Losing Dutch Citizenship
Are you a Dutch national, living outside of the Netherlands or possessing multiple nationalities, and worried that you will lose your Dutch citizenship? Keeping your citizenship while abroad depends on your specific circumstances. Cohen, Decker, Pex, Brosh is an Israeli law firm specializing in acquiring and maintaining Dutch citizenship. In this article we explain the different scenarios which may lead to losing one’s Netherlands citizenship.
LOSING YOUR DUTCH CITIZENSHIP
There are two primary ways your Dutch citizenship may be lost. It can be revoked; that is, forcefully taken away by the Dutch government, or it can be lost; which means that you automatically lost your Dutch citizenship. Below, we explain what these terms mean for minor and adult Dutch nationals. A ‘minor’ refers to someone under the age 18, not married and not in a registered relationship. ‘The Netherlands’ or ‘Holland’, refers to the Kingdom of the Netherlands; which consists of the Netherlands, the BES-islands (Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba), and the islands of Aruba, Curaçao, and Sint Maarten.
Losing Dutch nationality – Adults
If you are a Dutch national and you have no other citizenship, you cannot automatically lose your Dutch citizenship. If you are a Dutch national and you have one or more other citizenships, you may run the risk of automatically losing your Dutch citizenship.
Having multiple citizenships is allowed according to Dutch law. However, the following situations will cause automatic loss of your Dutch citizenship.
- Living outside the Netherlands and the European Union for 10 consecutive years.
- Living outside the Netherlands and the European Union and failing to renew your passport before it expires. The Netherlands government recommends renewing your passport three months before the expiration date. For more information on renewing your Dutch passport inside or outside the Netherlands and respective fees, see https://www.government.nl/topics/identification-documents/passports-identity-cards-and-dutch-nationality-certificates/applying-for-a-dutch-passport-abroad . To keep your citizenship without having to pay a passport renewal fee, you may request a declaration of Dutch nationality.
- When you receive another citizenship, you will automatically lose your Dutch citizenship unless: the other citizenship is of the country where you are born and where you lived when you received its citizenship; you lived in that country for 5 consecutive years before you turned 18; you received that citizenship based on marriage. Naturally, if you receive the citizenship of a country that does not allow dual citizenship (e.g, Austria), you will lose your Dutch (or any other) citizenship.
- If you wish to renounce your Dutch citizenship, you may sign a so-called declaration of renunciation. In this declaration you request the Dutch government to take away your Dutch citizenship. Refer to local Netherlands embassy, or contact your municipality if you are living in the Netherlands.
Dutch citizenship revoked – adults
The Dutch government will revoke your Dutch citizenship if you are convicted of a crime against the safety of the Netherlands, such as a war crime or a terror attack. Since March 2017, joining a terrorist organization abroad may also result in revocation of Dutch citizenship, even if you have not been convicted of a terror attack. Your citizenship will also be revoked if you served in the army of a country or state at war with the Netherlands or its allies of your own free will.
Your Dutch citizenship may also be revoked due to the way you handled the application procedure for Dutch nationality. In some cases, applying for a Dutch passport requires you to renounce another citizenship. If you have not done so when required, your Dutch citizenship will be revoked. If you committed fraud when applying for Dutch citizenship (for instance, concealing important facts or signing false declarations), the Dutch government will also revoke your Dutch citizenship.
Losing Dutch citizenship – minors
If only one of your parents has Dutch citizenship and lost it, per the explanation above, you may lose your Dutch citizenship. If both of your parents have Dutch citizenship, you will only lose your citizenship if both your parents do. The “parent” is defined as the one legally acknowledged in the Netherlands, whether biological or adoptive.
In addition, you can lose your Dutch citizenship if your Dutch parent neglects to declare their parenthood over you. In some instances, the court decides that your Dutch parent(s) are not your parent(s) by law, after which your Dutch citizenship will be taken away, provided that you are not left stateless and have the citizenship of another country.
If you yourself wish to renounce your Dutch citizenship, you may sign a so-called declaration of renunciation in which you request the Dutch government to revoke your citizenship. Refer to local Netherlands embassy, or contact your municipality if you are living in the Netherlands.
Dutch nationality revoked – minors
As a minor under the age of 18, you can lose your Dutch citizenship if you, while aged 16 or 17, voluntarily served in the army of a country at war with the Netherlands or its allies, or joined an organization that formed a treat for Dutch national security.
Contact us for information and assistance
Having read this article, you may have realized that your run the risk of losing your Dutch citizenship. Possibly you have already lost your Dutch citizenship and you now wonder if and how you can get it back. Cohen, Decker, Pex, Brosh is an Israeli law firm specializing in losing and regaining Dutch citizenship and we would be happy to answer any questions you have. Contact attorney Joshua Pex in Jerusalem / Tel Aviv for more information on this topic:
: 03-3724722, 055-9781688