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All You Need To Know About Being A Citizen Of Croatia By Ancestry

Croatia is a breathtaking location with a diversified mainland, a stunning archipelago of 1,200 islands, and crystal-clear waters. Croatia is home to the world-renowned coastal town of Dubrovnik and other well-known seaside resorts.

Croatia has one of the most liberal citizenship by ancestry statutes in the world, encouraging members of the Croatian diaspora to return home or to strengthen relationships with their ancestral country.

The procedure of getting Croatian citizenship by ancestry has become simpler due to new legal reforms that went into effect in 2020, and the nation has consequently experienced a considerable increase in ancestry-based citizenship applications in 2021.


If you enjoy nature, you will like Hvar town in Croatia

If you enjoy nature, you will like Hvar town in Croatia


Citizenship in Croatia is mainly governed by the concept of jus sanguinis (right of blood), just like in Italy and Hungary, which implies that your citizenship is determined by the citizenship of the people to whom you are born. In a nutshell, regardless of where the child is born, if one of the parents is Croatian, the child will likewise be granted Croatian citizenship. It's also the same as Croatian citizenship through descent. You may apply for and perhaps get Croatian citizenship if you can trace your ancestry back to a Croatian parent, grandparent, or great-grandparent.

Unfortunately, you cannot trace much farther back in your family tree. Still, it's rather fair, considering that some nations only allow you to go back two or even one generation. However, if you went back farther than your great-grandparents, chances are you wouldn't be able to build a paper trail since records weren't maintained as properly back then.

The Croatian citizenship by ancestry program is unique in granting citizenship to spouses. In other words, you can get Croatian ancestry via your wife or husband. For example, if you discover you have Croatian ancestors and apply for citizenship by ancestry, your spouse will be able to apply with you. He or she might have no ties to the nation of Croatia and nevertheless get a Croatian passport.


Related content: Ireland Citizenship By Ancestry


Traditional houses in Rovinj, Croatia

Traditional houses in Rovinj, Croatia


Croatian citizenship by ancestry, like many other nations, may be obtained after proving eligibility. That implies your responsibility to gather all documentation proving your ancestor's connection to the country and Croatian nationality.

It is preferable to complete this task before beginning the application process. If you don't have enough evidence to back up your application, you may be setting yourself up for a lengthy procedure that ends in rejection.

To prevent this, contact a legal professional to determine if your Croatian citizenship application has sufficient proof to be authorized by the Croatian Ministry of Interior.

Documents you will need to provide with your application for citizenship by ancestry;

  • A copy of your valid identification.
  • Application form.
  • A copy of your birth certificate.
  • Curriculum Vitae (CV) (written in Croatian). This document should contain information about your marital status, children, parents, and any relatives who may have obtained Croatian citizenship in the past, in addition to your employment status, education, and location.
  • Your ancestor's marriage and citizenship certificate (Domovnica).
  • Documents proving your ancestry to your Croatian forefathers. This might contain their birth certificate(s) and the birth certificates of all your ancestors (Remember that they do not all have to be Croatian nationals, as long as you have at least one Croatian in your family tree).
  • The explanation for your application for Croatian citizenship; It's a good opportunity to explain why your ancestors left the nation and why obtaining Croatian citizenship is essential to you.

It is also critical that your documents match the official standards:

  • All documents must be original;
  • They should be apostilled;
  • They should also be translated and notarized.

You can apply for Croatian citizenship by descent in Croatia if you have a temporary or permanent stay there. Meanwhile, if you reside overseas, you must find the closest diplomatic mission, consulate, or embassy and apply there. It is worth mentioning that the application period is not set and varies depending on the circumstances. A fully completed application should take around a year to process, although it may take longer in exceptional situations.

Finally, as of January 1, 2020, you are no longer obliged to take the language and culture test to get Croatian citizenship. It was formerly a requirement for all applicants claiming citizenship, even those applying based on ancestry. Needless to say, many individuals were turned off since they couldn't speak a word of Croatian, much alone understand its customs. If you were one of those persons, you may now apply for Croatian citizenship much more quickly.


Related content: The Basics Of How To Get A Second Passport Or A Second Residency


Togir, Split, Dalmatia region of Croatia

Togir, Split, Dalmatia region of Croatia


Croatia is more than just a lovely vacation spot. It is a nation rich in history, cuisine, and people. Having unfettered access to the European Union is one of the most important benefits of having Croatian citizenship.

As Croatia is a member of the EU, you can travel to other EU nations with just your passport or ID. Furthermore, while applying for Croatian citizenship by ancestry, you do not have to relinquish your existing citizenship, which is a huge benefit! When you gain dual citizenship, you have more alternatives and protection, and Croatia is a pretty secure location to reside. When things get unclear, you always have somewhere to go.

There isn't much to say about the drawbacks of having Croatian citizenship. It's usually a good idea to double-check your tax situation if you have another citizenship. To avoid disappointment, you should evaluate your financial status before applying.


Related content: Spain’s Citizenship By Ancestry


Zagreb, Croatia

Zagreb, Croatia


As a result of your great-grandparents, grandparents, or parents, you may be eligible for Croatian citizenship by ancestry. It's a fantastic citizenship to have since it comes with a valuable travel document that grants you visa-free entry to 169 countries. The process of claiming citizenship by ancestry may be lengthy and difficult, but it is certainly rewarding. If you don't want to become engaged and would prefer someone else do it for you, feel free to contact us. We'll help you assess your eligibility for Croatian citizenship, walk you through the application process, and then present you with a freshly pressed Croatian passport.


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Mikkel Thorup

Written by Mikkel Thorup

Mikkel Thorup is the world’s most sought-after expat consultant. He focuses on helping high-net-worth private clients to legally mitigate tax liabilities, obtain a second residency and citizenship, and assemble a portfolio of foreign investments including international real estate, timber plantations, agricultural land and other hard-money tangible assets. Mikkel is the Founder and CEO at Expat Money™, a private consulting firm started in 2017. He hosts the popular weekly podcast, the Expat Money Show, and wrote the definitive #1-Best Selling book Expat Secrets - How To Pay Zero Taxes, Live Overseas And Make Giant Piles Of Money, and his second book: Expats Guide On Moving To Mexico.

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