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Riigikogu seeks solutions to citizenship law gap

Jan 15, 2013

TALLINN - The Estonian Parliament [Riigikogu] discussed on Tuesday the proposal of the Legal Chancellor to find a solution to the situation that children of people, who received Estonian citizenship via naturalization, don’t get automatically Estonian citizenship, Public Broadcasting reports.

The topic has been discussed at the parliament's constitutional committee and received its support.

The problem is that if people who received Estonian citizenship via naturalization, don’t apply for a residence permit for their child, a situation emerges that the legal status of the child is undetermined when the child gets to be 15 years old.

Usually this happens when the parent misleadingly assumes that since they are Estonian citizen, the child is an Estonian citizen which is not the case.

The Legal Chancellor thus made a proposal that such people could get Estonian citizenship automatically. There are around 500 such children in Estonia now, but not all of them could be interested in getting Estonian citizenship.

The government has so far taken a position that if a child has de facto lived in Estonia for 8 years, then he/she can get Estonian citizenship even if the child lacks a residence permit due to parents’ mistake. So far there have been 13 such cases that have found a positive solution.

Legal Chancellor said that since he cannot make a proposal for through revision of citizenship rules, he continues making proposals case by case.

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