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German Law/German visa - Indian citizen


My client was born in Germany but moved to India soon after her birth and acquired an Indian Passport and citizenship.  Her husband is an Indan citizen too.  When she applied for a visa, to visit Germany she was informed that she is a German citizen by operation of law and that she should apply for a German Passport and travel. But under Indian law, she would lose her INdian Citizenshiip if she acquires a foreign passport. (Isn't that the legal position in Germany too?). I feel that the German Consulate's interpretation is incorrect.  What's your opinion? What's the way out for her? Thanks,

You are right about the general rule in German law, but it depends how your client acquired Indian citizenship.

§ 25 I StAG (Staatsangehörigkeitsgesetz) states that a German citizen will lose her German citizenship if she (or her parents or guardians on her behalf) will apply for and receive the citizenship of another country.
So if your client applied for Indian citizenship (or her parents did for her), then she would have lost her German citizenship. However, if she had already acquired Indian citizenship by birth (e.g. if India uses ius sanguinis and her parents are/were Indian), then she did not need to later apply for it and she would not lose German citizenship if she applied for an Indian passport.

I don't know what the risks to your client are in India by doing so, but if the German Consulate says that she is a German citizen, I would recommend applying for the German passport.
Alternatively, if she does not want that, she can of course renounce the German citizenship (§ 26 I StAG).
If the German Consulate continues to be complicated, she can also apply for a Schengen visa with any other of the Schengen consulates and can then use a French, Italian, Lithuanian or ay other visa to travel to Germany.

Andreas Moser

German Law

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Andreas Moser


Extensive experience in international family law, especially international child abductions and child custody cases. All other areas of German law as well: constitutional law, criminal law, business and contract law, immigration law, inheritance law, and so on.


Lawyer in Germany from 2002 to 2009. Lawyer for US Army JAG Corps before. Bar-certified specialisation in family law and in administrative law. Articles and lectures about international and domestic family law.


2000 Law Degree from University of Regensburg, Germany 2002 admitted to the bar (until 2009) 2013 MA Philosophy at the Open University, UK

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