Dual citizenship means that you are a citizen of more than one country. For instance you may have two citizenships, one through your mother and one through your father.
1. Dual citizenship in case a foreign national citizen wishes to become Norwegian
If you wish to become a Norwegian citizen it is required as a principal rule that you renounce any other citizenship. In certain cases there are exemptions from this requirement, and double citizenship is allowed:
- The legislation in the applicant’s former home country does not permit citizens to be released from their citizenship, or such release is deemed to be practically impossible.
- The authorities in the former home country have rejected an application for release.
- For reasons for personal safety, the applicant should not be required to contact the authorities of his or her former home country in order to apply for release.
- More than one year has elapsed since Norwegian citizenship was granted or since the applicant reached the age at which it is possible to obtain release pursuant to the legislation of the former home country but the granting of release has not been documented, and the home country has provided no information as regards expected processing time. If it is known that the applicant’s former home country does not reply to applications for release from nationality, an exemption may be granted from the requirement regarding release in connection with the granting of Norwegian citizenship.
- The authorities in the applicant’s former home country set unreasonably burdensome conditions for release. Whether the fee charged for release is unreasonably burdensome shall be assessed on the basis of ordinary income. If the fee exceeds four per cent of the applicant’s income, the release fee is deemed to be unreasonably burdensome. The same applies if the applicant is responsible for the care of children under 18 years of age, and the release fee, including any release fee for children, exceeds two per cent of the applicant’s income. However, a release fee of up to and including NOK 2,500 is not deemed to be unreasonably burdensome. In the case of orphans, any release fee is deemed to be unreasonably burdensome.
Where a child becomes a Norwegian citizen upon notification renouncement of citizenship is not required. see "Who can become a Norwegian citizen by notification?"
1.1 What happens to my old citizenship when I become Norwegian?
Although Norwegian law is based on the principle that dual citizenship is not acceptable, Norwegian authorities cannot answer for what legislation in your home country says about citizenship.
Frequently asked questions:
- Do I automatically forfeit my original citizenship when I become Norwegian?
- Can I keep my original citizenship after having been granted Norwegian citizenship?
- Can I renounce my original citizenship?
Such questions must be addressed to the relevant authorities in your home country, or the country’s embassy or High Commissioner in Norway or abroad. Several countries have also made information about citizenship available on the Internet.
2. Dual citizenship in case a Norwegian acquires another citizenship
A Norwegian citizen who has been granted citizenship in another country after he/she has applied for it, has given notification to be a citizen of another country or has explicitly agreed to be a citizen of another country automatically forfeits his/her Norwegian citizenship. This also applies in the case where a child becomes a citizen of another country as a result of the parents'/guardians' application, notification or agreement. See "Loss of Norwegian citizenship by new citizenship"
Where a Norwegian citizen acquires another citizenship by other reasons the Norwegian citizenship is not lost. In other words double citizenship is allowed.
3. Where dual citizenship is allowed
In other respects than in the abovementioned No 1 and No 2 dual citizenship is allowed.
4. What does it entail to have dual citizenship?
With dual citizenship, you have rights and obligations to two different states. If you renounce your previous citizenship, you will only have rights and obligations to Norway.
4.1 Some rights in connection with dual citizenship
- You are entitled to have two passports. Norwegian permits will not, however, be stamped in your foreign passport since you are also a Norwegian citizen.
- You are entitled to diplomatic protection and consular assistance from the authorities of both countries.
- You will be regarded as a full Norwegian citizen on a par with other Norwegian citizens.
Please note that it may be difficult for Norwegian authorities to give you diplomatic protection if you are staying in the other country of which you are also a citizen.
4.2 Obliged military service (compulsory enlistment)
As Norwegian you are obliged to perform your military service in Norway. However, this does not apply in case there is an agreement between Norway and the other country deciding that you shall fulfil your military obligations in that country.
According to the law in most European countries and the USA persons possessing dual citizenship shall perform military service in the country in which they are habitually resident.