Spanish Citizenship by Descent (Jus Sanguinis)

Are you eligible?

Spanish Citizenship Through Ancestry: A Pathway to Freedom and Opportunity

Spanish citizenship by descent, also known as Jus sanguinis, is a legal provision that grants citizenship to individuals based on their bloodline or ancestry.
This means that if you have a Spanish parent, grandparent or even great-grandparent, you can claim Spanish citizenship even if you were born outside of Spain.

The process of acquiring Spanish citizenship by descent is not automatic. You will need to go through a series of steps to prove your lineage and meet the requirements set by the Spanish government.

Spanish Citizenship by Descent Spanish citizenship by ancestry jus sanguinis right of blood
Spanish Citizenship by Descent
Obtain Spanish Citizenship through Ancestral roots

What are the benefits of obtaining Spanish citizenship?

Another reason why Spanish citizenship is highly sought after is the capability to get Visa-free travel within the Schengen Area and the potential to obtain a second passport to enhance one’s global mobility. However, Spain does not allow dual citizenship with countries other than Iberian countries.

Therefore, you will need to renounce your former nationality if you acquire Spanish citizenship. You can only obtain a second passport from Spain if you are from Spanish-American countries, such as Andorra, the Philippines, Equatorial Guinea, and Portugal. Sephardic Jews and their descendants can also acquire dual citizenship with their home country.

Who qualifies for Spanish citizenship by descent ?

Citizenship by descent is commonly referred to as “jus sanguinis,” which means “right of blood.” This means that Spanish citizenship can be acquired by individuals who have a parent, grandparent, or even great-grandparent who was born in Spain. However, it is important to note that there are certain conditions that must be met in order to be eligible for Spanish citizenship by descent.

Firstly, the Spanish ancestor must not have renounced their Spanish citizenship at any point in their life. Secondly, the descendants must be able to prove their kinship link to the Spanish ancestor through official documentation such as birth certificates, marriage certificates, and passports.

It is also worth noting that the process of acquiring Spanish citizenship by descent can be a complex and lengthy one, as it involves gathering and submitting various documents, undergoing background checks, and navigating through bureaucratic procedures. Therefore, it is advisable to seek the guidance of a reputable immigration lawyer or specialist to ensure a successful application.

How to apply for the Spanish citizenship by descent?

It is prudent to plan your application for the Spanish citizenship by ancestry program. It is important to ensure that you are fully aware of the steps that must be taken, as well as the documentation that will be required to support your application.


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    What are the Spanish citizenship by descent requirements?

    If you are looking to apply for Spanish citizenship by descent, you will need to gather a number of important documents.

    Firstly, you will need to provide your birth certificate and your parents’ birth certificates. You will also need to provide your parents’ marriage certificate, if applicable.

    Additionally, you will need to provide evidence that your parent or grandparent was a Spanish citizen at the time of your birth, such as their Spanish passport or national identity card.

    In order to apply for Spanish citizenship by descent, you will also need to provide various other documents, including your own passport, proof of residency in Spain (if applicable), and evidence of your ties to Spain, such as a letter explaining your connection to the country.

    It is important to note that the application process for Spanish citizenship by descent can be complex and time-consuming, and it may be helpful to work with an experienced immigration lawyer to ensure that your application is complete and accurate. With the right documents and support, however, you can pursue your goal of obtaining Spanish citizenship and enjoying the many benefits it offers.

    The first fundamental step you must take is to ensure you meet the requirements for Spanish citizenship by descent.

    How to Obtain Spanish Citizenship through Descent?

    To be eligible to obtain Spanish citizenship by ancestry, according to Article 11 of the Spanish Constitutional Law, you can apply for Spanish citizenship by descent if:

    1. Your mother or father is a Spanish national by birth;
    2. Both your parents are Spanish nationals by birth;
    3. One of your grandparents or great-grandparents (going back four generations) was a Spanish national by birth; or
    4. You were adopted by Spanish a national prior to your 18th birthday

    If you are eligible, you must then prepare and complete all the required documents, such as:

    1. Your current passport,
    2. Birth certificate, and residency documentation, if applicable;
    3. Criminal records;
    4. Certificate confirming you have passed the DELE A2 and CCSE exams;
    5. Proof of payment regarding the application fees;
    6. Current census and historic (“padrón”); and
    7. Demonstration of the possession of sufficient economic means

    Please remember that in order to get a Spanish passport and become a citizen in the country, you must also pass two citizenship exams. If you fail any of the tests, you will still have 3 opportunities to retake the exams until you need to pay again.

    The DELE A2 is the basic language test that demonstrates you have a high-enough Spanish level. It is not required if you come from any Latin American country.
    The CCSE is a cultural test about the Spanish government, art, television, culture, and geography. If you studied high school in Spain, this test is not required.

    What is the application process to acquire Spanish citizenship through ancestral roots?

    The application process to obtain Spanish citizenship by ancestry may be complicated for an ill-prepared and ill-advised individual. The following is a simplified breakdown of the application process:

    1. Pay the application fee and submit the documents and application forms
      The first step after you have completed all of the paperwork and meet all of the requirements is to submit your application to the competence authorities. You can submit it in person at the Civil Registrar or online to complete this step. Additionally, you have the option to make the payment online or in person while submitting your documents.
    2. Wait for a response from the government
      Once you have submitted your application, the Spanish government has a full year to legally respond. After one year, if you have not received any response, it will mean that your application has been rejected due to administrative silence. However, you can still request a review by filing an appeal if your application was rejected. Following an appeal, you will receive a response in 3-4 months.
    3. Get an appointment for the oath of allegiance
      If you get an appointment for the flag’s jury after one year of submitting your application or at the same time you file your appeal, you can obtain Spanish citizenship in less than a year and a half. Then you can schedule an appointment for the oath of allegiance not only at the Civil Registry, but also before a Notary Public.
    4. Get your passport and DNI
      Once you complete the oath of allegiance, you can visit the local police station in Spain and finally get your passport and DNI.
    5. Request a concordance certificate.
      Lastly, you will have to request a concordance certificate so that all public and private institutions you registered with your NIE can validate your new ID info. The certificate of concordance is a document that any foreigner who obtains Spanish nationality must request at the end of the process to be able to accredit his/her identification with various public and private institutions.

    Request more information about the Spanish Citizenship by Descent

    If you wish to learn more about Citizenship by Descent, we strongly recommend you reach out to your local Harvey Law Group office here. Our lawyers would be delighted to provide more information about the program details.
    Founded in 1992, Harvey Law Group (HLG) is a leading multinational law firm with offices across Asia, North and South America, Europe, Africa, and the Middle East to cater to your specific needs for immigration and beyond.


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