I'm wondering if it is possible for me to obtain dual citizenship. I have tried reading several different articles but it is all so confusing! My grandparents on my mother's side were both born in Holland. My mother was also born in Holland on October 1, 1948. However they migrated to Australia in 1956. My grandfather was naturalized in 1963 and my mum's name is on his naturalization papers as she was with him when he obtained his naturalization. I was born in Australia in February 1990.

Please help! Thanks in advance.

  • Were you born before or after 1985? Jul 18, 2018 at 12:20
  • "I was born in 1990" - D'oh! Jul 18, 2018 at 12:26
  • Did your mother's mother naturalize in Australia in 1963 or at any other time? The current law provides that if one parent remains Dutch, so does the minor. I think that the old law was different, but before investigating too thoroughly I thought I'd ask about your maternal grandmother.
    – phoog
    Jul 19, 2018 at 17:05

1 Answer 1


According to wikipedia your mother was Dutch when you were born because she was not an adult when she became a naturalized Australian (and so, I don't believe she lost her Dutch citizen). However, according to phoog (our local Dutch nationality expert) here your mother lost her Dutch nationality when her parents naturalized, because she was included on their papers.

You were Dutch when you were born if (and pretty much only if) your mother was Dutch at the time.

Sadly, this is all irrelevant because you lose your Dutch citizenship if you live outside the Netherlands, and don't apply for a Dutch passport within 10 years of your 18th birthday. So I am afraid even if you had Dutch citizenship, you definitely lost it in February this year.

  • Good answer, but as always, it's not actually quite as simple. Unfortunately this makes it difficult to write concise answers. The 10-year rule applies to residence outside the kingdom (including its Caribbean territories) or the EU; the 10 years is restarted by residing in the kingdom or EU for a period of 1 year or longer. I'm not sure when the EU was added. The effect of shared naturalization of minors is explicit in Article 7 of the original 1892 law (vijfeeuwenmigratie.nl/foto/wet-nederlanderschap-1892), but one also needs to consider amendments between then and 1963.
    – phoog
    Jul 18, 2018 at 18:18
  • There's another exception to the 10-year rule, which is being outside the kingdom or the EU while serving (or being married to someone serving) the kingdom or an international organization in which the kingdom is a member. Also, the issue of a consular letter confirming Dutch nationality resets the 10-year period, and the law was recently amended so that the issue of a Dutch national ID card also resets it. This is obviously no help to Rachel, but oversimplifying the rules could discourage others from pursuing recognition of their nationality, possibly until after it is too late.
    – phoog
    Jul 18, 2018 at 18:20
  • Thank you Martin Bonner and phoog, you helped clear all that up but I think I might have missed out by the sounds of it!
    – Rachel
    Jul 19, 2018 at 0:44

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