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Acquisition and Loss of Nationality|Volume 2: Country Analyses

Acquisition and Loss of Nationality|Volume 2: Country Analyses: Policies and Trends in 15 European Countries

Rainer Bauböck
Eva Ersbøll
Kees Groenendijk
Harald Waldrauch
Copyright Date: 2006
Pages: 588
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  • Book Info
    Acquisition and Loss of Nationality|Volume 2: Country Analyses
    Book Description:

    Nationality and citizenship have been subjects of stormy policy debates in many EU countries in recent years. Concerns over the integration of immigrants, but also attempts to forge links with emigrants, have led to changes in the laws regulating loss and acquisition of nationality and citizenship. This title outlines the research conducted by a team of 30 researchers into the nationality laws and their implementation in 15 EU member states. ""> Volume 2 of this study presents detailed studies of each country's nationality laws, their historical background and current provisions. It is a companion to "">volume 1 which contains comparative analyses based on a novel methodology that permits a detailed comparison how nationality can be acquired or lost across all 15 countries. The results show divergent trends towards liberalization in some countries and new restrictions of access to nationality in others. "">Volume 1 also examines the impact of international and European law, presents statistical data on naturalisation and assesses administrative practices. Although the European Union has no formal competence in regulating nationality, the nationality laws of member states are linked to each other via the common citizenship of the Union. Member States should therefore agree on common norms for their nationality laws. Volume 1 contains detailed policy recommendations based on the idea that stakeholders in the political community should be given access to nationality. In addition to the two volumes, detailed statistics and further comparative analyses of legal regulations of nationality are available at ""> Volume 1 & 2 are also available as a set, "">click here form more information. This is the most comprehensive comparative study of the legal status of nationality so far and it will become an indispensable source of reference for further research. For more information see: ""> This title is available in the OAPEN Library -

    eISBN: 978-90-485-0446-6
    Subjects: Sociology

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. 1-4)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. 5-8)
  3. Tables
    (pp. 9-10)
  4. Preface
    (pp. 11-18)
    Bernhard Perchinig and Rainer Bauböck
  5. 1 Austria
    (pp. 19-62)
    Dilek Çinar and Harald Waldrauch

    The acquisition and loss of Austrian nationality are regulated by the Federal Law on Austrian Nationality 1985,¹ which was last amended in 2005; the new provisions came into force in March 2006.² Because the period of investigation of this book ends with mid 2005, this chapter primarily covers the legal status after the amendment to the nationality law in 1998, which came into force in January 1999.³ Nevertheless, the conclusions contain a summary of the current legal status as of March 2006. The Nationality Law of 1985 is based on five principles (Mussger, Fessler, Szymanski & Keller 2001: 26ff). First, according...

  6. 2 Belgium
    (pp. 63-104)
    Marie-Claire Foblets and Sander Loones

    The provisions of the Code of Belgian Nationality¹ regarding the grounds for acquisition or loss of nationality constitute a complex legal puzzle. With a view to offering as clear an analysis of this puzzle as possible, we will focus in this introduction on the main modes of acquisition and loss of Belgian nationality today, and on the principles on which the logical and internal consistency of the legislation is based. In the second part we provide the historical background and list the main developments up to 1984 with regard to nationality law in Belgium (sect. 2.2). We will also discuss...

  7. 3 Denmark
    (pp. 105-148)
    Eva Ersbøll

    Unlike many other European countries, Denmark did not reform its nationality law at the beginning of the new millennium, and Denmark has not followed the European trends in nationality law of facilitating naturalisation, extending entitlement to nationality, accepting multiple nationality and introducing ius soli elements into its nationality law. Far from providing for easier access to nationality, Denmark has made the conditions for the acquisition of nationality stricter over the last six years. Existing nationality legislation is generally based on Danish nationality traditions.

    Danish nationality law has its origin in political conditions, which go back to the eighteenth century. Foreigners,...

  8. 4 Finland
    (pp. 149-186)
    Jessica Fagerlund

    In January 2003, the city of Turku, honoured, as the first city in Finland, the new Finnish nationals by inviting them to a nationality party (Anon 2005). This celebration can be seen as an effort to strengthen the feeling of kinship for the new Finnish nationals, and the intention was to make a tradition out of this celebration. This comes as a timely encouragement for all those immigrants wishing to become naturalised in Finland at a time when Finland is introducing somewhat stricter requirements for the acquisition of Finnish nationality.

    Finland adopted a new Nationality Act in 2003. The main...

  9. 5 France
    (pp. 187-212)
    Patrick Weil and Alexis Spire

    France is frequently portrayed as having a strong integrative national identity forged through its revolutionary experience.

    French nationality law as it currently exists was essentially established by 1889. Since then French legislation has been a mixture of ius soli and ius sanguinis. Ius sanguinis was a modern tradition invented by France, and it diffused across continental Europe during the nineteenth century. However, despite this strong tradition of ius sanguinis, France was also the first country of immigration in Europe, which led to the reincorporation of ius soli in order to attribute nationality to children of immigrants, even against their will....

  10. 6 Germany
    (pp. 213-252)
    Kay Hailbronner

    The new millennium marked a major change in German nationality law. The nationality law of 1913 (Reichs- und Staatsangehörigkeitsgesetz), valid from the German Empire through the ‘Third Reich’ and the Federal Republic – which was subject to many changes and amendments – was replaced by a new nationality law, the Nationality Act,¹ which entered into force on 1 January 2000. The new nationality law was the result of a highly controversial debate between the major political parties in 1998, preceding federal parliamentary elections. The nationality law (Staatsangehörigkeitsgesetz) – although in many respects still based upon the provisions of the law...

  11. 7 Greece
    (pp. 253-288)
    Dimitris Christopoulos

    Greek nationality law is based on the principle of origin. Ius sanguinis, i.e., the automatic acquisition of the father’s nationality at birth, irrespective of where the child was born, is already identified in the first article of the Code of Greek Nationality in 1856: ‘The child of a Greek male [or female] acquires Greek nationality at birth.’¹

    The most significant insertion ever registered in the Greek nationality law is the addition, in 1984, of the word ‘Greek female’ to the aforementioned article, following the modernisation of the provisions of the Greek Civil Code regarding the implementation of gender equality.


  12. 8 Ireland
    (pp. 289-328)
    John Handoll

    Seen from the Irish constitutional perspective, persons born in the island of Ireland – whether in the 26 counties of Ireland or the six counties in the North (potentially part of a united Ireland) – to a parent who is an Irish citizen or entitled to become one, have the entitlement and birthright to be part of the Irish nation. This entitlement is also enjoyed by those otherwise qualified in accordance with law to be Irish citizens.

    Since the establishment of the Irish Free State in 1922, Irish nationality policy and law has had to address the mechanisms of protracted...

  13. 9 Italy
    (pp. 329-366)
    Marta Arena, Bruno Nascimbene and Giovanna Zincone

    Up to 2006 acquisition of the Italian nationality has been mostly rooted in family relationships. Family is one of the models of citizenship identified by Michael Walzer (1983) in his well-known typology. In the ‘family’ model, nationality and citizenship are reserved for members belonging to the national community by descent. In the Italian case, family ties in general, not just descent, play the main role as gatekeepers to nationality.Ius sanguinis(acquisition by descent) andius conubii(acquisition by marriage) are the cornerstones of the 1992 Act, which represents the main current legislation on the subject. By comparison with prior...

  14. 10 Luxembourg
    (pp. 367-390)
    François Moyse, Pierre Brasseur and Denis Scuto

    The main Luxembourgish legislation concerning the acquisition and loss of nationality is the law of 22 January 1968 about the Luxembourgish nationality (nationalité luxembourgeoise) (herafter ‘LNL’). This law has been revised five times by the following laws:

    – Law of 26 June 1970

    – Law of 20 June 1977

    – Law of 11 December 1986 (which introduces the equality between genders)

    – Law of 24 July 2001

    – Law of 1 August 2001

    The Luxembourg jurisprudence and regulations on this subject are scarce.

    The overall importance of determining the Luxembourg nationality lies in the fact that it confers to the...

  15. 11 The Netherlands
    (pp. 391-434)
    Ricky van Oers, Betty de Hart and Kees Groenendijk

    The first Dutch Nationality Act of 1892 introduced the principle of nationality acquisitioniure sanguini, thereby putting a stop to the possibility of acquiring Dutch nationality by mere birth on Dutch territory. As of 1 July 1893¹, Dutch nationality was acquired through birth from a Dutch father. This was not the only gender discriminatory provision in Dutch nationality law. It also provided for automatic acquisition of Dutch nationality for foreign women marrying Dutch men and for loss of Dutch nationality in case a Dutch woman would marry a foreigner. Both regulations were abolished in 1964. It was, however, not until...

  16. 12 Portugal
    (pp. 435-476)
    Maria Ioannis Baganha and Constança Urbano de Sousa

    The Nationality Law in force until 2006² foresees a mixed system for acquisition of nationality at birth, placing greater emphasis on a ius sanguinis concept of nationhood to the detriment of an imperial tradition of ius soli. It therefore goes against the Portuguese tradition of favouring ius soli, dating back to the seventeenth century and continued by the 1959 Act, which foresaw automatic andex legeacquisition of Portuguese nationality by the children of a Portuguese or foreign father (or Portuguese or foreign mother, when the father was stateless, of unknown nationality or unknown) born in Portuguese territory.

    The Portuguese...

  17. 13 Spain
    (pp. 477-516)
    Ruth Rubio Marín

    As a country with an emigration tradition, the main mode of automatic acquisition of nationality in Spain isius sanguinis, even though the system also contains ius soli elements. Spain embraces an unqualified ius sanguinis in favour of those born of a Spanish mother or father who become nationals regardless of whether they are born in Spain or outside of Spain (art. 17.1. of the Civil Code, henceforth CC). Automatic access to nationality is also guaranteed for those born in Spain but only if at least one of the parents was also born in Spain (double ius soli) (art. 17.1...

  18. 14 Sweden
    (pp. 517-550)
    Hedvig Lokrantz Bernitz and Henrik Bernitz

    The Instrument of Government (regeringsformen), which is the fundamental law that lays down the basic principles by which the Swedish State is governed, states in Chapter 8 art. 2 that provisions relating to Swedish citizenship are laid down in law. The provisions are found in the Swedish Citizenship Act (2001: 82). This law, however, gives no information concerning the particular legal effects of national citizenship; these must instead be sought in other parts of Swedish legislation. The Swedish Citizenship Act merely concerns the acquisition and loss of citizenship, as well as procedures.

    For a long time the ius sanguinis tradition...

  19. 15 United Kingdom
    (pp. 551-586)
    Ann Dummett

    British nationality law defines six types of legal nationality. These are British Citizenship (BC), British Overseas Territories Citizenship (BOTC – formerly called British Dependent Territories Citizenship or BDTC), British Overseas Citizenship (BOC), British Subjects (BS), British Protected Persons (BPP) and British Nationals (Overseas) (BNO). By far the largest category is British citizenship. This status is the only one which confers right of residence and entry in the UK, together with EEA freedom of movement.

    The main mode of acquisition of British nationality has always been by birth to anyone (except foreign diplomats) on the national territory. This ancient ius soli...

  20. List of contributors
    (pp. 587-588)