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Citizenship of Lithuania

Created: 2015.01.26 / Updated: 2015.06.09 09:24

General provisions

Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania – person‘s continuous, legal relation to the Republic of Lithuania based on mutual rights and responsibilities.

Principle of citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania:

  • Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania is grounded in the continuity of the Republic of Lithuania and its citizenship.
  • Every Lithuanian has the right to the citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania, which is implemented in accordance with procedure set by the Law on Citizenship.
  • Citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania is equal regardless of the grounds for granting it.
  • Citizen of the Republic of Lithuania cannot simultaneously hold citizenship of another state, except for cases foreseen in the Law on Citizenship.
  • Citizen of the Republic of Lithuania residing in another state does not lose citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania.
  • Citizen of the Republic of Lithuania who enters into marriage with a citizen of another state, after its dissolution, also, when citizenship of his/her spouse changes, does not lose the citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania.
  • Citizen of the Republic of Lithuania has the right to renounce the citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania, with the exception of cases set in the Law on Citizenship. 
  • Citizen of the Republic of Lithuania cannot be stripped of his/her citizenship. A person can lose citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania only on the grounds and in accordance with the procedure set in the Law on Citizenship.
  • Citizenship of a child who acquired citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania through a birth does not change when citizenship of his parents or one of his parents changes.

Legal status of citizens of the Republic of Lithuania:

  • Citizens of the Republic of Lithuania have all the rights, freedoms and obligations that are defined the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, laws and other legal acts, also, international treaties of the Republic of Lithuania.
  • Citizen of the Republic of Lithuania must observe the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, laws and other legal acts, also international treaties of the Republic of Lithuania, perform obligations set in them, guard interests of the Republic of Lithuania, help to strengthen its power and authority, remain loyal to it.
  • Lithuanian state protects and serves as a guardian of its citizens beyond the territory of the Republic of Lithuania.
  • Citizen of the Republic of Lithuania cannot be expelled from the territory of the Republic of Lithuania.
  • Citizen of the Republic of Lithuania cannot be extradited to another state, except for the cases foreseen in international treaties of the Republic of Lithuania.

When citizen of the Republic of Lithuania can simultaneously hold membership of another state

Citizen of the Republic of Lithuania can simultaneously hold citizenship of another state if he falls at least under one of the these conditions:

  • (S)he obtained citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania and citizenship of another state through birth and is younger than 21 years old;
  • Is a person exiled from occupied Republic of Lithuania prior to March 11, 1990 who acquired citizenship of another state;
    • A person exiled from occupied Republic of Lithuania prior to March 11, 1990 – person who held citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania prior to June 15, 1940 or his/her descendant, who were forcefully removed from Lithuania by institutions or court decisions of occupational regimes due to resistance to occupational regimes, on the grounds of political, social, or descent motives;
  • Is a person who retreated from Lithuania prior to March 11, 1990 and acquired citizenship of another state;
    • A person who retreated from Lithuania prior to March 11, 1990 – person who held citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania prior to June 15, 1940 or his/her descendant, who retreated from territory of contemporary Lithuania to reside permanently in another state prior to March 11, 1990, provided that on March 11, 1990 their place of permanent residency was not in Lithuania;
  • Is a descendant of a person indicated in a paragraph 2 or 3;
    • Descendant of citizen of the Republic of Lithuania – child, grandchild, grand grandchild of a person holding the citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania prior to June 15, 1940;
  • Upon entering into marriage with a citizen of another state automatically (ipso facto) acquired citizenship of that state;
  • Is a person who is below 21 years old, if (s)he has been adopted by citizen(s) of the Republic of Lithuania before turning 18 years old, and due to this fact acquired the citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania in accordance with Article 17 (1) of the Law on Citizenship;
  • Is a person who is below 21 years old, if (s)he – as a citizen of the Republic of Lithuania – has been adopted before turning 18 years old by citizen(s) of another state and due to this fact acquired citizenship of another state;
  • Acquired citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania by way of exception, while holding the citizenship of another state;
  • Acquired citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania while holding the status of refugee in the Republic of Lithuania;
  • Status of citizen of the Republic of Lithuania who simultaneously holds citizenship of another state;
  • Citizen of the Republic of Lithuania, who simultaneously holds citizenship of another state, is considered by the Lithuanian state to be solely the citizen of the Republic of Lithuania. Holding citizenship of another state does not exempt a person from citizen‘s duties set in the Constitution of the Republic of Lithuania, laws and other legal acts.

Submission of applications to grant citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania

Issues related to citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania are only considered on the basis of written applications of persons. Applications to grant citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania on behalf of children under 18 years old and incapacitated persons shall be submitted by their representatives.

Persons residing in the Republic of Lithuania shall submit applications to grant citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania through a Territorial Police Office in person‘s place of residence within the Republic of Lithuania.

Persons residing abroad shall submit the applications through diplomatic missions or consular posts of the Republic of Lithuania or through the Migration Department under the Ministry of the Interior of the Republic of Lithuania (Vilnius, L. Sapiegos str. 1).

Persons‘ repeated applications to grant citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania shall  be accepted not earlier than one year after refusal to grant the earlier request, except for cases when application is submitted on other ground for acquiring citizenship of the Republic of Lithuania set in the Law on Citizenship or new documents confirming validity of the earlier request are submitted.

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