August 25, 2018
Much speculation can be found online as to whether or not British citizens can apply for dual citizenship in Slovenia, or if their British citizenship should be revoked in the process of applying for the Slovenian one. We made some calls to the Ministry and got it confirmed that as long as the United Kingdom allows Slovenian citizens to apply for British citizenship without revoking their original citizenship, the same is allowed for British nationals applying for Slovenian citizenship here. At the moment, we were told, the rule is still in place.
So what are the rest of the conditions that need to be met if applying for Slovenian citizenship? What follows is an overview of all possible scenarios the law predicts and all possible conditions, along with any evidence and documents you might be asked to provide when applying.
There are two ways one can apply for Slovenian citizenship: by birth and by naturalization.
Acquisition of citizenship by birth
Citizenship by birth can be acquired in three ways:
- Automatic acquisition of Slovenian citizenship if a person is born in Slovenia to at least one parent with Slovenian citizenship
- Slovenian citizenship acquisition with notification, if a child is born abroad to at least one parent with Slovenian citizenship. This is done either by notification of the child’s parents before a child comes of the age (18) or by the person themselves between the age of 18 and 36.
- Acquisition of Slovenian citizenship by adoption: same rules apply as described above
Acquisition of Slovenian citizenship by naturalisation
Slovenian citizenship is granted at the discretion of the relevant authority if an applicant meets the following conditions:
- is at least 18 years of age;
- provides a proof of remission (release) from previous citizenship or proof that they will receive it if accepted into citizenship of the Republic of Slovenia;
- has lived in Slovenia for 10 years, of which the last five years before submitting the application are uninterrupted, and has the legal status of an alien;
- has the means to provide for the material and social security of themselves and their dependants;
- has passed the Slovenian language proficiency test at the basic level;
- has not been convicted to a prison sentence longer than three months, or to a probation period of more than one year;
- has not been banned from entering the country;
- their admission to citizenship of the Republic of Slovenia does not pose a threat to the public order, security or defence of the State;
- has settled all their tax liabilities;
- has made an oath that will respect the free democratic order as established in the constitution of the Republic of Slovenia
According to the second paragraph of article 10 of the Citizenship of the Republic of Slovenia Act (ZDRS), a proof of release is not required to be submitted by citizens of the European Union where dual citizenship reciprocity exists between the two states, as noted earlier. We got confirmation from the Ministry of the Interior that such reciprocity between the Republic of Slovenia and the United Kingdom currently exists.
The conditions listed above also change for the following categories of applicants.
If an applicant is married to a Slovenian citizen for at least three years and has lived in Slovenia for at least one year prior to the application filing, then item no. 3 does not apply (ZDRS, article 12, paragraph 3).
If an applicant has revoked or has given up their Slovenian citizenship and has lived in Slovenia continuously for at least six months prior to the application submission, then conditions 1, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10 should be met (ZDRS, Article 12, paragraph 2).
If an applicant is a Slovenian expatriate or their descendant (up to the fourth degree in a direct line of kinship) and has lived in Slovenia for at least a year prior to the application, then the conditions 1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 should be met (ZDRS, Article 12, paragraph 1).
If an applicant is stateless or has a refugee status and has lived in Slovenia continuously for more than five years then conditions no. 1, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 should be met (ZDRS, Article 12, paragraphs 7 and 8).
If an applicant underwent and completed studies in Slovenia at the level of bachelor's degree or higher, has lived in Slovenia at least seven years, one year of which continuously before the application was filed, then conditions 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, and 10 should be met (ZDRS, Article 12, paragraph 9).
If an applicant has been born in Slovenia and has lived here since their birth, then conditions 6,7,8,9, and 10 should be met (ZDRS, Article 12, paragraph 5).
If an applicant is a minor, and if parents have acquired Slovenian citizenship by naturalization, their child does not acquire Slovenian citizenship automatically but only on their parents request. For further details on naturalization of minors see ZDRS, Article 14.
Citizenship is also granted to applicants who have lived in Slovenia continuously for at least a year prior to the application, if a relevant authority has recognized their acceptance into the citizenship benefits the state in the scientific, economic, cultural, national or other fields. In such cases applicants have to meet the conditions number 4, 6, 8, 9 and 10 (ZDRS, Article 13).