A noncommercial collection of information about citizenship, dual citizenship and multiple citizenship

[Please refer to How to Read a Country Entry for help interpreting this material. It was produced prior to March 2001 as part of a US government report entitled Citizenship Laws of the World. The accuracy and depth of these country listings varies significantly, and some information may be incorrect. At best, this page presents only part of the story for a particular country. Additional information for this country may be available in Country Information]


CITIZENSHIP: The basis for Spanish citizenship law is Articles 17 through 26 of the "Codigo Civil" that was modified by Laws 18/1990 and 29/1995.

BY BIRTH: Birth within the territory of Spain does not automatically confer citizenship. The exception is a child born to unknown or stateless parents.

BY DESCENT: Child, at least one of whose parents is a citizen of Spain, regardless of the child's country of birth. Child born of non-Spanish citizen parents, provided at least one of the parents was born in Spain.

BY NATURALIZATION: Spanish citizenship may be acquired upon fulfillment of conditions which vary according to the person involved. Persons with no ties to Spain must reside in the country for at least 10 years. Persons who are former nationals of Portugal, the Philippines, or certain South American countries need only reside for two years. Persons who were born in Spain, who have married a citizen of Spain, or who were born outside of Spain of a mother or father who was originally Spanish, need only reside one year.

DUAL CITIZENSHIP: NOT RECOGNIZED. Exception: Spain has dual citizenship treaties with the following countries: Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Peru, the Dominican Republic, Argentina, and Honduras. Spaniards residing in the above countries do not lose their rights as Spaniards if they adopt the nationality of the country of residence. For all other countries, Spanish citizenship is revoked upon the acquisition of foreign citizenship.


VOLUNTARY: Voluntary renunciation of Spanish citizenship is permitted by law. Submission of a Letter of renunciation and passport is required. Contact the Spanish Embassy for more details and required paperwork.

INVOLUNTARY: The following is grounds for involuntary loss of Spanish citizenship: Person voluntarily acquires citizenship of a country with which Spain does not have a dual citizenship agreement.

ANY QUESTIONS concerning citizenship, or requests for renunciation of citizenship, should be directed to the address below:

Consulate General of Spain 2375 Pennsylvania Ave., NW Washington, DC 20037-1736

Embassy/Consular Telephone: 202-728-2330 Fax: 202-728-2302


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