Has anyone gone through the simplified naturalization precedure?

Have you tried e-mailing the Slovak National archives and inquire, I'm sure they must have a contact number?  I know the Hungarian archives have older records, not modern day Hungary ones. I got one of mine from the Embassy, ages ago, though it took forever.  You could e-mail or call them too, and ask about the time and cost.


No, I haven't contacted them directly. I found an intermediary who can help. It's already tough enough trying to learn Hungarian. Imagine Slovak too!! I would go crazy.

He said last week that he was having some health problems right now... anyway, I'll give him a chance to get it for me. If doesn't produce, then I'll try to do it myself.

I was hoping there were some peeps in here descended from modern day Slovakia.

In case you need it.  On Facebook/Online there is a group called Hungarian Exchange, (admin. Nick Gombash),  They answer a million and one :-) questions on all topics specially genealogy.  They have been a great help in supplying information, etc.. to people.  They also help out with translations.  Thought I would pass it along.  :-)

wow.. thanks!

I see a lot of discussion on there.

Your very welcome.  :)

Yes, they asked me to translate my marriage certification. The other documents you can pay someone to do it, or if it is registered in Budapest, no need. The other option, I found out was if you do your naturalization with passport, they do a lot of the work for you. But then again with all the problems I was having, I just e-mailed everything+ I had, in English too, and they didn't say anything about translating them, so I guess depending on which consulate and who handles the case, it's probably different. Still waiting for my reply, their deadline is December to respond.

Hi everyone, I got confirmation from the consulate via email last month that they received verification of my citizenship. I am expecting to have my birth certificate and passport in hand within the next 6 weeks. I'll update soon.

In July I interviewed at the New York consulate and they said I spoke the language well enough and would submit my application to Budapest. I emailed them this week after 3.5 months and they responded that the application was pending but that I need to re-interview...has this ever happened to anybody? I am completely out of practice of the language and am in full panic mode.

Sounds like we should have all applied years ago.  This is becoming more common. :(

I found this interesting to read.
My American born son received his Hungarian citizenship 15 years back or so.
His father was born in Hungary and is a Hu citizen, that's basically how our son got his HU citizenship.
Our son married a HU citizen later in Hungary.
Brought her to the US where they later divorced.
I went through some major hassles getting my resident permit to stay in HU with my husband, even though we have been married for nearly 40 years and our son in a HU citizen.
While running around the city collecting information on my immigration status we found records of our son's marriage here in HU.( Sort of weird that they first rejected me for a resident permit when they clearly saw they had excepted me as the mother of a citizen and had it on paper)
He is now divorced from his first wife and now married to a Japanese national.
What I found sort of disturbing is although he is legally divorced in the states in HU he is still considered married to his first wife.
Not sure if it is because they both are HU citizens or if it is just a HU thing to make life harder.
I know he should go into a HU embassy or call them on how to file legal divorce papers from his first wife so that he is not arrested for bigamy if he ever visits us in HU or if his ex could have any legal claim in the future.
Just thought I would share the marriage info we found out. You must file papers in both countries it seems if you are a dual citizen or the laws of the land can get the best of you.
I am also not clear on if people can claim HU citizenship through grandparents if the grandparents were born pre WW11. I have heard something to the effect that dates before 1945 do not count towards connections to relations in HU, After the war the rules changed.
Not sure, would be interesting to know.I have some family connections to HU and Poland, my father was born in Poland but pre WW11.

Hello Marilyn
Interesting experience.  Seems these days nothing is really clear.  Chasing papers and no guarantees.  Maybe because this is post-election?  Keep us updated.   I will attempt my second time in the new year at a new consulate in a different country.  Those lucky Ukrainians that grabbed it in the early days.
Pre1945 you had to declare Hungarian citz and give up Polish Czech etc.  Most consul workers aren't even sure of the rules.

Thanks for the reply.
My dad was born in Poland in 1921, went through Ellis Island at age 7 or so.
Last year I visited the small mountain village where we traced back our family to the mid 1770's.
Met some cousins that are still living in the area and a few who's parents or grandparents also immigrated to the US in the early 1900's.
Very interesting but i will probably let it pass, trying to find out more about Polish citizenship.
I am getting too old to hassle with paperwork, running around to no real end. Not interested in working in the EU or moving to Poland.
I must admit though, it was a very nice experience to see where half my family roots were from, to find out more about being a "Ruysn". found we are part of a small ethnic group that is scattered all over eastern Europe.
Have family roots in HU, SK, PO and Ukraine.
Funny though it took me half a lifetime to finally figure out the correct location and spelling of my dad's village. Those log heads at Ellis Island really did a rotten job of writing down names and addresses.

As promised, an update: according to the date on the formal citizenship document, my paperwork was fully processed on the Hungarian side of things within about three months earlier this year. Notification to me from the consulate was a few weeks after that. To answer the original poster's questions on language skills, I speak and understand very basic Hungarian that I learned as an adult. I completed the forms and CV myself, but had a native speaker check things over for me. It was a lot of work to prepare the all forms and chain-of-descent documentation (back to great-grandparents), but the consular staff was super helpful and efficient moving things along once I was ready to begin the process. Happy to answer any questions if people have them.

Marilyn.  That is wonderful!
I am curious why that have that long 9 month period.  I will try again next year.  I will have to study again.  I did hear from ombudsman and they are still investigating why I did not get my citizenship. Keep us updated.

I thought you had to write the CV out by hand when you made the application. Was that in fact the case? If so, did you have to memorize it or could you consult a copy?

Another question: when you're going back to old documents, misspellings, minor name changes and other small inconsistencies start to creep in. Did you have these sorts of issues in your documents? If so, did they create any problems?

As an aside, when I asked the local consulate about the procedure, they did suggest total processing time would be shorter if the application was submitted in Budapest directly, not through the consulate.

I really don't know much about trying to become a HU citizen, I only wanted a long term resident permit.
I really have no interest in ever becoming a HU citizen.
My husband and son are both US/HU citizens and honestly in our experience being a HU citizen has no extra bonuses for either of them.
Ok, they can get through passport control faster at the airport, maybe and vote but that's not a biggie for either of them.
Our son lives in the US and has no plans to ever come back to HU to live or even to visit.
Suppose it depends on what country you come from if HU citizenship is a step up for the hassles or not.
For our son, my husband did all the paperwork for him, written out in Hungarian with the US embassy in Calif.
They were very helpful, more so then the immigration office in Budapest is.
Son got his citizenship a long time back, things may of changed since then, it was over 15 to 18 years ago for him.
I personally think the people working at a HU embassy outside of HU are more helpful then those working at immigration in HU.

Yes, the consul was very helpful, and I'm concerned Budapest bureaucrats might be less so. I just read your post on the other thread!

(No doubt the attraction of Hungarian citizenship for many is the ability to live and work and retire anywhere in Europe, not just Hungary.)

Hate to always mad mouth officials in HU but... it seems they want kick backs out under the table tips to actually do anything.
I know something was fishy when we went to immigration in Budapest. most people had a lawyer with them, several attorneys came in holding huge thick folders for groups of people.
Once when we went it to the office we just turned around and came back another day. The place literally had 50 to 60 Chinese people standing crowed inside with a few lawyers and their huge folders. Kick back time.
very disappointing experience, we refused to play their get rich quick game and they made us suffer for it.
After that experience I really sort of hoped they would turn me away because I dislike living around crooks.
Happens in every country but I never actually saw it up front and so personal before, they are running wild there.

I did not want to be quite that explicit, but of course that is my concern as well. Those of us who haven't grown up in that type of society tend to react very badly when we encounter those sorts of officials. It's a problem that's no doubt connected with the strengthening of the language requirement. My guess is that ultimately they'll introduce some sort of standardized test to replace the ad hoc language appraisal by the official who takes your application. Giving an official that sort of discretion is just an invitation for trouble.

zif: I completed my forms before the appointment, including the CV, and I haven't heard anything about writing the CV on the spot (which would seem to be very time consuming in any case). Yes, name changes are inevitable, and my case had them, but they didn't cause any problem. Family names often have the older, non-standard spellings even in Hungary, and given names were regularly anglicized on arrival in the USA. This didn't pose a problem for me, perhaps because everything else (e.g. dates and places of birth, etc.) matches up. If you have a solid document trail, i.e. official birth and marriage certificates all the way back, you should be in good shape.

As for the processing time, it only took three months, submitted through a consulate. It's tough to imagine a faster (and certainly not an easier) experience in Budapest.

Thank you for the helpful information! That it took just three months is amazing; I was expecting a six- to eight-month wait.

The consul certainly gave me the impression that I'd have to write out the CV on the spot, with longer being better than shorter, and narrative form better than bullet form. But small consulates like the one near me no doubt receive very few of these applications, so they may not be too familiar with the procedure.

I do have a complete official document trail back to the 1880s, but since my grandparents could not read or write, the family names were somewhat murdered on one birth certificate. Nonetheless, if Hungarian officials use common sense of course they can see that the names are really the same. It'd take a court proceeding to correct the spellings, and I've been debating whether to incur that cost and hassle.

Just an update for anyone interested.  Missed a certified package from Hungary today. Going to try to pick it up at the post office this afternoon or tomorrow morning. I'm not sure if it is going to be good news or bad news on my duel citizenship. Since I posted last I even called Hungary a few times and spoke with the immigration (lady) caseworker.  She seemed very understanding as to my (born out of wedlock) issue, and did say she could process it in my mother's name only, (the short route), or it would have to go the the department of justice for review and decision.  I told her to just do it with my mother's maiden name on my Hungarian birth certificate.  Though she kindly offered to do a quick check in the other direction.  Anyway, I'm keeping my fingers crossed.  I could really use some good news, especially since I've been waiting and working on this since October of 2013.. btw..hate to say this but the Hungarian consulate here in the U.S. didn't seem to have a clue. One consulate leaves, the other come in and hence the chaos begins....   :unsure

I really hope you get your paperwork, best of luck and all.

Hello everyone;

     I have Hungarian decent by my great grandparents on my fathers side. I have all the paperwork now, just having to learn Hungarian and in the process of getting all the paperwork translated from English to Hungarian. They mentioned that I needed to have a English copy and a Hungarian copy is this correct? Also what is the basic Hungarian they will allow you to speak? I'm starting to learn Hungarian again, as I learned it as a small child but have forgotten it over the years. Any information would be very helpful. If you would rather email vs post you can via my email brittanypht[at]gmail.com. I can't wait to be able to get my citizenship so I can go and find my family if there are some that are still alive near Mad, Hungary; Zemplen County; as well as live in Hungary. Thank you in advance, Brittany

weather :

...... I can't wait to be able to get my citizenship so I can go and find my family if there are some that are still alive near Mad, Hungary; Zemplen County; as well as live in Hungary. Thank you in advance, Brittany

You can visit them anyway!

I don't know if I will be able to just come visit. How much money is required at the boarder and do I need paperwork or something for the Schengen stuff coming from the United States? Also I was turned away at the UK boarder to see my future wife because I didn't have the right amount of cash in hand at the boarder and paperwork to show that I was going to return home, but didn't get any restrictions other than to get a visitor visa before coming back. Another reason I want to get my hungarian citizenship, so I don't have restrictions to what countries I can go to and what I can't.

weather :

I don't know if I will be able to just come visit. How much money is required at the boarder and do I need paperwork or something for the Schengen stuff coming from the United States? Also I was turned away at the UK boarder to see my future wife because I didn't have the right amount of cash in hand at the boarder and paperwork to show that I was going to return home, but didn't get any restrictions other than to get a visitor visa before coming back. Another reason I want to get my hungarian citizenship, so I don't have restrictions to what countries I can go to and what I can't.

If you are a US citizen, you don't need a visa so that should be no problem so long as you are not on some kind of watch list.   They don't usually check your cash or credit as far as I know at the borders of the EU if you are a US citizen. Presumably you would have at least a few hundred USD and a credit card. That should be enough.  You can always fly into say another country like Austria, then catch the bus or the train to Budapest.

That seems strange that they would turn you away at the boarder. Do you have a US passport, did you only have a one way ticket?
I have traveled back and forth to and from Europe many times and never had to show $.

My DIL was detained in Las Vegas after coming in on a flight from Japan.
At the time she was not legally married to my son and although she had never overstayed her visits she did come over 3 times in one year.
They held her at the airport , grilled her for over 3 hours before letting her go. They wouldn't let my son even talk to her before asking questions.
It was so upsetting that they decided to just go ahead and get legally married in Vegas.
Good luck with all your paperwork.


Here is a link where you can have all information about naturalization.

http://www.bmbah.hu/jomla/index.php?opt … mp;lang=en

Good Luck and Merry Xmas.

Hi all!

I just wanted to say that this is a great and very informative thread.

Curious about the simplified interview. What sort of questions did they ask?

I have a basic knowledge, how to order food, give directions...but unaware of what they may ask in an interview.

Probably taking the interview here in the USA...


If you are capable of completing the paperwork and CV, and you have basic conversational skills, I think you will be fine. It's also important to note that this isn't an all-or-nothing, one-shot process. You can simply reapply (and it costs nothing) once you've improved your spoken Hungarian a bit, if necessary. But again, based on your description of your skills it sounds like you will have no problem.

I can't speak first-hand yet, but my own working assumption is that I should be prepared to answer basic questions about the information on the application and CV. That means special attention to vocabulary about life events: family, work, education, birth, death, immigration, citizenship, dates and such. And it means not spending much time memorizing lists of foods and animals and clothes and body parts and such.

But keep in mind that several posts on this forum have suggested that the language policy has tightened somewhat in the past several months, though precisely what that means in practice isn't clear.

Thank you for your reply Zif!

I have four great grandparents (two from my mothers and two from my fathers size) were born in the 1880's and came to Cleveland Ohio in the early 1900's and married soon thereafter.

Three were born in modern Slovakia (Medzev, Kosice), and one was born in Hungary. So I have four options to apply for simplified citizenship.

I was thinking that the best choice would be the one born in Hungary (and also where I got my last name). However, I'm still waiting on the birth certificate from Hungary. I've already secured the other three from Slovakia.

I'd like to apply as soon as possible and set up the appointment. Would there be any advantage in using one relative over another?

I have a similar question to Jesperss. One of my great grandparents was born in Moravia, which is now a part of the Czech Republic. I know the exact town they were born so am just waiting for their birth records. This would work wouldn't it?

I would think that if you want HU citizenship then sing the relation actually born in Hungary would make paperwork a bit easier.

However, from what I have read, it is also anyone born in what was the Austro-Hungarian Empire, which Moravia was a part of. This is correct right?

I heard ages ago that anyone born pre WW11 was not considered because of land boarder issues.
I really don't know much more about that.
If that were not true then I would be a Hungarian citizen perhaps since my father was born in 1921 in Gorlice area of now Poland.My grandmother and all relations on that side date back to the mid 1750's, all being born in a village that was part of Austria_Hungary. I think it was called, Galicia.
I  visited that area in the summer of 2013 and met relations that have always lived there. Even met a cousin who was born in Budapest and her mother is still living in HU. It was very interesting but in the long run, although I have never been a nationalist person in any way, I realized by seeing how different I am from my family that after all, I am and always will just be an American.
My roots go back a very long way to this small area on my father's side of the family.
A cousin did allot of serious research on this, he has records and did a whole genelogy thing for all of us at our reunion.
Most of my family left the area by force in 1939.
it would however be interesting to actually know if the records are not valid for grandparents etc. that were born before WW11.

It's important not to confuse the regular naturalization procedure with the new Simplified Naturalization procedure. They are different.

Under the Simplified Naturalization procedure, you must have at least one ancestor who was a Hungarian citizen, and you must know Hungarian.

In general, those born in the Hungarian-ruled part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire were Hungarian citizens. So, for example, if your gf or ggf was born in the 1880s in the part of modern Slovakia then ruled by Hungary, he would normally have been a Hungarian citizen, and you should qualify for Simplified Naturalization, provided your Hungarian is good enough and you have a proper trail of documents showing descent from your ancestor.

While legally you should qualify whether your ancestor was born in modern-day Hungary or in the territories Hungary lost after World War I, common sense says your application will be cleaner and probably processed more expeditiously if you produce birth documents from a line of descent arising in modern-day Hungary.

Thank you for the information.
My husband and son are both HU citizens, husband born in Hungary.
My father was born in what is now Poland.
I am a bit too old to care about getting dual citizenship, will just be an "American".
I doubt I could seriously ever learn Polish let alone Hungarian well enough to pass any tests.
Guess basic Spanish won't help me out!
I was just wondering about people in general who's relations were born pre-WW11 and land boarder issues for citizenship.

Hi All,

There's lots of great information on this thread - thanks for keeping it going!  I wonder if anyone who has gone through the process can give me a bit of info about the simplified naturalization procedure.

My maternal grandparents are Hungarian and I have all the necessary documents (my grandfather's birth certificate, etc.), though I don't know where to get the English documents translated.  I'm a Canadian currently living in Budapest (on a residency permit as I work here).  Is it true that consulates offer translation services?  (Specifically, if anyone knows, the one in Toronto, or the Embassy in Ottawa).  I'm hoping to sort out all my paperwork when I am in Canada this summer. 

Also, is it easier to apply in your home country than in Hungary?  I'm still in the process of learning Hungarian and I'm planning to continue to do so indefinitely until I am truly fluent, but I'm a bit nervous about what level of fluency they expect.  (I've been taking classes for 6 months and will continue to do so for at least another 18 months).  I asked what I would need to apply when I was at the immigration office in Budapest back in September and the woman said, "Perfect Hungarian" (and I was only asking about the forms!).  My friends here said she was likely just being rude and they've heard differently.  I know it would be faster to apply here in Hungary, but would anyone recommend applying in Ottawa instead?


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