I am German and living in the UK with my British husband for around 15 years now. Could he apply for a German passport without ever having lived in Germany? As a background: We are looking to move to the EU (France) but that will likely only happen after Brexit. Whilst my German passport is handy, it would be easier if he could also remain a citizen of the EU.

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    While this doesn't answer your question, you should know (as you may already) that your husband will be a beneficiary of the free movement directive even after the UK leaves the EU because of his marriage to you. After five years' residence in France, he will acquire the right of permanent residence as well as eligibility for naturalization as a French citizen. (There are some circumstances in which the residence period is shorter or even nonexistent, though they seem unlikely to apply; see service-public.fr/particuliers/vosdroits/F2213.) – phoog Apr 26 '19 at 16:01
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    In contrast to the situation in the UK, where the fee is £1,330 (roughly €1,540 today), the French naturalization fee is just €55 (roughly £47). – phoog Apr 26 '19 at 16:05
  • Yes, thanks. We were aware of that but there are a few other things where it would have been easier. - thanks for the link though, will take a look at that. – Kenska Apr 26 '19 at 16:46


There are several conditions that should be fulfilled for granting the German citizenship (§10 StAG). One of htem is that the applicant must have lived in Germany for at least eight years. And even fulfilling this condition alone would be not enough.

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    According to the BMI, spouses of German citizens are entitled to naturalization after three years of residency. (Which means your first paragraph is correct, but the details are wrong.) – Martin Bonner supports Monica Apr 26 '19 at 14:27
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    Further, there are circumstances under which it is possible to obtain German citizenship while resident abroad (search for "discretionary naturalization"), but "being married to a German" doesn't count. – Martin Bonner supports Monica Apr 26 '19 at 14:33
  • Thanks for the link - that makes it clearer. And thanks, Martin, for the clarification. – Kenska Apr 26 '19 at 16:47

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