New Citizenship Law in Germany 2023-24

A residence visa is necessary for stays in Germany exceeding 90 days, especially for work, study, or permanent relocation. The German Cabinet has endorsed a proposed bill to streamline citizenship requirements in the “New German Law for Granting Citizenship to Foreigners.” These modifications reduce the qualifying residency period from eight to five years for those residing and working in Germany. Additionally, individuals displaying outstanding work performance or involvement in voluntary activities, possessing proficiency in German, and achieving financial independence may be eligible for citizenship in three years. The legislation ensures automatic German citizenship for children born to foreign parents.

The Ministry said that 12 million foreign nationals are currently in Germany, among which 5.2 million have been living for the last five years.

  • Citizenship by naturalization will be granted after five years of residing in Germany instead of eight years.
  • Naturalization after three years will be possible for those who have achieved outstanding performance at work or do voluntary work, speak German well, and are financially independent.
  • All children born to Foreign parents will be granted Citizenship if one of their parents has been living in Germany for more than five years


Accelerated Path to German Citizenship

Until now, the established process for foreigners legally residing and working in Germany involved making naturalization as a German citizen possible after a period of eight years. One of the proposed amendments in the draft proposal involves reducing the standard period for foreigners to qualify for naturalization from eight to five years of legal residence and work in the country. If individuals can demonstrate a significant level of integration, including advanced proficiency in the German language, they may be eligible for citizenship in just three years. It’s important to note that these modifications specifically pertain to individuals with uninterrupted residency and work rights during this timeframe and no criminal record.


Multiple nationalities to be allowed

The potential shift in Germany’s longstanding practice of primarily permitting single citizenship is generating considerable interest among many foreigners. The draft law, a focal point of which is the allowance of multiple citizenships, has garnered support, although some opposition parties express disagreement with its inclusion. Greta Agustini, an immigration specialist lawyer for Germany, views this change as a move to align Germany with other European countries like Italy, Sweden, Ireland, and France, which already permit dual citizenship with fewer bureaucratic restrictions.

However, Interior Minister Faeser highlighted the importance of allowing for dual citizenship, saying that with this change in law, people living in Germany will no longer be “forced to give up part of their identity.” To appease at least some of the opponents of the law, the wording of the draft proposal stresses that German citizenship will be lost if an individual “joins the armed forces or a comparable armed association of a foreign state or by concrete participation in combat operations of a terrorist organization abroad.”


3 Ways to Get German Citizenship

There are three common ways to apply for the German Citizenship. Let’s discuss each of them one by one below:

1) German Citizenship by Naturalization

You can become a German Citizen by Naturalization after living in Germany for five years or three years. Previously, it was eight years. This change has been made in the German New Law on Citizenship to Grant Citizenship to Foreigners in five or three years.

Naturalization is the process by which a non-citizen of a country can acquire citizenship or nationality of that country.

2) German Citizenship by Birth

You are automatically a German citizen if at least one of your parents is a German citizen.

A change has been made in German New Citizenship Law for Foreign citizens. All children born to Foreign parents will be granted Citizenship if one of their parents has been living in Germany for more than five years.

3) German Citizenship by Marriage

Foreign nationals can also obtain German citizenship by marrying a German citizen. However, they are eligible for Citizenship if they have lived in Germany for three years. And their marriage has lasted at least two years.


New Citizenship Law in Germany 2023-24
New Citizenship Law in Germany 2023-24


  1. You must have lived legally in Germany for at least three years according to the new German citizenship law 2023
  2. Clean Criminal Record.
  3. You must be able to support yourself financially
  4. You must have a sufficient command of the German language.


Frequently Asked Questions about New Citizenship Law in Germany

How can I speed up my German citizenship?

Brush up on your language skills

Is Germany good for citizenship?

A number of studies also claim that the German passport is the best in the world, based on rankings considering “travel freedom” and the ability to visit a country without needing a visa. A person with German citizenship can receive a German passport, which entitles the holder to travel without a visa to 177 countries.

Does Germany allow dual citizenship?




The German government has proposed significant changes to streamline citizenship requirements, reducing the residency period for naturalization from eight to five years. Exceptional cases demonstrating outstanding work performance, proficiency in German, financial independence, or voluntary activities may qualify for citizenship in just three years. The draft law also embraces multiple nationalities, aligning Germany with other European countries. Children born to foreign parents are now eligible for German citizenship if one parent has lived in Germany for over five years. Three main pathways to German citizenship include naturalization after five or three years, citizenship by birth if a parent is German, and citizenship by marriage with a three-year residency requirement.