Any child born to a U.S. citizen will also receive citizenship, even if the child is born overseas on a military base. However, when it comes to military parents and their children born overseas, they usually have questions about how citizenship works. In this article, we'll review the different ways babies receive their citizenship when born to U.S. citizens overseas.
Here is how citizenship gets approved if the parents are married:
- When both the of parents are U.S. citizens and one of them lived inside the United States prior to the child being born.
- When one of the parents is a U.S. citizen and lived in the United States of a minimum of five years before the birth of the child -- and two of those years were after 14 years of age. For these purposes, if some of that time was spent as an overseas military service member, then this time will serve as "time spent in the United States."
Here's how citizenship gets approved when the parents are not married:
- If the mother is a citizen of the United States and lived a minimum of one year in the United States before the birth of the child.
- If the father is a citizen of the United States and lived a minimum of five years in the United States before the child was born, and two of those years were after 14 years of age. Paternity needs to be established via the laws of the country where the child is and/or via the father's written consent. DNA testing could be involved in this process. The father also needs to say in writing that he will assist the child financially, and citizenship needs to be sought prior to the child turning 18.
Was your child born overseas while you or your spouse were serving in the military? Do you still live overseas and have questions about citizenship? A Tennessee family law attorney that assists military families can help.
Source: FindLaw, "Children born abroad," accessed Aug. 04, 2017