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Austrian Passport

Michael Decker
Michael Decker

You and your children can benefit greatly by obtaining an Austrian passport for descendants of Holocaust survivors under the new legislation. This passport is considered one of the strongest in the world thanks to Austria’s developed economy and broad international political influence.

At our offices of attorneys for emigration to Austria in Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, you will find a German-speaking department which is thoroughly familiar with the Austrian legal system and its laws. Given the complexity of the new foundational law and its many amendments, extensive familiarity with the various legal bodies is essential to ensure that the client is eligible and that his or her family members will indeed succeed in obtaining the desired passport within a short amount of time.

Austrian passport

Issuing an Austrian passport for descendants of Holocaust survivors

Following the new amendment of the Austrian House of Representatives, legislated in September 2018 and implemented in September 2019, hundreds of thousands of descendants of Holocaust survivors, victims of persecution by the Nazi regime, or those who left the country during the 1930s, will be able to obtain Austrian citizenship. As part of the reconciliation policy in Austria, the descendants will be able to pass on the citizenship to future generations without any restrictions.

The new legislation enables all future passport holders to maintain their current citizenships, whether that citizenship is Israeli, American, Canadian, etc. This is in contrast to the previous situation in which those who received Austrian citizenship were required to renounce their former citizenship.

It is important to note that no tests are required for those eligible for Austrian citizenship as descendants of Holocaust survivors, such as tests on language, culture, history, etc. Nor is there a requirement for a comprehensive interview in German at the embassy. Moreover, distant descendants will be able to obtain citizenship even if their eligible parents choose not to obtain it themselves.

Another important point regards the descendants of those who left countries that were protectorates of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, such as Romania, Ukraine, Hungary, etc. Those people are eligible on condition that their ancestors lived within the currently recognized Austrian borders, as established in 1918, and left the country of Austria between 1933 and 1955. It is important to note that these ancestors could be either Austrian citizens or those who were stateless.

Another crucial point that was added to the law, and is perhaps the crown jewel of the recent innovations in the law, concerns women and their descendants. Under the new law, anyone who is a descendant of a female Austrian is eligible for Austrian citizenship on this basis, even if the father (grandfather, great-grandfather) was not an Austrian citizen or resident. This represents the resolution of a gender problem that, for many years, restricted an enormous number of those eligible for citizenship.

How can you prove eligibility?

It is important to explain that for a victim of persecution to prove that persecution, it suffices to present an official document from Austria demonstrating some kind of civil tie to the country. Since every Jew who left the country of Austria between 1933 and 1955 is legally defined as a victim of persecution, basic documents such as a birth certificate, a divorce certificate, a certificate of name change, etc., are considered solid, adequate proof. After that, one is required to demonstrate the direct family connection between the applicant and the persecution victim, by simple, basic documents which prove a direct family tie.

Advantages of an Austrian passport

·         The possibility to live and work in EU countries – Scandinavian countries such as Sweden, Finland, or Denmark, or Western bloc countries such as Holland, Germany, Belgium, Italy, France, etc.

·         The possibility to study under full or partial subsidy in selected academic institutions.

·         The possibility of a “free pass” between the European Schengen Pact countries. This includes most of the countries in Europe.

·         The possibility to start a business or invest in real estate.

·         The possibility of consular protection throughout the world as a citizen of the European Union.

·         The possibility to enter attractive countries that cannot be entered with an Israeli passport – countries like Qatar, Kuwait, Venezuela, Indonesia, Cuba, etc.

·         Work possibilities for young people who dream of working abroad as part of the Working Holiday Visa program. This program enables young adults between the ages of 18-30 to work in attractive countries outside Europe as well, countries like Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and South Korea, as well as Hong Kong and Taiwan.

Issuing an Austrian passport in an attorney’s office for Austrian citizenship

Our office provides comprehensive legal services for everything regarding issuing Austrian citizenship for Holocaust survivors and their descendants. Let our experts explain and clarify the various relevant laws in the Austrian legislation. Our office deals with obtaining both European and North American citizenships. For additional information, contact us at the telephone numbers below.

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