german blood visa question-please help

Hello everyone

Im new here and I figured the best way of asking about an enquiry I have would be with people who hopefully know about all the visa mumbo jumbo.

Im a chilean citizen but my great grandfather was german. I do know that I am entitled to apply for the german residence under the "jus sanguinis" logic. Here is how my family tree breaks down:

My great grandfather came from Germany to Chile. He had my grandfather who had my father and hence I was born. Every child was legitimate and born after weddings, but neither my grandfather nor my father did any paperwork whatsoever so they could get the german residence. All three of them passed away.

I have paperwork that shows my great grandfathers trip from liverpool to south america by boat in the early 20th century. That paper states he was german. I also have an oficial document from my goverment which says my great grandfather arrived in Chile, claiming he was german.

There is no document, though, which proves my great grandfather registered in any german consulate. There was a chance there was one in Bolivia, but I already called the consulate there and all the documents there were either destroyed or burnt.

Would the Bundesverwaltungsamt deny me the residence? How long does it take for the application to be approved?

Any help would be appretiated

Take care guys.

Update: reading the requirements by germany to obtain the documents I found out that germans where legally required to register in the consulate every 10 years. He left germany in 1909, and the law expired in 1903 or 1913 (the official pdf of the embassy has a mistake). Since there is no 10 year gap between 1909 and 1913, he was not required to register. So should I still be entitled for the visa?

It depends on whether you can prove that your grandfather was German.
Probably you need some kind of paper from a German authority saying so, I doubt that the mentioned papers from other sources suffice. But in the end, the German authorities decide this, so it would be best to ask them.

I found the relevant German regulation -  § 5 StAG (Staatsangehörigkeitsgesetz):
"Durch die Erklärung, deutscher Staatsangehöriger werden zu wollen, erwirbt das vor dem 1. Juli 1993 geborene Kind eines deutschen Vaters und einer ausländischen Mutter die deutsche Staatsangehörigkeit, wenn
1. eine nach den deutschen Gesetzen wirksame Anerkennung oder Feststellung der Vaterschaft erfolgt ist,
2. das Kind seit drei Jahren rechtmäßig seinen gewöhnlichen Aufenthalt im Bundesgebiet hat und
3. die Erklärung vor der Vollendung des 23. Lebensjahres abgegeben wird."

Rough translation:
If you were born before 1.July.1993 as child of a German father and a foreign mother, you can become German citizen, if
1. he formally accepted being your father, or a court ruled he is.
2. you legally lived in Germany for three years.
3. you applied for citizenship before you turn 23 years old.

Seems you are out of luck here: German grandfather is not enough, and if you're born in or before 1993, you are over 23 years now.

Being born of parents who were German at the time will get one citizenship, even if they had immigrated elsewhere. If just the father was German then restrictions apply as Beppi already posted. Going back to a grandparent or great grandparent doesn't work. A possible exception -  you can show that your ancestor left because of being deported or fearing for their lives from Nazi prosecution. I'm not sure if this would actually apply as far back as a great grandparent and from your timeline it sounds like he left before the Nazis era anyway. I don't see any grounds that you would have a valid claim...

Hi guys

thanks for the info. I have been checking and I dont need to get the consulate papers. Yayy!!!!!

However, seems like I do need my great grandfathers birth certificate or baptism certificate. Any idea how I can get this when the guy was born in 1889, over 100 years ago? My family says he did not only live in Leipzig but he was also born there, but I suspect they coud be mistaken.

God. Sometimes I just want to go to heaven and scold my dad and granddad.

What do you need your grandfather's birth certificate for? (Did the embassy tell you there is a way to get German citizenship with that? And if so, how?)
If you know which birth registry issued your grandfather's birth certificate - and the records there were not since destroyed by fire or the two world wars,  you can get a certified copy from them.
If you don't know which registry it was, you could ask all in and around Leipzig (this would probably require a trip there).
If he was not born in Leipzig, the only way is visiting all registries in Germany - a task that will take you many months. You could also engage a private detective for this (seriously!).
If the archives were destroyed, you are oit of luck and will not get a copy.

I need some sort of GERMAN document that states he was german. It seems like a document from the chilean goverment saying he claimed to be german is not good enough.

I will copy the statement of the german embassy in Chile, regarding cases like mine. Too lazy to manually translate it to english so Im using google translate:

"Stay not entitled abroad" (Legitimationsloser Auslandsaufenthalt)
for people who emigrated from Germany before the year 1904:
This cause of loss of German nationality was provided by § 21 of the Act
nationality and belonging to the German Empire of 01.06.1870 (§ 21
Reichsgesetz Erwerbung und die über den Verlust und der Reichsbank Staatsangehörigkeit of 01/06/1870,) and applied to the replacement of this law by the RuStAG (Reichsbank und Staatsangehörigkeitsgesetz) on 01.01.1914, after which time the "stay not entitled abroad "no longer grounds for loss of nationality German. Despite its age this law is still of great importance in many cases where applicants intend to deduct the German nationality of an ancestor who arrived in Chile before 1904. In these cases the prospects success of the application depends mainly from this ancestor, especially if it was registered in the consular identification of the German authorities in their new country of residence.


If your immigrant ancestor entered the Chile after 1903 (when the Consular registration was no longer compulsory license plates) must be present -to start the paperwork and for a first assessment - birth certificate German of his ancestor and / or any other German document that is in your power stating that his ancestor was a German national. such other Documents can be for example: former German passport of his ancestor,baptismal certificate, German military documents, vaccination certificate, etc., which should be in their power"

As I said, I have a meeting with the embassy on the 13th. At the same time, Im going to the "chilean-german asociation" to see birth records there. Finally, I found the possible registration of my great grandfather in the army records. They have someone with that last name, serving in 1906. This person was actually from Leipzig. No birth date is given. If it is my great grandfather, he would have been around 17 at the time, which I have no idea if it is a proper age. Does anyone know what LDA could stand for?

That is where I am right now. Any suggestions are appretiated :D. I will keep you informed on how everything is working out.

take care.

Hmmm, I will be very interested to hear how this all developes. Germans are known for keeping good records, so if you know where and when he was born there is probably some record of it in the local town. It can be that someone who left back then did not lose his German citizenship for having left Germany. I left America and am still American. BUT taking a foreign citizenship or serving in a foreign army will often be grounds for one losing citizenship. Or maybe they will assume your grandfather had German citizenship until he died. That still doesn't mean you will be considered German unless the following decendents down to your father are also considered German. And children born out of the country, never having lived in Germany, especially to a non-German mother, even if married to a German, might not  meet the requirements. To sum it up, just proving your Great Grandfather was German, even until he died is unlikely to get you a German passport. But if it happens we will all be happy and interested to hear how it all works... Just don't get your hopes up too high.

... and you will have to renoince you Chilean (and any other) citizenship to become German - no double citizenship allowed for people who acquire the citizenship in adulthood!

Beppi, that is only a general rule with a number of exceptions. It depends on what country one comes from. A friend of mine got a German passport around 12 years ago at the age of 38 without giving up his Argentinian one. This was based on the past history of military repression in Argentina. Chile also had such repression... Not sure of the current status given to Chile but many countries with troubled political systems are exempted.

The other thing is that if one gets citizenship based on their father having been German then they do NOT have to give up other passport(s). Another friend of mine got a German passport 5 years ago at the age of 50 and still openly holds Canadian and Australian ones as well. His father was a German Jew and had to flee the country as a boy. The theory is that he was entitled to German citizenship by birthright rather than by being nationalized, which is a deciding factor.

Update on the process:

I just came home from a place called the Chilean-German league and they didn`t give me any paperwork that I could use. They told me to ask the german embassy if they have any consulate documentation from him, which is unlikely since a relative already asked them this and he didnt get anything. I have a meeting with people in the embassy on the 13th of September.

I have a few options left: either visit my grandfather's brother and see if he has any documents or pay an investigator. The most important paper I need is a german one that says my great grandfather was german. I was told that the german paper I have only has the last name, but no first name, so there is a chance that is not him.

This is getting very annoying since I do have papers that claim he was german, but none of them are german per se.

On the 14th I will give you people an update on how everything is working out.

Take care

ps: Chile allows double citizenship

I'm still wondering if this is worth the effort. Do you have documentation saying you will be eligible for German Citizenship even if your Great Grandfather can be proven to have been German? As I have posted before, all of the information I find suggests otherwise. Are you relying on something official from the German government or what?

And as far as the documentation about your great grandfather, I wonder why you would assume anyone would have such a thing? Birth records are registered and should be available in the city archives where he was born. You need to have someone investigate there and get a copy of their records. They might also have some kind of record of him immigrating but I doubt any other organization or office like a consulate will have records of visas or such immigration papers from so far back.

That's exactly what I said: Only the birth register of Leipzig (or wherever he was born) would still have a document you need that is accepted by the German authorities - if it wasn't destroyed by a calamity.
I also wonder how a German Great-grandfather can give you German citizenship when all regulation we found says even a German grandfather isn't enough. Could you please tell us - we also want to learn!

Hello everyone

I would like to give you an update of the process. For those who are still asking me if the process is doable, let me say, AGAN, it is doable. I already pasted what the document in the embassy says about applying to the german residence based on ancestors, but for the sake of it, I will give you all a link to the official file of the embassy which proves the process is allowed to do. I do have to say that, depending on the date of immigration, the laws and rules could be different, so just because someone had an ancestor who travelled from Germany, does not mean they are entitled to the residence. Some requirements must be met and that has to be studied person by person. I am also giving you all a link to a list of examples, based on the different possible dates of emmigration. Everything is in spanish, so you will have to use google translator. I dont wish to sound rude, but most of the questions you are asking have already been answered and can be answered from reading the files, so I wont answer questions like: "Can it be done?" "Are you sure Germany allows it?", etc. … sch_ES.pdf … ung_ES.pdf

I went to the embassy and they gave me a list of documents to gather. I send an email again to the embassy a week after, copied to my uncle, who is also trying to do the paperwork and SURPRISE. He called me telling me he had my great grandfather's birth certificate, all across from Germany!!!!! :D. He also told me it was a pain in the ass to get. It is in a dialect called stüterlin, which is supposed to be old german and, along with the handwritting of the time, makes it hard to read, but the hell with it. It is an official document from Germany and that is all I care about, LOL. My uncle even has the certificate of a cemetary that proves my great grandfather is buried there, haha.

Next step: Getting a certificate of "not applying to chilean residence". This can be obtained in the Chilean Ministry of Foreign affairs. Im pretty sure my great Grandfather never got the chilean residence, so it will be a piece of cake. After that, I need to go to the embassy again and have them double check everything is ok. If so, I will officialy apply for the residence.

The only worry is that My great grandfather traveled at some point from England to South America, obviously as part of the route from Germany. I am worried that the German goverment could be picky enough to ask me to prove my great grandfather was not 10 years or more outside germany, which is a requirement for the residence to be aquired. This law expired in 1903. When I went to the embassy I asked this and the lady from the counter said she doubts the german goverment will be so picky, but you never know.

Again, I will keep you all updated. This is fun lol. Lets hope this all works out

Take care :)

Residency? I thought you wanted to apply for citizenship???
These are two very differen things. Residency (the right to live in Germany, if only for a time) is much easier than citizenship (the act of becoming German). As far as I know never comes by ancestry - but I am willing to learn something new here, too!

Well, it is no surprise that a birth certificate could be found since unless damaged in a fire (or war) then city records should be available. Not sure why this should be a pain in the ass, one just needs to get a photo copy from the archive. Could be a bit more difficult for an official translation but there are no dialects that were used at the turn of the century that are no longer understood, nor the script used. Maybe not younger people but anyone over 60 or 70 years old would be familiar with such script. It does appear that a direct paternal line could provide German citizenship even back to a great grandparent.

A problem could be if your Great grandfather voluntarily obtained a foreign citizenship, which would have cancelled his Germany one. One can only speculate but one has to wonder how he managed to stay and live in Chile without doing so? His son and grandson were probably considered Chilean citizens due to being born there, rather than obtaining citizenship by application. But key would be if he applied and got Chilean citizenship – if so, he and his decedents would not be considered German.

Another question is if any of the paternal line voluntarily joined a (non-German) military. This would also cancel the citizenship of that person and the decedents. Forced military conscription doesn’t count. Thus if one served in the Chilean military because they were required to, then it doesn’t matter. 

I think if they go so far as to ask for proof of all of these decedents military service and how it came about and whether any of them applied for a non-German citizenship rather than being given it by right of birthplace – this will be a REAL pain in the ass.

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