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Belgian citizenship

Belgian citizenship can be granted to the following categories:
Birth / Adoption

  1. A child born to a Belgium mother or father could acquire Belgium nationality if he or she was born inside the country.
  2. Adopted minors under 18, if one parent is a citizen of Belgium;
  3. A child born inside the country and whose parents are not known;
  4. Children, who were born outside Belgium but to a Belgium mother or father, can acquire citizenship at the age of 5.
  5. Children adopted abroad, if one parent is a citizen of Belgium, have the right to receive citizenship at the age of 5;
  6. Children born to foreign nationals who have resided in Belgium for a minimum of 10 years, have the right to receive citizenship following 12 years of residence in the country.


Standard time period required for naturalization is 10 years. Upon that an alien has the right to apply for Belgian citizenship.

House of Representatives is responsible for the naturalization of foreign citizens.

Naturalization applicants must meet the following requirements:

  1. Be over 18 years of age;
  2. Legally reside in Belgium for a minimum of 5 years, without remaining outside the country for longer than the authorized time;
  3. Proficiency in one of the official languages (German, French, Dutch);
  4. Prove effective integration in Belgium society;
  5. Demonstrate financial interests in Belgium (employment, entrepreneurship).

The period of training in university is not taken into consideration for citizenship obtaining.

The 10-year period, required for naturalization, can be shortened in case of:

  1. Marriage with Belgian citizen for the minimum period of 3 years with the right to reside in the country – period for naturalization is reduces to 6 months;
  2. Refugees, stateless persons, who reside legally in the country, are entitled to obtain citizenship in 2 years.

Disability, retirement

Foreign nationals, who live and work in Belgium continuously, has the right for citizenship obtaining in case of disablement and invalidity through the fault of their employer.

Upon reaching the age of pension with previous minimum period of work in Belgium for 5 years an alien is also eligible to become a citizen.

Belgium recognizes dual citizenship. Consequently, it is not necessary for foreign national to renounce their citizenship, unless dual citizenship is prohibited in home country.

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