citizenship.
- Assured acquisition of foreign citizenship
- No grounds for refusal
The application for dismissal must be submitted to the competent district administrative authority (district administration office/independent city).
The certificate of dismissal is issued by the competent authority after the prerequisites and reasons for refusal have been checked.
The dismissal from German citizenship becomes effective on the day the dismissal certificate is handed over, which is done by the competent authority. Please note that from this date you will be treated as a foreigner by German authorities. Upon delivery, your German passport and/or identity card will be confiscated.
However, the dismissal will become retroactively invalid if you have not acquired the requested foreign citizenship within one year after the issuance of the dismissal certificate. In this case, you will continue to be considered a German citizen (again). In this case, please contact your competent authority immediately. If you are abroad at this time, this is the respective German mission abroad or directly the Federal Office of Administration.
As an active civil servant, judge, soldier or otherwise in a public-law employment relationship, you cannot be dismissed from German citizenship.
Dismissal from German citizenship may also affect an existing public employment relationship (Beamtenverhältnis), or current or future pension benefits (e.g. retirement pension / pension benefits, orphan's, widow's benefits).
Before submitting your application, please inquire with your employer or your benefits office whether and to what extent you will suffer any (financial) disadvantages as a result of giving up your German citizenship.
Processing may take several weeks.
Application available from the competent authority
Assurance of naturalisation by the foreign state
Since a release from German citizenship is only possible if you do not become permanently stateless as a result, it must be proven that naturalisation in the foreign state is imminent.
Approval of the German family court for applicants who are minors or under the care of an adult
In the case of minors and applicants of full age who are under care, a release from German citizenship is only possible with the approval of the German family court (at the local court). You must apply for and carry out the corresponding procedure at the court on your own.
Certificate of no objection issued by the Military Service Authority for persons subject to compulsory military service in accordance with Section 1 of the Military Service Act (WPflG)
In the case of persons subject to compulsory military service pursuant to Section 1 WPflG, dismissal is only possible if the military service authorities (Bundeswehr Career Centre) have no objections. This applies irrespective of the fact that compulsory military service has been suspended since 01.07.2011. The clearance certificate is therefore currently issued on a regular basis.
Responsible for editing: Bayerisches Staatsministerium des Innern, für Sport und Integration
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