Citizenship in Ukraine for children and minors under 18: is there a difference?

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Today, more than 170 thousand foreigners and stateless persons have valid certificates or permanent residence permits and are registered with the Migration Service of Ukraine. These are persons who legally reside in Ukraine, i.e. they have almost all the same rights as Ukrainian citizens. Therefore, the children they gave birth to, under certain conditions have the right to Ukrainian citizenship.

In this publication our lawyers will elaborate on the peculiarities of the procedure for obtaining citizenship for children under 18 years old and after reaching the age of majority, if the basis is the birth of a child in Ukraine from foreigners.

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Grounds for citizenship for children who were born in Ukraine, but the parents or one of them is a foreigner

Let’s talk in detail about the documents that will entitle a child for citizenship of our country:

  • If the child was born in or outside of Ukraine, and the parents have no citizenship, but legally resided in Ukraine, then a residence permit must be provided. If the child was born outside of Ukraine, there is one condition - the child must not acquire the citizenship of the state where he/she was actually born.
  • If the child was born in Ukraine and the parents have foreign citizenship, or they are foreigners and stateless persons legally residing in Ukraine. Then it is necessary to have a residence permit. An important condition is that the child does not acquire the citizenship of foreign parents.
  • If the child was born in Ukraine and the parents or one of them has been granted refugee status or asylum in Ukraine. The child must not acquire citizenship at the birth of either parent. However, it will not be taken into account if the child acquired citizenship of a parent who is a refugee or has been granted asylum in Ukraine.
  • If the child at birth became a citizen of another state, the parents must submit an undertaking to terminate this citizenship or a declaration of renunciation of the child’s citizenship.

Our lawyers can help you figure things out. For example, you can file a declaration if the child’s parents:

  • are refugees or have been granted asylum in Ukraine;
  • serve or have served under contract in the Armed Forces of Ukraine;
  • received a temporary residence permit for providing assistance to the AFU;
  • citizens of a state recognized as an aggressor or occupant state, and persecuted in their country.

Please note! It is necessary to confirm the legality of residence in Ukraine of the child’s parents on the day of the child’s birth, not on the day of submission of documents.

Regardless of where the child was born, and whether he/she is a foreign citizen or not, in the case of adoption or guardianship (provided that one of the guardians or adoptive parents is a Ukrainian citizen), such a child may obtain Ukrainian citizenship. However, even if the documents for citizenship were not submitted before reaching the age of majority (18 years old), the child after reaching this age may personally apply for Ukrainian citizenship.

You may also like: Obtaining a Residence Permit in Ukraine on a Turnkey Basis

The main aspects of obtaining Ukrainian citizenship by a minor

Our company repeatedly receives requests from foreigners with children under 18 years old to acquire Ukrainian citizenship.

For example, one of the clients - a minor citizen of China, intended to go abroad for training, and with the passport of our state it is much easier to implement.

Here it is necessary to pay attention to the following points:

  • The documents for children under the age of 18 must be submitted by one of the parents. The child makes this decision independently only upon reaching the age of majority;
  • Ukrainian law does not provide for the consent of the second parent, regardless of whether he/she is a foreigner, a citizen of Ukraine or a stateless person;
  • The child’s consent is compulsory if he/she has reached the age of 14. This consent is provided by the child in person at a migration service office or at a consular office;
  • In some cases, a declaration that the child is stateless is required;
  • The obligation to renounce foreign citizenship or a declaration of renunciation of foreign citizenship shall be also submitted by parents.

Our lawyers will study your particular case and help you find the easiest and simplest solution.

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Publication date: 08/06/2022

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