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Dual Nationality

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US-flagSection 101(a) (22) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) states the “national of the United States” as a citizen of the United States or an immigrant who owes permanent allegiance to the United States. Dual citizenship concept presupposes a person to be a citizen of the U.S. and of another country at the same time.

Each country has its own laws, some countries don’t give their citizens a right to obtain two citizenships at a time. For information on dual nationality from the point of view of another country, please contact that country’s embassy or consulate. To receive the information about the dual nationality from the point of view of another country one should consult the embassy of a particular country.

Speaking about the United States, dual citizenship had previously been banned in the United States, but in 1967 the US Supreme Court struck down most laws forbidding dual citizenship. So, now its law does not require a person to choose one citizenship or another. A citizen of U.S. who was granted another citizenship doesn’t take risk to lose U.S. nationality. To renounce the U.S. citizenship, a person should apply for the foreign citizenship with intention to lose the U.S. nationality.

Sometimes a person may have double nationality due to the operation of different laws which is not their personal choice. Thus, a person born in a foreign country automatically obtain both U.S. citizenship and a national of the country of birth. The second nationality may be also obtained by marriage.

Hence, dual nationals owe allegiance to both countries, obeying the laws of both the U.S. and foreign country.

Those people who have dual citizenship and plan to leave or enter the United States, must use a U.S. passport to enter and leave the United States.