Dual citizenship in New Zealand
Welcome to the website of the Federal Foreign Office
The number of applications to the Federal Office of Administration is currently very high. Many people are currently interested in dual citizenship (e.g. due to Brexit). The processing time for the retention permit is approx. 12-14 months, and the trend is increasing. Status: January 2021
German citizens who apply for another nationality automatically lose their German nationality by law. If you want to take New Zealand citizenship and keep German citizenship, you need to apply for a “retention permit”.
A leaflet on the loss of German citizenship can be found here
What is a retention permit?
If you want to take New Zealand citizenship and keep German citizenship, you need to apply for a “retention permit”. If your application is approved, you will receive a certificate of approval to retain German citizenship (certificate of retention).
You can find summary information here on the leaflet
When is the retention permit effective?
Just one handed out and at the time (day) of naturalization valid
Retention permit protects against the loss of German citizenship.
Which does ______________ mean handed out?
The retention permit will only take effect once you have actually received the certificate.
The issue of the certificate or the message that the certificate is on the way is not sufficient.
If New Zealand citizenship is acquired before you “hold” the document, you lose German citizenship. It is therefore safer not to apply for naturalization until you have already been given the permit.
Which does ______________ mean valid?
The retention permit is usually limited to 2 years. It is effective up to the date shown in the certificate and then loses its validity. If you are naturalized during this time, you do not need a further certificate. If you are naturalized in the host country after the validity date has expired, you will lose your German citizenship.
Should your naturalization be delayed, please apply informally in good time (approx. 3 months before expiry) for a new retention permit (= certificate of affiliation) in order to avoid the loss of the German
What is required for the retention application?
Please also submit a single copy of the application and all documents!
For retention it is crucial that
• You continue to have such close ties to Germany that the retention of the
German citizenship is justified when assuming foreign citizenship;
• You explain in a credible manner why you want to acquire foreign citizenship in your
specific situation is advantageous or avoids or eliminates significant disadvantages
• the other state allows dual citizenship.
What is required for the retention application?
- Proof of possession of German citizenship
Please provide information about your current German documents (e.g. German identity card, German passport, last nationality card) and attach them, when applying by post, as certified copies at. Copies can be certified by the embassy or an honorary consul or a New Zealand notary ("Notary public"). A directory of New Zealand notaries can be found at the New Zealand Society of Notaries. B. Justice of the Peace (“Justices of the Peace”), lawyers (“solicitors” / “barristers”) and / or through the offices of New Zealand courts (“Registrars”) are not sufficient.
Please attach this to your application.
- Proof of the right of residence in the country of residence
Please provide information about your residence permit in the host country and include notarized
Copies * of your current permanent residence as well as your first permanent residence
-Information on continuing ties to Germany
* applies to postal applications; a simple copy is sufficient for a personal visit to the embassy or an honorary consul
With a personal interview A simple copy is sufficient at the embassy or an honorary consulate. In Wellington, you can submit your records for retention Monday through Friday without an appointment from 10:45 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.
The application for retention can only be approved:
If the continuing ties to Germany as well as the individual disadvantage are proven with evidence. Therefore, please provide information about:
• Your German language skills (copies of certificates, training certificates, university degree)
• Your relationships with close relatives in Germany (name and address of the persons concerned, brief description of the type and extent of the contacts)
• if applicable: information about professional, business and other relationships with Germany.
Please attach a single copy of the documents, e.g.
- if you own real estate in Germany (copy of the land register extract or the most recent land tax assessment)
- if you are drawing a pension or are entitled to a pension in Germany (copy of the last pension notification or the last notification).
Information on the reasons for acquiring the desired nationality
Germans who have been in New Zealand for more than 20 years without interruption are assumed to have a pronounced, final need for integration. This also applies to Germans aged 60 and over who have been in New Zealand for more than ten years. For these people, the only thing that matters is that close ties to Germany continue to exist.
The application must show, which is why, despite the existing ties to Germany, you are dependent on acquiring New Zealand citizenship. You should therefore provide information about specific relief / concessions in the case of naturalization or the avoidance / elimination of specific disadvantages
• in training or studying
• in professional practice
• when awarding scholarships or grants
• in business relationships (e.g. for public administration contracts)
• when buying / selling real estate
• in inheritance law
• in the right of residence, insofar as the burdens / disadvantages do not affect foreigners in general
(e.g. concrete disadvantages when the spouse joins, but not the lack of eligibility to vote in
- the opportunity to apply for political offices
• other specific advantages for you in the event of naturalization
and attach a single copy of the relevant evidence.
We will only contact you in the event that additional documents or information are required to process the application.
The forms for the application and the power of attorney as well as summary information can be found here:
Application for retention for applicants aged 16 and over
Application for retention for applicants up to 16 years of age
Application for retention for applicants who apply together as a family
Form for a power of attorney for collection by an authorized third party
How and where can you submit the application?
You can submit the application for retention in person at the Embassy in Wellington (without an appointment, Mon - Fri 10:45 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.) or at the honorary consuls (by telephone arrangement)
If you do not hand in your application in person but send it in by post, the copy of your passport and the copy of your residency permit must be certified.Note that only one copy of your passport and residency permit is required Notary Public(not a lawyer or JP !!!) can be certified.
All other documents can be submitted unauthorized in simple form. A Further Please send a copy of the application and all documents to the Embassy in Wellington.
What happens after the application is submitted?
The embassy will check your information and documents and send a statement to the
Forward the Federal Office of Administration in Cologne for a decision. Upon receipt of the decision, you will be notified in writing by the embassy without being asked and with the notification you will receive instructions for the payment of the fees to the Federal Office of Administration.
The number of applications to the Federal Office of Administration is currently very high. Many people are currently interested in dual citizenship (e.g. Brexit). The processing time is currently approx. 12-14 months, and the trend is increasing.
What are the fees and when do they have to be paid?
The fee is charged with the decision on the application. Please do not make any payment when submitting the application.
The fee for the retention certificate is generally 255 euros for every adult applicant and 51 euros for every minor child (up to the age of 18). Upon receipt of the decision, the embassy will send you an email request for payment with instructions for the transfer to the Federal Office of Administration. Payments through the embassy are not possible.
PLEASE TAKE NOTE OF THE FOLLOWING GUIDELINES
You're welcome absolutely indicate the intended use (see attachment) and your name.
Tip: If you make the payment via a German account, you will incur lower costs. You can also have relatives or friends in Germany pay the fee. It is best to send the payment receipt to the embassy by email (scan, screenshot, etc.).
METHODS FOR PROOF OF PAYMENT
- Please send proof of payment by email or post to the embassy (mandatory in front Collection from the honorary consul).
- Bring it with you for personal collection.
- Give to the authorized person.
Collection / delivery of the retention document
COLLECTION AT THE EMBASSY (please bring your passport)
- Personally: Without prior appointment, Monday to Friday between 10.45 a.m. and 12.00 p.m.
- From an authorized third party: please use the form for a power of attorney
DELIVERED BY HONORARY CONSUL in AUCKLAND OR CHRISTCHURCH
Please send "z.Hd. Rk-1 “an unaddressed envelope to the embassy in Wellington (Track & Trace or courier for security). The embassy will use this envelope to send your certificate of retention to the honorary consul. Neither the embassy nor the honorary consuls send a confirmation of this.
Please make an appointment for collection:
Auckland - Honorary Consul Erich Bachmann (09-375 87 18)
Christchurch - Honorary Consul Dr. Christian Riffel (03-369 34 73)
Validity of the retention document
Two years from the date of issue. If you accept New Zealand citizenship after this period has expired, German citizenship will automatically be lost.
Certificate of affiliation
The application for a renewed retention permit (so-called affiliation certificate) is now only possible with a completed application form (see below). The Wellington Embassy does not need to be involved in this process. The application for a renewed retention permit can be sent directly to the BVA by post.
The full fee of € 255 is charged for the affiliation certificate.
Application for membership certificate to be retained for applicants aged 16 and over
Application for membership certificate for applicants up to 16 years of age
Application for membership certificate to be retained for applicants who apply together as a family
What should be considered after completing the procedure?
After the expiry of the period of validity, the granted retention permit serves as proof that the German citizenship has not been lost despite acquiring a foreign citizenship. You should therefore keep the certificate of retention together with the New Zealand certificate of naturalization permanently and securely. This evidence can also be of valuable help for future generations (e.g. for your children / grandchildren) if German citizenship has to be proven.
The certificate of retention and the certificate of naturalization should be presented with your next passport application.
You will find a summary of questions about multiple nationality on the leaflet
Please also note the information on data protection regulations
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