A noncommercial collection of information about citizenship, dual citizenship and multiple citizenship

[Please refer to How to Read a Country Entry for help interpreting this material. It was produced prior to March 2001 as part of a US government report entitled Citizenship Laws of the World. The accuracy and depth of these country listings varies significantly, and some information may be incorrect. At best, this page presents only part of the story for a particular country. Additional information for this country may be available in Country Information]


CITIZENSHIP: Citizenship laws are based upon the Finnish Citizenship Act of June 28, 1968, amended in 1984.

BY BIRTH: Birth within the territory of Finland does not automatically confer citizenship. The exception is a child who is stateless or whose parents are unknown.

BY DESCENT: Child born in wedlock of a Finnish father, regardless of the child's country of birth. Child born out of wedlock of a Finnish mother, regardless of the child's country of birth.

BY NATURALIZATION: Finnish citizenship may be acquired upon fulfillment of the following conditions: Person has renounced, or will renounce, former citizenship, is over 18 years of age, has continually resided in Finland for five years, has not committed any offenses, and has a means of support. (This does not apply to foreigners who marry Finnish nationals.)

DUAL CITIZENSHIP: NOT RECOGNIZED. Exceptions: Dual citizenship is accepted under these circumstances:

Child acquires Finnish citizenship from one parent and another citizenship from the other parent. Finnish citizen who marries a foreigner and automatically acquires the nationality of the foreign spouse without formal request.

Child born to Finnish parents who becomes a foreign citizen by birth in another country. A child born abroad (as dual citizen) must return to live in Finland before the age of 22 and upon reaching 22 must choose one nationality in order to retain Finnish citizenship.

LOSS OF CITIZENSHIP: Laws concerning automatic revocation of citizenship upon acquiring a new citizenship are conflicting. Finnish citizenship may not be lost by default. Person concerned with dual citizenship should formally make renunciation request.

VOLUNTARY: Voluntary renunciation of Finnish citizenship is permitted by law. Contact the Embassy for details and required paperwork.

INVOLUNTARY: The following are grounds for involuntary loss of Finnish citizenship: Person who acquires a foreign citizenship by enlisting in the service of another country.

ANY QUESTIONS concerning citizenship, or requests for renunciation of citizenship, should be directed to the address below:

Embassy of Finland 3301 Massachusetts Ave., NW Washington, DC 20008

Embassy/Consular Telephone: 202-298-5800 Fax: 202-298-6030



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