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Austrian citizenship for career soldiers in Israel

Michael Decker
Michael Decker

The new Austrian legislation that was passed this September is relevant for thousands of Israelis and Jews around the world. They are busy collecting and preparing the various documents to apply for Austrian citizenship. The legislation regarding citizenship has been expanded but there are certain limitations regarding past or present career soldiers. This article is intended to clarify the issue of obtaining Austrian citizenship for Israelis who have done career army service.

Our law offices specialize in obtaining Austrian passports for Holocaust survivors and their descendants. If you are considering applying for an Austrian passport but are not sure you meet the various requirements, contact us for assistance.

Austrian citizenship for career soldiers

Austrian citizenship, for which applications were officially opened to the public on 1.9.2020, will allow direct descendants of Austrians to hold a European passport. However, it is important to note that not every direct descendant of an Austrian citizen can obtain this citizenship. A descendant who volunteered to serve in the IDF, or any other foreign army, cannot file a request for Austrian citizenship during their period of service. According to the Austrian law, a person who serves as a career soldier or as an officer in the IDF is considered to be serving voluntarily, and therefore their request for Austrian citizenship may be rejected. Such applicants will have to wait until their IDF service is finished before they can apply. However, it is important to note that it is possible to appeal this decision under exceptional circumstances, and the career soldier will be considered by the Austrian authorities based on their specific case.

אזרחות אוסטרית לאנשי קבעOn the other hand, an Israeli citizen who fulfills their mandatory service in the IDF is eligible to apply for and receive Austrian citizenship without difficulty; as they did not volunteer to serve in the IDF, but rather served as part of Israeli civil obligation.

Are soldier-students (Atuda’im) eligible for Austrian citizenship?

Acording to the Austrian legislature, Israelis serving as soldier-students are considered to be serving voluntarily. That is to say – soldier-students are ineligible for Austrian citizenship for the duration of their service. If they already have an Austrian passport, they will lose their citizenship upon completion of their studies as they start their career military service.

Contact us regarding obtaining Austrian citizenship for career soldiers

Our offices in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv specialize in arranging Austrian citizenship. We have German-speaking attorneys in our offices who can arrange the documents for receiving citizenship without problems or difficulties. We will be glad to answer your questions via the phone numbers or email addresses listed below.

Our thanks to Mr. Jonathan Gabrielov for his help in writing this article.

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