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Getting dual citizenship by descent

My name is Brad Fontanesi I live in Los Angeles, I am at the beginning of the process to obtain dual citizenship and am looking for someone to speak with who has been through the this. Also if there are any recommended services which help facilitate the process.

Hi bradfontanesi,

Welcome to Expat.com :)

Your topic is now on the Los Angeles forum for more interaction in english with other members.

Please feel free to go through other topics on the forum, you might find some relevant information.

Have a nice day,

Priscilla  :cheers:

Brad:

I thought of becoming a dual citizen too: but on second thought I convinced my wife not to.

You decide on your case, that is your freedom but I havent researched yet as to "how does the U.S. looked upon and what are the legal ramifications of being a dual citizen."  My primary thought on this issue is:  when I took the oath of citizenship it is very clear: "...that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen..."

"I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty, of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God."

I still love my native country. But American is now my adopted country. It is home to my children.  They dont know my native country.  They love to come and visit and meet their cousins. But the U.S. will and IS their country.  For me taking a dual citizenship is like abandoning the oath I took.  An oath is solemn: Like the oath I made to my wife on our wedding day: "To have and to hold, for richer or poorer; in sickness and in health; till death do us part."

I am not becoming a dual citizen for such reasons.  Also my son served proudly in the United States Navy and saw action at the Persian Gulf and Afghanistan. I will forever be proud of him and the country that accepted me.

Thanks and my very best wishes!

The US government accepts and tolerates the fact of dual citizenship. However, you will need to know some facts about dual citizenship in US:

1)    If you leave the US, you will need to present your US passport when you will return to the US. Showing your foreign passport to any USCIS officer can be seen as requesting the renouncement of US citizenship….Of course, this is an extreme case but be careful.
2)    If within the US territory, you will not be able to receive assistance for your second country in case of major disaster;
3)    If you are visiting your second country, you will not be able to receive any assistance from the US government in case of major disaster;
4)    Being dual citizen might impair you, your spouse and direct family to obtain on some sensitive national security position within the US government;
5)    If the US congress declares war against your naturalized country, the best advice will be to renounce the second citizenship immediately after the declaration and notify the US state department of your intent;
6) Regarding taxation: the US does not care if you are dual citizen. However, check if there is any treaties between both countries. You might end up being double taxed if you decide to retire and live in your naturalized country. In US, many countries have signed treaties and tax agreement in order to avoid double taxation.

I hope these tips help.

oenos :

The US government accepts and tolerates the fact of dual citizenship. However, you will need to know some facts about dual citizenship in US:

1)    If you leave the US, you will need to present your US passport when you will return to the US. Showing your foreign passport to any USCIS officer can be seen as requesting the renouncement of US citizenship….Of course, this is an extreme case but be careful.
2)    If within the US territory, you will not be able to receive assistance for your second country in case of major disaster;
3)    If you are visiting your second country, you will not be able to receive any assistance from the US government in case of major disaster;
4)    Being dual citizen might impair you, your spouse and direct family to obtain on some sensitive national security position within the US government;
5)    If the US congress declares war against your naturalized country, the best advice will be to renounce the second citizenship immediately after the declaration and notify the US state department of your intent;
6) Regarding taxation: the US does not care if you are dual citizen. However, check if there is any treaties between both countries. You might end up being double taxed if you decide to retire and live in your naturalized country. In US, many countries have signed treaties and tax agreement in order to avoid double taxation.

I hope these tips help.

I question the parts of your post which I've highlighted. 

I don't believe (nor ever heard of a case) where a dual citizen successfully renounced citizenship with a USCIS officer at a port of entry.  It is my understanding that renouncement must be formally requested in front of a US diplomatic/consular officer outside the US.

Also, I don't understand why you recommend renouncing citizenship in a time of declared war.  Of what benefit would this be to a presumable non-combatant?

Romaniac

My comments were purely theorical.
However, showing a foreign passport at an US border can be subject to interpretation and can lead to investigation. It previously happened for two US nationals who presented Somalian passport at JFK and were detained for a long time because of these actions under the INA 349. Later on, they were under military juridictions,

Also, showing with clear "intent and conduct" a foreign passport at a US port of entry might lead a person to be part of the TSA no fly list. 101,000 persons have been part of the "club" and many of them are not terrorist at all but for some bureaucratic reason, got for many years, their privilge of flying removed.

As far as act of war against the country where the US born citizen obtained citizenship, it makes sense that the INA 349 can be triggered because the paragraph 2 gives to prosecutors and judges a wide sense of interpretation of the law. It was used against many citizens during WW1 and WW2.

oenos :

My comments were purely theorical.
However, showing a foreign passport at an US border can be subject to interpretation and can lead to investigation. It previously happened for two US nationals who presented Somalian passport at JFK and were detained for a long time because of these actions under the INA 349. Later on, they were under military juridictions,

Also, showing with clear "intent and conduct" a foreign passport at a US port of entry might lead a person to be part of the TSA no fly list. 101,000 persons have been part of the "club" and many of them are not terrorist at all but for some bureaucratic reason, got for many years, their privilge of flying removed.

As far as act of war against the country where the US born citizen obtained citizenship, it makes sense that the INA 349 can be triggered because the paragraph 2 gives to prosecutors and judges a wide sense of interpretation of the law. It was used against many citizens during WW1 and WW2.

I would agree, showing a foreign passport to a USCIS officer will raise some questions, especially if the holder doesn't have a visa or eTA.  The person would really only be questioned to determine if they are in fact a US citizen, and determine why they presented the foreign passport.  It happens sometimes because dual citizens aren't aware of which passport to show.  Considering the OP isn't from a country with ties to terrorism, it's extremely unlikely they would be detained.  Again, they would not be able to renounce citizenship at the port of entry.

I don't quite understand why you are bringing up the no-fly list, that really is not relevant to the topic of obtaining dual citizenship.

Finally, in your reference to WWII and INA349, you failed to mention that many of those that lost citizenship during armed conflict were subsequently reinstated as US citizens, as they were forced to renounce under duress.

While "theory" is great, let's stick to current times and real practices.  Attempting to discourage or scare the OP with far-reaching theory and incomplete anecdotes from 70 years ago really isn't necessary.  If he's made the choice to apply for citizenship, that choice should be respected and only the advice that he asked for is needed.

hello oenos:

my sister is a dual citizen: she is an american citizen and also a filipino citizen (secondary). in the case you mentioned; i find it stupid for them to present a somali passport on their re-entry. why did they not just present their u.s. passport? are they "testing" the immigration officers or what. we travel mostly with our families and my sister would present her u.s. passport upon re-entry.
she goes faster (and why would she present her philippine passport; like the two somalis you mentioned.)

having a dual citizenship (like my sister) is done by people like my sister who continues to own properties in Manila. with her philippine citizenship, she is not subjected to strict foreigner-controlled conditions.  but in the U.S. she is an american citizen.

thanks oenos and all the best to you in life.

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