Living in Greece

A practical guide to moving, living, working & traveling in Greece, plus musing and misadventures from an American in Athens

Ways to get Greek citizenship

Who is eligible for Greek citizenship? With the 52-page Greek Citizenship Code passed March 2010, there are eight ways to acquire Greek citizenship, which is the first step to applying for a Greek passport and Greek national ID/tautotita.

However, the Greek government froze all applications for foreigners of no Greek origin as of November 2012. An official revision promised by early 2014 has been postponed indefinitely.

Only persons of Greek blood (jus sanguinis) can obtain citizenship at this time, as it had been previous to 2010. Read the section “Challenge to the New Greek Citizenship Code,” which follows the bulleted list.

  • By Birth in Greece to a Greek mother and/or father: A child born in Greece to at least one parent who was a Greek citizen at the time of the child’s birth acquires Greek citizenship.
  • By Birth to Non-Greek Parents who are Long-Term Residents of Greece: A child born in Greece to two non-Greek parents acquires Greek citizenship, if both parents are legally living in Greece with the proper residence/work permits for a minimum of five (5) consecutive years. Deadline to apply is within three (3) years of a child reaching age 18. *Frozen
  • By Attending School in Greece: A child of long-term residents living in Greece can obtain Greek citizenship if he/she lives legally with the proper residence permit and has attended primary/secondary school in Greece for at least six (6) years before age 18, approximately. Deadline to apply is within three (3) years of a child finishing his/her six (6) years of schooling. *Frozen
  • By Recognition: For minors under the age of 18 born out of wedlock, then legally recognized by a Greek national born in Greece.
  • By Adoption: For minors under the age of 18 who were legally adopted by Greek nationals/citizens.
  • By Naturalization: For foreigners of no Greek origin who have long-term residency in Greece. *Marriage to a Greek citizen does not automatically grant citizenship or a Greek passport to a non-Greek spouse; he/she must go through the naturalization process after three (3) to seven (7) consecutive years legal residence in Greece, proving fluency in Greek and earning a certificate in ancient Greek history/culture. Click the link to see all of the requirements. *Frozen

Laws are not retroactive. You cannot apply for Greek citizenship under today’s laws based on birth to immigrant parents or a period of schooling/residence that occurred in the past if you no longer live in Greece.

There are no other ways of getting Greek citizenship unless the government bestows an honorary citizenship. This is usually reserved for humanitarian reasons or for athletes, artists or other world citizens who are Philhellenes that have done extraordinary things to promote Greece.

* Article last updated October 8, 2014, but answers in ‘Comments’ reflect a specific case or whatever laws were in effect at the time.

Warning

Embassies have posted outdated English-language versions of the Greek citizenship code, which is why I did my own translation and update this website on a rolling basis.

Also note that official websites, expat forums/websites, lawyers and government sources in different countries have plagiarized my articles without permission, which violates copyright and the law. Therefore, you are not necessarily getting confirmation from different sources.

Be careful who you trust.

Challenge to New Greek Citizenship Code 3838/2010

A supreme court ruled certain sections of the new Greek Citizenship Code ‘unconstitutional’ in February 2011, namely those that grant Greek citizenship via attending school in Greece and birth in Greece to non-Greek parents with long-term residency, plus lowering the residence requirement for Greek citizenship via naturalization from 10 of 12 years to only seven (7) years and lowering the fee from 1500 euros to 700 euros.

The court was scheduled to issue a final decision at the end of 2011, but ex-PM George Papandreou — the man who ordered overhaul of Greek citizenship laws — stepped down November 2011, and the Council of State upheld “some sections” were unconstitutional in November 2012. Even before this ruling, the government that took power in June 2012 said they would change them again. This is not surprising since nationalists and fascists were elected to Parliament. We are waiting for those amendments to be officially published.

Many municipalities refuse to accept applications, though they are lawfully required to keep taking them under the current law. If this happens to you, contact the Greek ombudsman.

On November 30, 2012 the minister of interior froze all procedures pertaining to granting Greek citizenship to persons of non-Greek origin. Therefore, until the ban is lifted, it is not possible for anyone to acquire Greek citizenship, a Greek passport or Greek ID unless they are of Greek descent/origin/blood.

On February 5, 2013, Greece announced that all non-Greek foreigners granted Greek citizenship under the 2010 reform may lose their voting rights and, possibly, their Greek passports and Greek IDs.

On October 15, the Ministry of Interior announced that a new Immigration Code (Κώδικα Μετανάστευσης) under 4151/2013 had been drafted and would impact citizenship to foreigners, but this has not been debated in Parliament or officially published into law.

On February 14, 2014, the government stated that the new immigration bill does not and will not address Greek citizenship for foreigners, and all non-Greeks and the Greek diaspora can no longer vote in elections.

Only 1,358 non-Greek children have secured Greek citizenship as second-generation immigrants born in Greece and 1,295 by attending school as of end of December 2011; another 7,700 applications are pending or have already been rejected. Fears of 200,000 to a half million non-Greeks “becoming Greek” and impacting elections are fictional.

A majority 90 percent, or 200,000 applications in the queue, belong to foreign-born Greeks staking a claim via ancestry or descent.

Acquiring Greek citizenship as an investor

Citizenship cannot be acquired by simply being an investor, only through the methods listed above. Residence permits are granted for a duration of three years should a business be approved by the Ministry of Interior and started in Greece. However, citizenship would still require a non-EU citizen to go through naturalization.

Special visas and residency permits were discussed November 2012 and circulars published in May 2013 for certain categories of homeowners. See “How to get a visa and permit for residency in Greece.”

The prime minister mentioned the possibility of offering Greek citizenship to an elite class of millionaire investors during his May 2013 trip to China, but similar promises have been made in the past and never kept.

Beware of lawyers using misleading information to promote services and lure clients.

Marrying for Greek citizenship

Citizenship is not transferable, so it is not possible to acquire Greek nationality/citizenship and a Greek passport by marriage alone to a Greek citizen. The wife or husband must claim Greek citizenship by being of Greek origin or live in Greece for many years and go through the naturalization process described in ‘By Naturalization’ from the first section above.

Important note for men

Men who are under the age of 45 and interested in acquiring Greek citizenship should see the category “Military service” to determine their lawful, mandatory obligations.

Dual citizenship

Many countries, including the United States, Canada and Australia, allow dual citizenship under the right circumstances. Americans can see, “American and Greek dual citizenship” for details. Other nationalities should consult directly with governmental authorities or officials, not forums, lawyers advertising on the Internet, friends or relatives.

Sources

Old Greek Citizenship Code” (in English, brief/informal translation)
New Greek Citizenship Code“: ΦΕΚ 49, 3838/2010 (in Greek)
English translation of the new Greek Citizenship Code (created on my own time, not available to the public)
Court questions legality of new Greek citizenship code” — Kathimerini
Ιθαγένεια στους μετανάΣτΕς με…ελληνόμετρο” — Eleftherotypia
Η απόδοση ιθαγένειας και ο όρος του αίματος” — Kathimerini
Greek citizens in Turkey expelled in 1962” — Queens Gazette
Greek citizenship up, ruling looms” — Athens News
New Greek citizenship law has little impact” — Kathimerini

Related Posts

How to get a Greek passport
How to get a Greek national ID or tautotita

Shortlink: http://bit.ly/greekcitizenship

Discussed but not implemented

http://www.tovima.gr/society/article/?aid=467606

http://www.ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w_articles_wsite1_1_25/08/2012_458259

http://www.tovima.gr/society/article/?aid=483806

http://www.ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w_articles_wsite1_1_14/11/2012_470017

http://www.tovima.gr/society/article/?aid=483908

http://www.naftemporiki.gr/news/cstory.asp?id=2259859

http://www.tovima.gr/society/article/?aid=487284

http://www.tovima.gr/society/article/?aid=489320

http://www.tovima.gr/society/article/?aid=491753

http://www.tovima.gr/society/article/?aid=493951

http://www.tovima.gr/society/article/?aid=496838

http://www.enet.gr/?i=news.el.article&id=341590

http://www.tovima.gr/society/article/?aid=497506

http://www.enet.gr/?i=news.el.politikh&id=346584 *

http://www.ekathimerini.com/4dcgi/_w_articles_wsite1_1_27/02/2013_484682

106 Comments

  sophia wrote @ July 7th, 2008 at 12:08

Hello, I have a greek mother (DOB.10-09-1944), a greek cypriot father (DOB. 29-11-1940) and a greek husband (DOB 27-12-1968). I have a greek tautotita, but apon what basis can i apply for a greek passport? and how about my two children also?

any information would be much appreciated as i want to return for a long term stay with my children to Greece and would like to have a greek passport for all of us.
many kind regards, sophia

Kat Reply:

Answers to your questions are contained in the links of this article and “Greek passport.” I get the feeling you did not read carefully, OR use either of the ‘Search’ or ‘Categories’ functions in the 2nd column, OR take a look at the articles under “For Greek citizens” in the 3rd column. In the future, redundant questions will be deleted as stated in my policy, “Comments, Questions and Contacting Me.” Best of luck to you. :)

  Niki wrote @ July 15th, 2008 at 18:17

My father is a Greek and mother Nigerian; i was born here in Nigeria and would love to have a Greek passport. Do i stand a chance because i am 19 this year? what can i do to obtain my passport?

Kat Reply:

Did you look at the links in the article? The answer is in the second link of the article OR in the comment above yours OR in the 3rd column under “For Greek citizens” OR in the 2nd column under “Greek passport.” Please read and search more carefully or yr question will be deleted next time, as per my policy. Good luck.

  vicky wrote @ November 4th, 2008 at 21:54

I was born in the US both my parents were born in Greece, as was my husband, how to I obtain a tautotita? Any shortcuts?

Kat Reply:

Answers are in, “How to get a Greek national ID or tautotita” and “Greek citizenship by claim of Greek origin,” which (according to my stats) you looked at for a total of 11 minutes. No shortcuts, unless you have connections. Please read them again more carefully or a future question may not be published or answered, per my policy.

  FMS wrote @ November 4th, 2008 at 22:49

Poor Kat :-) But people really appreciate your ability to comprehend the mess in Greece and guide them through it. I think it is not just a matter of laziness that they don’t read everything on the site, it is also a sense of helplessness.

Kat Reply:

To a point I sympathize. However, many of these people are Greek, speak Greek and/or have people to help them. I collected this information alone, as a non-Greek not speaking fluent Greek, then took it one step further by translating everything, writing it out in English and sharing it for free. All they need to do is read and help themselves. The alternative is to learn Greek and waste days or weeks as I did when no transparent info was available.

  Christos wrote @ March 20th, 2009 at 09:37

I d like to ask an interesting question, having read all the documents about getting a Greek Citizenship and passport: I am a Greek Cypriot, born in Cyprus by Greek Cypriot parents and have Cyprus citizenship. Would i qualify for Greek Citizenship based on ethnicity?

Kat Reply:

That’s a good question, and thank you for asking. The law says very clearly that at least one parent or your grandfather must be of Greek origin AND be born in the country of Greece. So the answer is yes if your parents or grandfather was born in Greece; but it’s no if they were not. If you would like to verify my answer, please call the Greek embassy or consulate nearest you.

  Olga wrote @ March 31st, 2009 at 18:56

I am in Greece at the moment and want my citizenship- I am able to by birth. Where do I go to get all the paper work done? I am asking everyone and no one seems to know.

Kat Reply:

You could have found the answer by looking at the article in front of you or the same answer I gave both Niki and Vicky above your comment. The instructions and addresses are in the second link, “Greek citizenship by claim of Greek origin.” If you followed the first link attached to “Birth,” it would have also led you to the same place. Articles for Greek passport and tautotita are also on the website. Please read more carefully next time.

* If redundant questions and laziness persist, the option to ask questions and leave comments will be closed on this post.

  Lukas wrote @ July 28th, 2009 at 11:00

Hallo,

Ich bin in Österreich Wien geboren.
Bin jedes Jahr seit ich geboren bin im sommer in Griechenland von Kreta,Zakyntohs,Kefalonia…
Jetzt bin ich 18Jahre alt und EU BÜRGER (Austria) ich will in Griechenland wohnen und leben. Wie bekomme ich den GR Reisepass sowie Staatsbürgerschaft?
Kann ich meinen EU Führerschein von Austria nach Griechenland umschreiben?

Bitte um Antwort

Kat Reply:

If you have Austrian citizenship, it’s not necessary to get Greek citizenship or a Greek passport to live in Greece. Also, your Austrian driver’s license is fine to use in Greece without swapping. Therefore, you are free to move here without restriction and burdensome bureaucracy.

  nurgul wrote @ September 4th, 2009 at 01:33

hi my names nurgul..im married with my husband in england.He has got greek passport and i have a turkish passport.we have been married about 4 years and we live in london.i just wondering “can i apply greek passport” thank u very much

Kat Reply:

The answer is already in the post above. Follow the link under “By Naturalization” and see if you qualify for Greek citizenship, since you must have citizenship to get a Greek passport. It takes a lot more than being married.

  Shlomi wrote @ October 17th, 2009 at 11:00

would be grateful if you can write me back to my e mail (want to ask you something about greek citizenship)

Kat Reply:

As I state in “Comments, Questions and Contacting Me,” I only answer professional inquiries and legitimate emergency cases; I do not offer personalized consultation due to hundreds of people seeking my help every day, which is the reason I started this website. Questions have already been answered on this site in 99.9% of cases, and all articles on Greek citizenship are freely available (aka, not password protected).

Based on your IP address, I predict you’re a non-EU citizen who needs to follow the naturalization link in the article above, which is the same thing I told other commentators before you. Thank you and good luck.

  ghobo wrote @ October 15th, 2010 at 22:57

Hi
-what are the requirements for Greek citizenship?
-we have some clients for that .
-how much is your fee?
thank you

Kat Reply:

The way it works is I research, translate, write, edit and update all the information on this website for free, and then you and your clients follow the instructions to help yourselves. I am not a lawyer or public service employee, nor do I pretend to be one. I’m a journalist.

If you or someone else is interested in staking a claim to Greek citizenship, you/they must qualify and meet all requirements.

  Robin wrote @ October 21st, 2010 at 23:29

Comment 1:
I need help! My son would like to visit his birthplace in Greece, but I’m afraid he will not be able to leave until he has served in the Greek military. My husband was in the USAFE when we lived in Greece and our son was born in Athens, August 1988. My husband and I were born in the USA and are US Citizens.

I have tried contacting the Greek Consulate in Chicago, IL about my son visiting Greece, but they do not respond to my phone calls, emails, or mail. Upon my son’s birth, I was told he has dual citizenship both Greek and USA. I am concerned that my son will have to serve in the Greek military if he visits Greece. Should I be concerned that this will this happen to him? Is my son considered a dual citizen? Can he safely visit Greece or will he need to renounce his Greek citizenship? Will he need formal papers to visit Greece so he will not have to serve in the military? Your help is appreciated! Thank you.

Comment 2:
Thank you for your reply Kat! Your information is appreciated as I had just about given up on letting my son travel to Greece. My congressman has also been looking into this for me, but he is finding the process of getting any answers as difficult as I had. I’m feeling more comfortable with my son’s upcoming visit to Greece. Two days after my son was born in Athens, my husband and I had to go to register his birth at the Greek Republic Registrar’s office of Amaroussion. Why do you think I was told my son had dual citizenship?

Kat Reply:

Answer 1:
You didn’t provide enough information for me to give you a customized answer, and my answer will reflect that.

As it says above in “By Birth,” a child born in Greece to two parents of no Greek origin does NOT acquire Greek citizenship/nationality. This was the law when your son was born in 1988.
– If you and your husband are not of Greek origin, your son is not an American/Greek dual citizenship holder.
– If you or your husband are of Greek origin, your son is a Greek national but only has Greek citizenship if you registered his birth here and applied for it. I’m sure you would have remembered because there are several steps necessary, done in different buildings and all in Greek.
And from what I understand, you did not live in Greece long enough for him to qualify for Greek citizenship under the new 2010 law.

Possibility of being drafted by Greek military:
– If you and your husband are not of Greek origin, your son is in no danger of being drafted by the Greek military.
– If you or your husband are of Greek origin, your son is in danger of being drafted by the Greek military. You can read more at, “Mandatory military service in Greece.”

Assuming your son is of no Greek origin and has an American passport, he can visit Greece/Schengen for 90 days in any 180-day period, which is explained in “Countries that enjoy visa-free travel to Greece.”

Answer 2:
Why? There’s no way for me to know without interviewing the person who told you this. Unless you or your husband are of Greek descent, it’s impossible for your son to legally have Greek citizenship by birth alone in 1988.

For the past 12 years, Greeks have been telling me I can get Greek citizenship just by getting married. That’s not true either.

Rumors and misinformation persist because many don’t do proper research or want to admit “I don’t know.” Part of the reason I started this website was to disseminate accurate info based on translations of official documentation and first-hand experience. Quite simply, I was tired of being misled.

  Katetsus wrote @ November 24th, 2010 at 00:24

Hi,
I have a question regarding the Greek law for citizenship.
I have a non-EU passport.
I was born in Greece in 1985 and lived there with my parents for 3 and half years.
There is a law which says that I had to live there for 5 years, in order to obtain the Greek citizenship.
I wonder if there is anyway for me to fullfil the remaing 1.5 year or anything else that would help me get the Greek citizenship.
Thanks

Kat Reply:

There is no law that says you must live here for 5 years. As stated above in the article, the new law says your parents must have lived here legally for five (5) full years for you to qualify for Greek citizenship by birth in Greece.

Since you are over the age of 18, didn’t attend school here and are of no Greek origin, your only option is to qualify for Greek citizenship is via naturalization, which says you must live in Greece for several years, speak Greek and meet a number of other requirements detailed in “Greek citizenship through naturalization.”

  MIDO wrote @ November 29th, 2010 at 04:25

I and my mother a Greek nationality and I am born in 1978. What are the papers required to obtain the Greek citizenship and I hold Egyptian citizenship, and baptism is the note that I am a Muslim

Kat Reply:

You did not provide enough information for me to help you. Therefore, read the options above and see if you qualify. If you qualify for one of them, click the link of the article and follow the instructions on what papers are needed and how to apply for Greek citizenship.

  Keira wrote @ January 10th, 2011 at 09:36

Comment 1:
Hi there,

I have a somewhat sensitive question to ask on behalf of my boss. It looks like some of the Greek Islands are up for sale now and my boss is looking into possibly investing in one. My question is will the investors be able to acquire Greek or EU citizenship if they did end up with ownership of an Island? I know that you mentioned there would be no citizenship granted for investors, but is that just for regular investment? Does the government have new rules/laws for this specific kind of investment? Please quote the related government policy or articles regarding this if you could. You help is much appreciated.

Comment 2:
Thank you so much for your fast reply. Sorry if it seems like my question was redundant. I just wanted to be sure that the information was up to date since I couldn’t find such answers on any government website.

I have another somewhat stupid/redundant question. In my scenario, will such investor be able to get a green card from such investment? In addition, do you know of any websites where I can obtain government policies, laws and administrations over island purchases after the financial crisis? I have already done some research online and have come up empty handed. Thank you in advance.

Kat Reply:

Answer 1:
All of your questions are already answered in the article above.

The only ways to get Greek citizenship are through the methods listed above, or honorary citizenship granted to an extraordinary Philhellene. It is the most current and relevant information anywhere in English, as it incorporates the newest law from March 2010. There have been no revisions since then.

As I say, no Greek citizenship for investors. Doesn’t matter if you’re a property owner, business owner, island owner.

I cannot quote the related policies or articles you seek because they do not exist. If they did, I would have already revised the article and given my sources above.

Answer 2:
The article was last updated December 29, 2010 as denoted in the first section, and I don’t know any country that makes changes to its Citizenship Code twice in less than a year.

There’s no such thing as a green card for Greece. There are residence/work permits for non-EU citizens, and I explain the most common ones at “How non-EU citizens can get a permit to move, live and work in Greece.” The one I suppose is most applicable to your boss is “How to get a visa and residence permit for Greece.”

In closing, I’d like to explain something that may help you and your boss. There are three types of resources on Greece:
a) Official websites — a recent innovation offered primarily in Greek — that are often poorly written, poorly translated (if at all), rife with bureaucratic jargon, inaccurate, incomplete and/or not updated.
b) Unofficial websites started, bought and/or written by people with no credentials or actual knowledge, compiled with plagiarized material for the purpose of driving traffic and making money on travel packages or advertising; expat forums where anyone can contribute and information is not moderated or cited with sources.
c) Unofficial websites written by people with credentials and first-hand experience, where sources are attributed.

When I started this website in 2007, the only credible online resource was livingincrete.net for UK/EU citizens. There were no official government, consular/embassy or EU websites in existence, and no articles pertaining to non-EU citizens. The landscape has changed as my website concept has been copied and plagiarized by people/entities I won’t name, but you will continue to come up empty handed if you depend on official government websites as primary sources. Hiring a Greek translator or adept attorney may help, but the problem with this is they won’t have first-hand experience as a non-EU citizen with bureaucracy, which is always different than what’s written in policy.

Greece is and will be in financial crisis for several years. It is not over, so I don’t know what you mean by “after.” I do not know anyone who has bought or is buying an island, so I cannot help you further.

  Naomi wrote @ April 26th, 2011 at 19:26

My child was born in Greece, but he left Greece at the age of 2 years old. I am not a Greek citizen, nor did i have a legal status at the time of my child’s birth which is 18 years ago. My child has a Greek birth certificate and lives in Afrika.

My question is, can my child still claim Greek citizenship?

Regards,
Naomi

Kat Reply:

Answer is in the article above. You also didn’t provide enough information, and my answer will reflect that.

1. Citizenship in any country is a lawful privilege, so you must be legal in order to stake a claim.
2. Simply being born in Greece does not entitle your child to Greek citizenship. Take a look at the article.

In your son’s case, the only way he can stake a claim to Greek citizenship is if his father is a Greek citizen. If his father is Greek, follow the link given under ancestry for detailed instructions on how he can apply. If the father is not Greek, then the answer is ‘no.’

  Nick wrote @ July 4th, 2011 at 13:47

Comment 1: i’m from a non eu country and i live in Greece since 2002. i’m studying in Greece for almost 9 years (one more year and i finish high school {triti lykeioy}. i came legally in the country and nowadays i am interested in obtaining greek citizenship since it could prove helpful for many reasons such as studying in EU’s universities.

none of my parents are greek, but both of them live here for more than 10 years. can i obtain greek citizenship?

Comment 2: i’m not sure i can find anything similar to my case..
as i understand, due to the fact that i was not born in greece and i am not of greek ethnic origin, i do not have any way of taking citizenship… am i right?
please be patient… :)

Kat Reply:

Answer 1: Your question is already answered in the above article. Take a look, and follow the relevant links.

Answer 2: I’ll give you the answer. You qualify for Greek citizenship:

a) By Attending School: See the entry above called “By Attending School in Greece”. However, see the section, “Challenge to new Greek Citizenship Code 3838/2010″ where it says applications are hold and why.
b) By Naturalization: See entry above called “By Naturalization.” Click the link and look at everything you must do to apply.

Neither of these methods requires you to be born in Greece, the child of a Greek or Greek yourself.

Answers 3 and 4: Your third and fourth comments contained redundant questions already answered in the Naturalization article and were deleted, per my Comment/Question policy.

I’m very patient — I translated a 52-page law from Greek to English, collected first-hand information, wrote up all the articles and made them available for free. I doubt you’ll find the same assistance anywhere else, but the information can only help you if you help yourself and you have a difficult road ahead in applying for Greek citizenship if you cannot do that.

  Nicole wrote @ July 13th, 2011 at 19:45

Hi Kat,
I can’t get over the plethora of knowledge you have on this subject and I’m sure everyone, not only those who’ve commented, but those that visit your site appreciates your guidance as this process can get confusing. So thank you.

I do actually have a question and I will avoid all the nitty-gritty details, but I’m trying to help my mom get Greek citizenship. She was born in Romania, but is 100% greek. She lived in Greece for a few years, but she and her parents fled the country during the communist takeover. As a result, she had to renounce her Greek citizenship (as dual-citizenship did not exist at the time), so she does not have a copy of her old passport. Now she would like to become a dual US-Greek citizen, but would she still have to apply under “Ancestry, descent or origin?” Would that apply to her even though she was a citizen herself? And if she is accepted, as her daughter would I be able to apply and likely be accepted? (obviously after all her work is official)

Thank you for your help.

Kat Reply:

I cannot advise you for two reasons: a) I do not know enough about your mother’s case to dispense an accurate answer or research one; b) from the little I know, it sounds like a special case that requires advice from a consular official at the Greek embassy/consulate nearest your residence or someone on staff at the citizenship office in Athens. You can find the contact information at the end of “Greek citizenship via ancestry.”

Whether you are later eligible depends on how and why she was granted Greek citizenship. The majority of claims through parents or grandparents must prove an ancestor born in Greece.

Thank you for your kind words. It’s difficult to gauge whether people appreciate what I do because they rarely say anything positive or give back to the website, I’m plagiarized daily and ridiculed by the same people I help, and many still think official sites are more accurate, though it’s been proven they’re not.

I continue doing it because the few that do say nice things and give back make it worth it, and I believe it serves the greater good.

  Kat wrote @ July 18th, 2011 at 15:06

I don’t know whether you deleted my post or where it went, but my questions were genuine. I just wanted to know:

1. if i have a certified birth cert, marriage cert and everything else in order, whether you know of applications that have gone through without the pistopoiitiko oikogeneiakis katastasis?

2. whether applying for citizenship in the current climate is wise? my cousin has told me greece is still functional and running as usual, though i don’t want to be caught in an overly long waiting process…

Thanks in advance for your answers,
Kat

Kat Reply:

Due to my professional and personal commitments, I asked that persons of Greek origin seek help on citizenship from their local Greek consulate/embassy or friends/relatives if it was not covered by my article. You ignored me, found another post with comments open and left questions anyway, they were not deleted, they were answered, you should have been notified via email there was an answer (check spam), and there have been 10 comments since. Take a look.

http://livingingreece.gr/2007/07/09/acquiring-greek-citizenship-by-foreign-nationals-of-greek-origin/

P.S. I disagree with your cousin on “as usual” and provide evidence.

  crazyeb1986 wrote @ July 24th, 2011 at 19:37

So here’s my dilemma.

I was born to australian parents with no greek ancestry. We had always been with greeks all our lives. I went to an evening greek school since i was 3, I’m greek orthodox, I speak greek, I think i have the same mentality, I travel to greece two times a year for a period of three months. oh and my parents studied in greece and met there. and some relatives (non-greeks) are married to greeks.

So, after all this am i eligible to apply for greek citizenship ?

Kat Reply:

Seriously? No. Read the article.

There are people who live and work 24/7/365 in Greece, speak Greek like natives and breathe everything Greece — including me — but that doesn’t make us Greek citizens. If it did, we’d all be.

At most, you’re a Philhellene or Graecophile, and I think you should look up the definition of dilemma.

  mary wrote @ August 12th, 2011 at 10:56

Shall I pose a question too? What happens if you enter Greek university and stay in Greece for approximately 7 years? I also hold a B2 (language) certificate in Greek. Is university under the category “school” or does this apply only for children?

Kat Reply:

The entry refers to children of legal long-term residents living in Greece, and ‘school’ means primary/secondary school, which is why the application deadline is expected to be on or around the applicant’s 18th birthday.

Greece and the majority of (if not all) countries around the world do not count time spent as a foreign university student toward citizenship because it’s understood that he/she will go home after the course of study, the sole reason he/she was granted temporary permission to be in the country.

The new Greek Citizenship Code was rewritten to include those with a permanent connection to this country, including non-EU children who were born, raised, attended school in Greece and have known no other country. Also, because public Greek universities are free and students are notorious for taking 5-10 years to graduate (or not), it makes no sense to grant citizenship to people being supported by taxpayer money.

  yonan wrote @ September 27th, 2011 at 15:09

Comment 1:
I like your website
It’s good to find some thing like that for free
My mother from Egypt, My father from Greece who was born and rise in Greece and from Greek family live in Greece.
They married in Greece and Egypt 15 years ego but they got divorce before I born
So since this time we do not have any contact with that whom called my father
I don’t know any thing about him but my mother have her marriage certificate the Greek one + some thing called Dimous or Family record “old one” only include my mother name and my father name not me
So I know throw your web that I can apply for Greek citizenship but when I went to consulate they tolled me we consider you as missing Greek citizen you will not have it and why you need it you live all your life in Egypt you don’t speak Greek language, they treat me very bad and that hurts me so much
Just in that day I understood why my mother does not want to hear any thing about Greece because they treat people very bad especially who does not know Greek language.
Now I am 14 years old But after 2 years I had to apply for army so I need to have my Greek citizen paper with me as long as it’s written in my birth certificate that my father from another country I cant ignore their request in that its army needs and paper should be ready

I only have Egyptian nationality from my mother. Also I was born in Egypt.
So can you tell me what I can do in that please?
Thanks for that great website

Comment 2:
I can see you usually answer people in the same date but in my case it’s not as usual.
So may be you are in vacation enjoy it I wish for you happy time but please when you are able to answer me please do that.
I hope you are ok ???
Thanks

Comment 3:
What I asked you already were Question end with???
Also when I mention vacation its not some thing bad to make you upset & give you the right to tell me go else where.
I know you did that web for free but that is not give you the right to be harsh like that what all I said enjoy your time and please when you have time …… there is no need to give people felling that you are upper hand than them because you know information they does not know.

Comment 4:
If I meant you ignore my question I will say that directly not as you pretend & that was very clear from my word my word was very polite & give deep good excuse to you if you don’t understand it its mean the issue in you not in my word.
I said you usually answer people very soon so that mean your people should be thankful for that then I gave you excuse why you did not answer me in the same day or after 2 days.
Before I say some thing I look to your history in answering to the other
Now big hand to you because you are very cleaver actor whom can make truth upside down instead of apologize or explanation with polite way you directly meant the other side whom using not suitable word
You mentioned I born outside marriage but I came from marriage relation Even if my parents divorce before I born because it’s not mean as you mention out of marriage relation “baby needs time in his mother uterus till he born”.
You don’t know duration of pregnancy lady ??????
My mother could be pregnant in me without knowing that till 2 month pass or at least one month & half ???
So divorce during pregnancy not mean that my father should recognize me & if the low say that it’s not low it’s a tool for injustice

Kat Reply:

In reverse order.

Answer 4:
In the case of a child born to a non-Greek woman and Greek man — and in some cases, even two Greek citizens — the parents must be married during a woman’s pregnancy and at the time of a child’s birth in order for the child to stake a claim to citizenship via ancestry. You said they were divorced before you were born. Thus, as I said, you were born outside marriage.

The answers I give are based on facts and whatever information you made available to me. If you take issue with them, direct complaints at the Greek government, not the messenger. I do not ask that people be grateful, but I again remind you that I’m not obligated in any way to help you for free.

Answer 3:
Where does it say I have the upper hand? Anyone has the ability to acquire the information and knowledge I have through translation, research and experience. Unfortunately, most people just plagiarize me and spread rumors.

You mention how I answered others but not you, as if I were ignoring you. Seriously? You had only been waiting one day, and I am not obligated to answer any questions.

I also do not see where I was upset or harsh. I quickly stated facts and gave you options. That’s all.

Answer 2:
From Sept 28: I’m definitely not on vacation. Read “Comments, Questions and Contacting Me” to understand my commitments. If it’s a question I can answer quickly, I do. If it’s not, I can’t. If you cannot wait, please go elsewhere for assistance.

Answer 1:
If you read the article above, you should know that you do not qualify for Greek citizenship. Why?
a) You were not born in Greece;
b) Your father is Greek but your mother and father divorced before you were born. Therefore, you were born outside marriage and never registered in the Dimous family record…which means:
c) Your father must recognize you as his son or be forced by a court before the age of 18, as it says in the article above under “By Recognition.” Until then, you are not in any way eligible for Greek citizenship, you cannot apply for citizenship, and you cannot get any papers related to being a Greek citizen.

Per my Comment policy, I had the right to delete your questions because they were redundant and already answered above. Instead I took the time and energy to repeat myself and not publish new information that would have helped hundreds of others. Good luck.

  Jennifer wrote @ October 4th, 2011 at 20:02

I am an American citizen (25 years old) born to a Greek-American father (born in NY) and Greek mother (born in Greece, moved to the US when she was 30 years old). What is the best way for me to apply for citizenship? I have tried contacting the Greek Consulate in New York, but getting through to them is difficult. I know that I qualify for citizenship but what do I need to present to them in order to begin the process? Thanks for your help!

Kat Reply:

I get the feeling you didn’t read the article. Look at the fourth bullet point, click the link to “Acquiring citizenship by claim of Greek origin” and follow the instructions.

  Bilal wrote @ October 25th, 2011 at 06:43

Hello, I am from Pakistan. I want to know that how can I get nationality of Greek. Can I buy it, like some counties people pay some money and they get nationality and whole citizenship. I will be very thankful to you.

Kat Reply:

I already answered this question previously. The only ways to get Greek citizenship are listed above in the article.

  Bryan wrote @ November 3rd, 2011 at 19:11

I have a question, and I apologize if you’ve already answered it somewhere.

At the time of my birth (in the US) my mother was married to a Greek citizen. Unfortunately, she has not heard from him in decades, and does not know where he was born. I need to know where he was born in order to obtain his birth certificate, in order to apply for Greek citizenship. All I have are his name and approximate age (from his marriage certificate.)

I read on one of your posts that you don’t (necessarily) recommend hiring lawyers to help with citizenship cases, but I was wondering to whom I could turn for help with this? Are there any Greek investigators who can find out this sort of thing?

Thank you so much for your time, patience, and your informative articles.

Kat Reply:

A similar question was answered on “Greek citizenship via ancestry,” and I know you read that post, saw that comments were closed and came over here to ask a question, which I specifically discourage.

The family record (oikogeneiaki merida) belongs to the Greek citizen, and he/she chooses who is listed in it and where it’s located; it’s not necessarily located where he was born. If you are not listed or recognized as his son by blood or legal adoption, you cannot access these records even if you knew where it was. Hiring a lawyer or investigator will not help. The only way the issue can be forced is if you’re under the age of 18, as explained above via Recognition.

When staking a claim to Greek citizenship through an ancestor, it is assumed you have an active relationship with them (or at least basic knowledge) because it is this relationship that grants you the lawful right. If this relationship is in question, then so is your right to claim citizenship.

  nuvam wrote @ November 6th, 2011 at 07:23

I have a dellema here,can you please help me? Well, I am a citizen of Nepal and I am married with Greek women. Is there any process or chances for me to get Greek passport or citizenship as we are planning to shift in Greece. And I have never been to Greece, she is here with me now and we get married here in Nepal.

Also help me that how can I enter Greece with her to meet her parents. If I can apply for that then please kindly tell me how.

Thank you for your patience

Kat Reply:

You didn’t read the article.

1. There’s no chance of you getting Greek citizenship or a passport. You need to live in Greece many years, speak the language and pass many hurdles. Marriage alone is not enough. See the section called ‘Marrying for Greek citizenship’ or click the link above for Naturalization.

2. I already say how it can be done. Click the link above for Naturalization.

If you want to visit Greece, you need a visa. See “Countries that need a visa for Greece.”

The information can only help you if you help yourself. I do not offer free personal consultation. The hard work of translating, research, experience, writing, editing and updating was done; all you need to do is read and follow instructions.

Goodbye and good luck.

  adam wrote @ November 20th, 2011 at 02:25

living legal in Greece since 2003 working for big telecommunication company, have two children one born in Greece and other in UK. Pay all my taxes more than 2000 euros a year now. But none of my children has acquired a Greek citizenship.

My wife resident permit was not renewed because of the new law which says you must have at least 10000 euros of tax a year to manage a family, that is ridiculer, because I missed to pay some taxes on 2008, now I wanted to apply for my children, they told me we must have completed five years of permit (both parent and no veveos), and I have more than that but because my permit was always late to come out for renewal if you plus all the durations I have it is not completed 5 years.

About my newborn I was told to find my embassy to issue her a passport and to apply for resident permit instead of citizenship, so do not expect anything, even the Greek language they only accept certificate from Greek University which cost 800 a year but to get place cost you 5 years, because there is only one in every municipal.

Kat Reply:

Regarding your wife’s residence permit, it is not a new law. Immigration policy in place since 2005 says a non-EU citizen in Greece supporting another non-EU citizen must have a minimum declared income of 8,500 per year, plus 20 percent more for a dependent spouse and 15 percent for each child. Whether you think it’s ridiculous is irrelevant because it’s the law and they are implementing it.

Under the new Greek citizenship law passed in 2010, children born in Greece to non-Greek parents can only claim citizenship if both parents can prove continuous legal residency in Greece for five years. Greek authorities know how long you and your wife have been here legally with a bebaiosi or residence permit, as it’s stored in a database. The main issue is your wife does not have legal status in Greece, not whether you had a bebaiosi or permit.

The best solution for your newborn is to get a passport issued by your country of origin and apply for a Greek residence permit. And if you want to fix the situation with your wife’s residence permit, you can still file your taxes for 2008, pay a penalty and then apply for her permit and pay another penalty; otherwise, she must technically leave Greece. The Ombudsman can help you for free. Good luck.

  Melina wrote @ December 2nd, 2011 at 21:28

Twitter messages
Dec 02, 8:45pm: I need you advice as soon as possible about greek citizenship, so if you can help me please start following me an send me DM

Dec 02, 9:37pm: I sent you post on your site: livingingreece.gr/2007/10/16/im-… … Please answer..I will be so boring to you these days :)

Comment 1:
Dear dear dear Kat :) ,

I spent now few hours reading about all information posted on this site. And I know you are probably busy busy man, and I also start to follow you on twitter because I need your advice and help, and there is no email posted (btw, I think this is a smart decision, because there is always a way to get to you if person are patient and persistent enough ;) )..

My question is about requiring greece citizenship. You are probably thinking now that I didn’t read all that text carefully, but trust me I did.. :) And, regardless of that, I have one question about my situation…

I am non-EU citinzship, from Croatia, I was born and raised in Zagreb, Croatia. I’m 25 years old. My biological father is greek, born and raised there, and his dad and family are greeks also.
After I was born my biological father left to Greece (and he and my mother were never married) and he never officially “admitted” me in Greece, so I don’t have (for now) greek birth certificate.
Meanwhile, when I was a little girl, 4 years old, my mother got married to croatian man, and that man (my croatian father) admitted me as his daughter, and I got his last name, and new birth certificat where stand that he is my father..

After years of not knowing my situation in the age of 10 I found out that my croatian father is not my biological father, and finally I met my biological father this September 2011. when I was in visit. My croatian family accepted that great, and my greek family also.

I called today greek Embassy in Zagreb today, and they told me that is possible for me to ask greece sitizenship, and that we need to do is that my biological father admits me as his daughter and that I need to have a paper caled birth certificat. Lady also said that I don’t need to even change my name (and take my biological father name) if my biological father agrees with that (he would have to wrote a statement where he claims that he is OK with that).

It would me fair from me that I tell you why I’m doing this.. Well, first I have a strong wish to work abroad, Switzerland maybe, and it’s hard for me as a non-EU country citizenship find a job and get a work permit (well, withouh marrie some guy :D ) .. And second, it’s because I didn’t know who my biological father is for 25 years, I never met him, or saw him (that I now)..And now I done that, and I see that he is a good man, and whole that situacian broght me a lot of good things..I feel closer to Greece, and I would like to learn language, culture (more that history classes) and expirience Greece in all “her” beauty :)

Now, I’m coming to my question(s):

1. Can I have dual citizenship (croatian and greek)? (I think I can, in Croatia is allowed to have dual citizenship, and I think in Greece is the same – I’m just checking ;) )

2. Is a problem that I already in my country have a father, on paper? A birth certificate where is listed that my father is another man, and not my greek biological father? Is there any option where I can prove (like DNA test) that my greek father is my biological father in order to ask for this right, citizenship (this refers to if there is a problem because I have another father on papper)?

3. After I (and if I) get my greek birth certificate and then citizenship, do I have same rights like citizens of EU? Can I work in foreign country using my greece citizenship?

This is for now.. I’m very intrigued by this idea, and I will be persistant and patient. Please answer me (this is veeery important for me) if you have time on my comment, here or on my email. What ever you like.. :)

Thank you in advance and hear you soon.

Yours sincerely,
Melina (and yes, I have a greek name :D )

Comment 2:
Same message left again at 2011/12/05 at 00:00

Comment 3:
Left at 2011/12/05 at 21:32

It’s that easy to offend you, ha? I’m a good person, and I don’t know why are you ignoring me that much. It’s stupid and childish from you and I don’t need your help if you are so ridged.. No, I don’t want your help acually, I have friends there and I will find out what I want to know. I really can not believe that a man with such reputation like you have can behave to people like that. I wouldn’t say a thing if you just deleted my post, but you sent me 5 twitter messages to let me know that I was rude for you, and in one of that message you said you will answer me. That’s just mean, but you don’t care what I think, right? You will probably delete this also.
I said I was sorry TWICE because I upset you in some way (and I reapet, it was not my intention in any way, I was trying to be kind, nice and funny), but it isn’t enough for you.
I hope that as many people read this comment.

Goodbye.

  Niko wrote @ December 21st, 2011 at 02:35

Hey I’m an 18 year old guy, my father was born in greece and is a Greek citizen. My mother, however, is american. I’ve lived in Greece for a couple of years while i was younger and now want to gain a Greek Citzenship. I am a little unclear on what i need to apply. I know i need my birth certificate, my Fathers and my Mothers. Then i need their marriage papers from America and greece? My parents are not married in Greece therefore how do i go about that. and what other paper work do i need?

Kat Reply:

You need to read the article above and click the link in the fourth bullet point called, “Acquiring Greek citizenship by claim of Greek origin.”

Beyond that, I do not offer personal consultation for reasons stated in the last comment attached to that article.

  aamir wrote @ January 8th, 2012 at 18:31

hi, i am asian and a resident of pakistan , i want to get GREEK passport trough by getting marraige to a GREEK girl???

well it is possiabale?? if yes!! then how?? plzzz inform me!1

Kat Reply:

My answer is the same one given to ‘nuvam’ above you or you can click the link to “Greek citizenship via naturalization” or see the section above called ‘Marrying for Greek citizenship’ and read that being married to a Greek is not enough.

You are not eligible for Greek citizenship or a Greek passport.

  amjad wrote @ January 31st, 2012 at 13:03

Hi,
I have a question regarding the Greek law for citizenship.
i am from palestine.I have a non-EU passport.
I was born in Greece in 1980 and lived there with my parents for 6 years. and in 2002 i come back Greece for studying and i stayed till 2009 legelly legally, my family is living in greece and some of them have the greece citizenship (my sister and my father). can i apply in the consulate for a citizenship.
or i have apply for visa and do my job in greece.
thanks

Kat Reply:

As it says in the article above, “Laws are not retroactive. You cannot apply for Greek citizenship under today’s laws based on birth to immigrant parents or a period of schooling/residence that occurred in the past if you no longer live in Greece.”

You are not eligible for Greek citizenship.

  Orgesa wrote @ February 12th, 2012 at 18:51

Your comment was moved to the article, “Greek passport.”

  Khalid wrote @ February 15th, 2012 at 14:17

I am a Palestinian refugee (no nationality) and have received a job offer to go live and work in Athens.
If I live there for a long while and become fluent in Greek and study about Hellenic history and civilization would it be possible to obtain the Greek passport and become a Greek citizen?

Kat Reply:

Answer is in the first section of the article above. Click the link for ‘Naturalization’ to see all the requirements.

  philippe wrote @ February 26th, 2012 at 13:12

Hi,
Simply question: I’m greek citizen living abroad, established officially with permit in Switzerland from birth, married to a Belarussian woman since 4 years who has a valid official living and working permit in Switzerland.
How many years before she can get the greek citizenship?
There’s no children and we live in Switzerland.
Thanks for your reply
Philippe

Kat Reply:

Simple answer: Read the entry for ‘By Naturalization’ in the bulleted list and the section called ‘Marrying for Greek citizenship.’ It’s not as simple as getting married, just as I told commentators ‘nuvam’ and ‘aamir’ who asked the same question.

  alekbodjo wrote @ February 29th, 2012 at 20:13

hello and greetings!
i would like to ask if you have any latest news on the challenge to new greek citizenship 3838/2010. i do not meet the criteria to apply for cit/ship by birth but i have completed primary & secondary school. i recently visited my local immigration office (or dimos i don’t know how it’s called) and i was told that i am eligible to apply. but when i came to submit my documents they told me that i must wait for a new law to come out. i am a bit at a loss. i’d like to know if it would be best to wait a couple of years and acquire through naturalization rather than by attending school in greece

Kat Reply:

Hello. Everything I know is in the relevant section, and it will be updated if there is new information. I assume they’re waiting until after elections, as I state above in the article.

If you submit an application based on attending school, I’d be interested in knowing the list of all documents and fees they requested.

If law 3838/2010 is upheld ‘as is,’ I would advise applying on the basis of attending school in Greece because naturalization is a long and expensive process. But in the end, the choice is yours.

  mohammad wrote @ April 5th, 2012 at 12:13

i am imran i live 6 years. i am red card holder but i make greek citizenship. how can do this one…

Kat Reply:

Red card holders are not eligible to apply for Greek citizenship because they only have temporary status in Greece. You must have a normal residence permit granting full legal status.

  emmanuel wrote @ April 8th, 2012 at 20:19

Your questions were moved to “Greek citizenship by Greek origin, descent or ancestry.”

  Tony wrote @ May 5th, 2012 at 17:27

Hi

i am from egypt and My wife is british. we live in Greece.
Am i eligable to apply for Greek citizenship? Base that UK and Greece are within the Europe Union?
Thank you

Kat Reply:

You didn’t provide enough information for me to give you an answer. However, if you read the article, you should be able to determine if you are eligible for Greek citizenship.

Being married to a UK citizen and living in Greece aren’t enough. Follow the link for ‘Naturalization’ and see all the requirements.

UK and Greece are both in the EU, but they’re separate countries with separate citizenship rules. The EU is a union of countries, not one country.

  Rachel wrote @ June 18th, 2012 at 13:52

Hi, my grandmother is greek and was born is greece and my mother is half greek and tried to get a citizenship but for some reason couldn’t. I’m not sure why. I was wondering if there was any way I could get one?

Kat Reply:

The ministry gives a written reason for denial, so either your mother didn’t understand or she needs to inquire. You can read about it and whether you qualify at “Greek citizenship via ancestry,” which is the same link given in the article above under the fourth bullet.

  khan abdul razaq wrote @ June 24th, 2012 at 17:57

Hi Sir,

My son has aquired Greek citizenship recently. Me and my wife belongs to Pakistan. I have Greek permanent residence permit while my wife has two years residence permit. She is in the 7th year of her legal stay in Greece. Can we migrate to Denmark for work on the basis on our son’s citizenship without getting immigrant visa for Denmark?

Kat Reply:

I’ve answered this question before. Citizenship rights pass from parent to child, not from child to parent.

Non-EU parents can only live in an EU country based on a child’s EU citizenship if they are:
a) Not working and without sufficient income (i.e., retirement, funds from another country, etc.); and
b) dependent on their son/daughter for financial support; and
c) prepared to have their son/daughter provide proof of income at a level deemed acceptable by that country.
This does not apply to you.

The only way you could immigrate to Denmark is to start from nothing according to their immigration visa and permit laws, or get Greek citizenship yourselves through ‘Naturalization‘ as outlined above. Your Greek residence permits — permanent and 2-year — only entitle you to live/work in Greece.

Kat is a woman’s name, so I am not a ‘sir.’

  erm02 wrote @ July 17th, 2012 at 18:49

Your question was transferred to “Greek citizenship by enlistment to the military.”

  Tanja wrote @ July 27th, 2012 at 19:39

Hi!
My friends are both from Israel and they have been living in Greece for 2,5 years. They are expecting their first baby in few months and would like it to have both Israeli and Greek nationality. Is there any chance for the baby to obtain Greek nationality since they don’t live in Greece ‘at least 5 years’ as stated in law? Thank you in advance.

Kat Reply:

The baby is not eligible for Greek citizenship, and in fact the Greek citizenship law is being changed to require non-Greek parents to be living in Greece for more than 5 years.

  MariLena wrote @ August 12th, 2012 at 03:39

I was born in Greece. My father is American and was in the us air force stationed in Greece when I was born. My mother and all her family are greek from istanbul turkey with Turkish citizenship. Am I eligible for a greek passport.? Does my mom being Greek from turkey qualify as “Greek origin”?

Kat Reply:

In order to be eligible for a Greek passport, you need to have Greek citizenship. To stake a claim to Greek citizenship via origin, as defined by the Greek Citizenship Code (which I already explain above), you must have a mother, father, grandfather, grandmother of Greek descent born in Greece. If someone in your family fits that description, yes. If not, no.

If there are special circumstances you didn’t disclose or you doubt my answer, please consult and confirm with the Greek embassy/consulate nearest you or the citizenship office in Greece.

  Lussin wrote @ August 16th, 2012 at 12:05

Hello,

I would like to ask concerning investment in Greece and ability to obtain Greek citizenship. I know that there is a certain amount of investment (more than 1 000 000 EURO) and certain conditions, that gives you the right to apply for greek passport. I have heard that it is made to bring some investments in the country which is facing economic problems.
Could you please instruct me how can I figure it out as I`m planning on a purchase of a business (the amount is not small)

Kat Reply:

There are no laws that automatically grant a Greek passport under any circumstances, except birth of a baby in Greece to a parent of Greek descent. Everyone else must first apply for Greek citizenship, then apply for a Greek passport.

There are also no laws in the Greek Citizenship Code that grant Greek citizenship to investors or homeowners. I state this in the article under, “Acquiring Greek citizenship as an investor.”

The minimum investment to be granted a residency permit in Greece (not citizenship) on the ‘fast track’ program is 75 million euros, as explained in “How to start a business in Greece.”

  Stella wrote @ August 31st, 2012 at 18:04

My son was born in Greece in 2000. Im russian – lebanese, his father is native Greek but has British passport. Our child was born outside of the wedlock, but registered on his father’s name, Is my son eligeble for greek nationality. Thanks a lot in advance

Kat Reply:

I answered this question previously for commentator ‘yonan’ on September 27, 2011 (take a look), plus you did not provide enough information for me to help you.

Depends on:
a) If the father actually has Greek citizenship and was born in Greece;
b) If the father recognized and still has the child registered now in his official papers, which can only be accessed by the people listed in his registry and know the location of oikogeneiaki merida (family papers);
c) what papers you have or can get as proof.

Consult directly with the Greek embassy/consulate nearest your residence.

  Anan wrote @ October 15th, 2012 at 10:14

Hi. I am looking to obtain a greek passport is there are any ways other than the above mentioned ways can help. Some countries you pay money or invesment and you get legal passport …. if yes could u please email me back on my private email

Kat Reply:

You could have found the answer in section, “Acquiring Greek citizenship as an investor.”

I also answered this same question in response to commentator ‘Lussin’ on August 16, 2012, two entries above you.

In Comments, Questions and Contacting Me, it says that I do not email readers and why.

  Sandesh wrote @ October 25th, 2012 at 23:15

I just want to say THANKS..I log in to twitter just to read your tweets..I know all the happenings in Greece just from there..Hats Off to you Ma’am !

Kat Reply:

I’m honored that you are logging into Twitter just to check the @livingingreece feed. Too often I hear complaints or nothing at all. Glad to hear it’s appreciated and well-liked. Wishing you all the best!

  omar wrote @ November 15th, 2012 at 18:59

Comment 1:
Dear Sir,

I am a stateless perons who applied for greek citizenship about two years ago. I benefited from the new law, so as a stateless i applied for citizenship after completing three years in Greece. I had the interview, and i recently received a recommendation letter from the interviewing committee with a positive result. The file has been transfered to the ministry of interior for preparing the decision and for publishing it in the official gazette. My question is, based on the decision of the supreme court of 13th November 2012, am i going to loose my chances of acquiring the greek citizenship, or the decisions of the court only influence other articles of 3838/2010 which have nothing to do with my application and my case.

Many thanks

Comment 2:
1 – Iam really sorry, i didn’t recognize the name.

2- Does your answer mean that nothing no article from the 3838/2010 law has been frozen yet?

3- My naturalization decision has been written and sent for signature, do you think that it will proceed or it will be on hold till clarifying this issue from the minister of interior?

Many thanks Mrs. Kat.

Comment 3:
Do you have any idea about the circular send by the minister to freeze all the citizenship applications?

Do you know whether it includes the naturalization or only freezing the applications for children born in Greece?

Many thanks
Omar

Kat Reply:

Answer 1:

a) No citizenship laws have been changed yet.
b) After living here for many years, you should know the personality of Greece in that laws, implementation and enforcement are very different things.
c) You’re asking me to make predictions on an event that has not occurred, may never occur and we have no control of. No one can answer that question.
d) Kat is a woman’s name (Katherine, Katerina), so I am not a ‘sir.’

Answer 2:

2. See (a) from the first response.
3. See (c) from the first response.

Answer 3:

Question is already answered above. As it says clearly in the ‘Challenge’ section, third paragraph, ALL applications concerning non-Greeks are frozen as of November 30.

  David wrote @ November 27th, 2012 at 08:05

Hello, i am canadian and been living and working in Greece for many years. I have legal temp-residence since 2001.

I had a girlfriend from Czech Rep. with whom i had 2 children with, both children are born in Greece. The children have also attended Greek school. I was not married with her. I have a restauraunt business here in Greece.

Rather than going for the 10 year permit, do i qualify for full residence? Do i have to wait to see what the new laws are?

Kat Reply:

There’s no such thing as “temp-residence,” so I don’t know what that means. Also, you didn’t provide enough information for me to help you.

All of my articles clearly spell out the qualifications for Greek citizenship via naturalization, long-term EU-wide residency and others. If you don’t meet them, you don’t qualify. If you do, follow the instructions, gather your documentation and apply whenever you wish, now under today’s rules or in the future under whatever laws Parliament passes.

  Kenka wrote @ December 5th, 2012 at 11:55

Is heartwarming that we ‘ve such a forum where complains could be laid and answered, l was born in athens and lived in pagrati,athina & kalithea, l write,read & also speak Greek fluently, l came to light in the year 1982 17th october, l ‘ve all relevant documents you can ever imagine, l’ve been the Greek consulate severaly, they are just been funny in their own way, they tell me that my parents are not of Greek origin yes! But they studied in athens, l also attend primary school in 3rd kalithea, metamorphosis street, the whole system is a litle bit egregious, l don’t know if you would agree with me?, my dear reader l implore your good spirit, & your good office to see how you can issue me Greek citizenship, for l so much desire the passport, l will be most gratefull if my plea is given proper attention, l want to thank you as l will be in anticipation of your prompt and favourable response, l pray it should be granted me.

Kat Reply:

Being of Greek origin means the person descends from ancestors of Greek blood (jus sanguinis). It has nothing to do with country of birth or place of study.

Therefore, I do not agree with you. You are not eligible for Greek citizenship or a passport under Greek origin, and the Greek consulate is giving you the correct answer.

  Alex wrote @ January 28th, 2013 at 21:33

Hi,

I was borin in Canada in 1985 and was wondering if it is possible to obtain dual Greek/Cdn citizenship through my Grandmother who was born in Greece. She currently is living in Canada as a Canadian citizen only, but she has her Greek birth certificate available. I originally tried to obtain EU citizenship through my mother who was born in Italy, but apparently I cannot do it because she became a Canadian at the time of my birth. So that is the reason why I am trying to figure out if I can go through my Grandmother instead. I look forward to your reply.

Thanks,
Alex

Kat Reply:

Look at the fourth bullet in the article above, click the link and follow the step-by-step instructions.

  Pablo wrote @ February 18th, 2013 at 12:13

Hi,
I am originaly coming from Chile but have beeing working in Madrid for almost 10 years.But i am not EU citizen.I have daughter in Greece, born and living in greece…but i am not with her mother..do i have to marry her in order to get greek citizenship and how long i have to be in this maragge? And if i dont what can i do getting citizenship or some kind of visa?

Thank you,
Pablo

Kat Reply:

This question has already been asked and answered, both in the article above and previous comments.

  irene wrote @ February 18th, 2013 at 15:55

hi there,
my friend, who’s origin is Armenian was born in Azerbaijan. something happening between these countries for many years and azerbijanian authorities are not willing to issue a birth certificate (nor apostille it). she has got permanent resident permit in greece as she is a parent of a greek citizen. is there are any way to get a greek citizenship without a birth certificate. please help, any information would be much appreciated. thank you. irene

Kat Reply:

Greek citizenship is not being granted to any foreigners of non-Greek origin, as it says in the section, “Challenge to New Greek Citizenship Code.” Therefore, it is pointless at this time to inquire about how to apply, with or without a birth certificate, in addition to everything listed in the “Greek citizenship via naturalization” article. If the law changes in the future, she can inquire at the mayor’s office or citizenship office.

[...] Greece, for instance. According to the site Living in Greece, “For foreigners of no Greek origin who have long-term residency in Greece… [m]arriage [...]

  Paul wrote @ October 9th, 2013 at 17:22

kindly am asking for the help. have got six years in greece while holding the residence permit stay in greece. and now i need to aply for a geek greek passport. can it be possible for me to aply

Kat Reply:

To get a Greek passport, you need to qualify and apply for Greek citizenship. It takes much more than holding a residence permit to acquire Greek citizenship. Click the link for ‘Naturalization’ in the above article’s bulleted list.

The article also says in the second paragraph that Greek citizenship is not being granted to foreigners at the moment, only persons of Greek origin/ancestry/descent (jus sanguinis).

  Yannis wrote @ May 21st, 2014 at 14:12

My name is Ioannis Attallah, I am 13 and half years old and I would like to know if I’m eligible for The Greek Citizenship.

I was born in Greece, Athens in 2000. My biological father, Panayotis Attallah, is born in Egypt, permanent resident of England (British passport holder) but Greek by descent and origin. My mother, at the time of my birth was a resident of the Republic of Uzbekistan but after she got married to Lebanese national in 2007 was granted a Lebanese passport.

The nationality law of Lebanon only allows a man (and not a woman) to pass Lebanese nationality to thier children so my mother is not eligible to obtain for me Lebanese passport. As well, I can not get adopted by my Lebanese step- father unless my biological father deceased or Im registered as an abandoned child.

My biological father can neither pass me his British citizenship because they were not married with my mother at the time of my birth. British Nationality law says ”If you were born before July 2006, your father’s British nationality will pass to you only if he was married to your mother at any time”.

At present time I don’t have any citizenship or passport. I would appreciate if you could give me any option, advice, or just reply on my message.

Thank you
Yannis

Kat Reply:

In a word, no.

- As it says in the first bullet of the list above, you must be born in Greece to a parent who was a Greek citizen at the time of your birth; neither of your parents meets that requirement.
- As it says in the fourth bullet, your father must have been born in Greece for you to stake a claim via ancestry; he was not. Therefore, you are not eligible for Greek citizenship or a Greek passport.

If there are special circumstances you failed to disclose, I recommend consulting staff at the nearest Greek embassy/consulate. I do not represent or work for the Greek government, but my taxes pay for them to help you.

  Kat wrote @ May 22nd, 2014 at 18:30

Note to Everyone:

Due to 95 percent of people asking questions already answered in the article above and disrespecting my time, I closed this post to all comments and questions on February 18, 2013.

If you have a question:
a) Read the article and comments. Sounds obvious but many don’t.
b) Contact the Greek consulate/embassy nearest you, if you are outside Greece.
c) Contact city hall nearest your residence or the citizenship office, if you are in Greece.
I do NOT recommend hiring a lawyer, who are notorious for plagiarizing my website, charging money for so-called expertise and netting no results.

The information can only help you if you pay attention and help yourself.

If you ignore this message and find a different article with comments open, I will:
– Direct you back to this message;
– Transfer your comment to this post but not answer;
– Delete your question, per my policy.

I run the Twitter news feed, maintain this website and answer questions in my unpaid spare time, so it needs to be used wisely. Thank you!

Sorry, comments are closed at this time.