Derivative Citizenship

In some cases, children born overseas can become U.S. citizens because their parents have citizenship. But it depends on many factors and a complex formula. The lawyers of Margaret W. Wong & Associates, LLC can help you figure out whether a child qualifies for derivative citizenship.

What Qualifies a Person for Derivative Citizenship?

Adoption by a US citizen may the best-known way to gain derivative citizenship. Our lawyers do not work in family law and do not arrange adoptions, but as immigration lawyers, we do handle derivative citizenship for adopted children.

Some foreign-born children can also gain derivative citizenship by having parents who are US citizens. Even when a foreign national is an adult, it is possible to trace his or her parents’ citizenship and become a citizen. The whole process depends on a series of complex formulas that take into account when the child was born, when the parents were naturalized, etc.

There are many circumstances that will disqualify a foreign-born person from gaining derivative citizenship. For example, if the father is a U.S. citizen, the mother is not, and the child was born out of wedlock, he or she does not qualify.

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