There are many ways to obtain Brazilian citizenship, such as naturalization, nationality or marriage. In this article you will learn how a child can acquire Brazilian citizenship.
Different from other countries, whose nationality rules are addressed in laws and decrees, nationality in Brazil is a fundamental right which is regulated by the Federal Constitution. According to the constitutional requirements, a child can acquire Brazilian citizenship in two situations: jus soli and jus sanguinis.
Jus Soli is a latin term that means "land rights" and recognizes a citizen based on their place of birth. Every child born in Brazil will automatically have Brazilian citizenship, except children of foreign parents who are both on an official government mission from another country.
Jus Sanguinis is a latin term that means "blood rights" and recognizes a citizen according to their ancestry.
Children of Brazilian parents who were born abroad are considered Brazilian citizens by blood relationship providing the following requirements are met:
- The mother or father of the child must be Brazilian and also be on an official mission from the government, like diplomats for example
- The child of a Brazilian father or mother born abroad must register the birth at the Brazilian consulate in the country where the child lives
- Children of a Brazilian father or mother born abroad, who come to live in Brazil and opt for Brazilian nationality. But only after 18 years old.
The registration of the birth at the consulate can be done regardless of the child’s age, but will only be valid up until the age of 18. To validate it permanently, the consular birth registration must be subsequently registered with the Cartório do 1º Ofício do Registro Civil in the location where the child lives in Brazil or in the Cartório do 1º Ofício do Registro Civil of the Federal District, if the child is not living in Brazil. This registration is sufficient to ensure Brazilian citizenship of the child and is the prerequisite for obtaining other Brazilian documents. There are no restrictions on multiple nationalities and the registration is free.
A Brazilian born abroad who has more than one citizenship, can have a Brazilian passport in the same way that all other Brazilians do, but only if the child has registered the birth at the consular. A Brazilian passport will be required to enter or leave Brazil.
Brazilian citizenship does not exclude the possibility of having other nationalities. The loss of Brazilian citizenship only occurs if the individual requests it or by a court ruling due to an activity harmful to the country.
The acquisition of citizenship for adopted foreign children depends on what legislation is established in the host country. Therefore, the current or change of citizenship of the adopted child is an effect that depends on the law of each country.
The Brazilian Constitution does not grant citizenship by Jus Sanguinis to an adopted child that was born outside of Brazil but was adopted by a Brazilian. In this case it is necessary to request citizenship via the naturalization process.