Dual citizenship

I picked up my EU passport via a Polish dual citizenship yesterday. Even though myphotowas not super I am happy. I had citizenship just did not meet the passport.  I am also a US citizen.  Many people ask me about the question of dual citizenship.

Dual citizenship

Rules of Dual citizenship

The rules of dual citizenship are quite easy to understand. Most countries neither deny or recognizes dual citizenship.  However, if you are a dual citizen you must enter the country with the country’s passport you own.  Therefore, as an American I must enter the US on my USA passport and the EU on my EU passport.  Why?  Because, the passport you enter determines the rules you will follow.

US dual citizenship holders must enter on their US passport to the USA

If I enter the USA on my Polish passport, which I am not allowed to do anyway, I would be a Polish citizen in the USA. I must enter on my US passport and I am subject to the laws of the USA and can not go crying to Poland if I get in trouble.  Is this clear? You use your both your passports and must enter on the right passport, that is where you are a citizen.

Dual citizenship and taxes

What about taxes?  Very easy and clear,  as a USA dual citizen I am responsible for US taxes forever, not matter where I live or if I am a dual citizen.

The US government does not care. Yes this is true.  Just because you have dual nationality the US tax office does not care.  If you make 1 dollar in Siberia this must be reported along with all your bank accounts.  I report to the US government and Polish government  my pittance of teaching earrings I make in Poland teaching English. I must report all investments and bank accounts. However, most countries have treaties.  The US will allow about a 90k exclusion on foreign income earned.

Which is a lot of money at least for me, so most people reading this do not have to worry.  However, income in my US bank accounts I must pay interest on regardless as it is domestic income and the same rule applies for Polish income I have to report it to the Polish government. You should combine your world wide income and report it. You can not and should not hide anything.

Benefits of dual citizenship

Above  is the worst part of being a dual citizen and most do not have to worry about it. Besides feeling like Jason Bourne or an International man of mystery, the best part is I get to live anywhere in Europe or American without a second thought about visas. I also get to work basically anywhere I want, the USA or in the EU as I am a “dual citizen”.   This makes life very easy for me and my family.  Further my family is a dual citizen so if I have children they can study in the EU or the USA and work anywhere.  It makes life very interesting.

How to get a dual citizenship

Most people looking for dual citizenship are American looking to connect with their roots.  The EU goes by blood or birthright jus sanguinis.  This is in contrast to the US which goes by jus soli or by place of birth.

If you parents are citizens then you will be.  It does not matter where you are born.  However, if you are born in the EU it does not mean you will get citizenship.

Grandchildren get special treatment, but citizenship is not confirmed rather it is obtained through nationalization in most countries.  So if your grandparents came from Poland for example, you can apply for naturalization but usually can not automatically get confirmed.  I do not want to go into the law as it is very complex. However you ca ask question and maybe I might know. A lawyer can help but they are pricey.  The law is the law, if you know it and apply you can get it.  I do not think there are any loopholes.

I had a lawyer and I knew more than he did about the law.  Really, I did it my way and got two citizenships.

The best place to check the law is at the consulate of your country you want to apply for double citizenship for.  You need to apply.

How to obtain a dual citizenship

What do you need for dual citizenship?

  • All documents translated by an official translator in the official language of the country.
  • Birth certificates, marriage certificates, no exceptions.
  • Official statement from your country that you are free from obligations of money or law.  That is you are good standing.
  • Visa for the current country.
  • CV and other qualitative statements proving you will be a positive good citizen. Sometimes there is a language requirement. It does not hurt to learn the language to some level.
  • Police checks
  • Judge and court approval
  • Application for citizenship.

This is similar in all countries.

Time for dual citizenship

Count on about ten years.  Forget some express marriage stunt.  Live in the country and work and apply and maybe you will get it.

UK dual citizen

My brother after 20 years of living in the UK got his citizenship. Perhaps he could have got it sooner but I guess he did not apply.  But he worked under a work visa then green-card.

What about citizenship through marriage?  That can be another post as it is a different type of citizenship application process.

Other citizenship considerations

Some exceptions to dual citizenship are countries like Ukraine.  They do not allow dual citizenship but you know, what they do not know will not hurt them some people say. But I would double check this before I took a chance.

For immigration or visa or citizenship you will need a police check

I think countries like Italy,the Netherlands and Ireland have and perhaps the easiest dual citizenship laws. Immigration laws and nationality are always sensitive issues as the whole world wants to live in Europe and America.  Maybe not the whole world but a lot of it wants to get a work visa.

If you are looking to get entrance to the US or EU for work from a Middle Eastern or African or Asian country I think you have a harder time now than say an American.  Even though the law is the law, the EU has been flooded with Eu applicants and false marriages from the third world so the police and government does double checks on many people aspiring for EU citizenship.

My dual citizenship quest for jus sanguinis

I first came to Poland in 1999 and in 2009 I obtained my dual citizenship.  I had Polish family, and in theory was a dual citizen, just not confirmed on paper. Then I got married lived here for many years to and EU citizen, I am still married and will be forever.  I applied and waited and worked legally and did positive things for Poland. I also learned the language . But still look how long it took.  So if you think you can just waltz into the EU with a marriage, think again.  I knew a guy it took 19 years before he was citizen.  Things have changed.  I guess because I was an American and my family came to the USA with Polish passports it was easier, well over ten years latter.

But if you are looking for a wife for citizenship it is not legal and I would think again.  Marriage is sacred.  God sees all.  You might rationalize it that you are doing it for work or money, but you can rationalize any crime like this.  Marriage is sacred and forever.

If anyone has questions or comments about dual citizenship please let me know. However, please writing in full sentences without chat style, that is use proper punctuation and spelling.

EU dual citizenship is worth it

I think the benefits far outweigh the trouble so if you are patient and honest why not apply for dual citizenship.

Author: Mark Biernat

I live in with family between two worlds, US and Europe where I create tools for language learning. If you found my site you probability share my passion to be a life long learner. Please explore my site and comment.

94 thoughts on “Dual citizenship”

  1. Hello!
    I’m from Ukraine. I was born in the USSR on the territory of Russia. Currently I’m studying in Poland.
    I would like to obtain Polish citizenship, but to hold the Ukrainian either. Is it possible to get Russian passport by the right of birth and apply with it for Polish citizenship? What is chance to be unweiled by Ukrainian officers? Maybe you know some other ways?
    Thanks in advance!

    1. I think you should focus on Polish citizenship as it is EU citizenship. It is a very good citizenship.
      To achieve this is you have to concentrate on your grandfather and find out exactly all the information you can about him.
      I am Ukrainian and Polish but got Ukrainian citizenship because my grandmother had a Polish citizenship.

      It is in the Polish constitution that if you can prove you have Polish blood you can get a green card for Poland, which can lead to citizenship.

      You have to go to the Uząd like I did and go to the office or foreigners. It is where you got your visa. Ask them for an application for a karta pobytu based on your grandfather. Explain to them that you had a Polish grandfather. Start the application process.

      1. I’m an Albanian national and I’m married since 2009 with my Polish wife, from what I read in a while I might be able to get Polish citizenship.
        The point is that I don’t know if to take it because: 1-Long procedures ( from what I read/hear around), 2-Dual citizenship for non EU citizens ( European geographically :D), do you have any idea how it works for citizens of European countries which are not part of European Union?
        Another thing is that I’m about to buy some land and start building a home but as I read here somewhere I can’t do that if I’m not polish citizen ( but my wife is so I guess I can write everything on her name).
        Can you also tell me how long it would last the procedure for me? And your opinion if I have to take the Polish citizenship or not, I mean if you were in my shoes what would you do?

        I hope I’ll get an answer. Thank you very much in advance.

        1. If you have lived in Poland for three years it will not take long at all. I would just get it. It is an EU passport and will open up opportunities for you all over Europe and the world. Now Albania is a great country, but the passport is less universal. I personally am a US citizen and I got Polish citizenship also and I am very happy about that.

  2. I find it rather odd that you talk about “EU citizenship” as if that was what you actually obtained. You are a Polish citizen with an additional “EU citizenship” rights.
    If Poland left the EU/got kicked out you would have no right to live in any other European country.
    If Greece was kicked out because of their problems, Greeks could have to apply for visas and work permits like non-Europeans.
    The EU is not the federal government of Europe, that might change over time, but for now it doesn’t even cover all of Europe.

    Oh, and plenty of European countries don’t allow dual citizenship. Children also have to make choices about their citizenship before [usually] they turn 25. YMMV.

    1. Wrong. First the EU is not breaking up. The EU is here to stay. I know there is hysteria, but the USA and the EU are not falling apart because what the news stays. Everything now is crisis mentality.
      Second, my child does not have to choose between her US and EU citizenship. It is not the law. At least where I am from.
      Third, the EU is an economic Union, and interrelated but not interdependent on the right to live in various countries.

  3. I have a question. I came to Poland in Feb. 2009, and instead of applying for a Polish Passport or Visa, I simply travel out every 90 days to UK or Ireland for my stamp, and then I return. My mother was born in Poland and holds a U.S. and Polish passport. My grandfather, strictly Polish. My grandmother emmigrated to the U.S. (chicago) and then came back to Poland for the rest of her life. So i have a lot of U.S/Polish blood mixed here. Will this make it any easier for me to get citizenship here? Because of my long-standing roots. Also, great grandmother and grandfather were strictly Polish citizens. Lastly, will something like unpaid parking tickets in the U.S lead to me not getting citizenship here? I left the U.S rather abrubtly because my mother has health issues and those were things I could not concentrate on. Any help would be appreciated.

    1. Yes get a Polish citizenship or at least a green card as you have right to do. If you are of Polish blood you can get a greencard visa. Leaving the EU will not always work as in theory you can not be in the EU for more than 6 month out of the year even if you reset it every three months, and Ireland is EU so I do not know if you are legal at all now. If your mother is Polish just get a citizenship. You actually just need to be confirmed citizen rather than apply for it. I live in Poland and a dual citizen and it really is good. I can live in the US or Europe without a thought.

    2. If your mother and grand father are Polish citizens then you are a Polish Citizin and were one since your birth, you just need to get confirmed, if you have your mothers passport it should be very easy to do, you wont need no background checks etc, because you’re not becoming naturalized, you’re a citizin just getting it confirmed

  4. Hi. My son was born on 4/24/2010. I was born in the US and my husband was born in the UK. My husband currently is a legal resident of the US. How would I go about to get my son dual citizenship for UK?

    1. Congratulations on your son being born. It is easy to start the process you need to go to the British Embassy and meet the forms or download it from their website.

  5. I have a friend from the US wanting to study over here in the UK. Both her parents are Polish and she’s going to get her Polish citizenship confirmed soon so she can obtain a Polish passport. The UK study system is very strict with non-EU students meaning if she’s classed as a US student it’ll be next to impossible for her to come over here. Do you think we have much of an argument that she’s a EU member? Her parents were both born in Poland but moved to Chicago shortly before she was born. She has never lived in Poland personally.

    1. She is Polish and an EU citizen. Europe does not care where you are born as much as where you came from originally in terms of citizenship. I think she should apply as an EU citizen, which she is.

    2. According to EU law, the person needs to live for 3 years in her EU country before she/he can apply for EU student fee. Otherwise, she/he will be treated as international student.

      Fee status is determined by settled status (i.e. indefinite leave to remain), residency and purpose of residency (i.e. ordinary residence). Applicants must have both settled status AND residency to meet the necessary criteria on the relevant date (1 August in the academic year of entry). Therefore as well as settled status i.e. an EU passport, she/he would need to live in the European Economic Area (EEA), Switzerland and/or the EU overseas territories, for purposes other than education, for three years prior to the start of her course in order to be assessed as Home/EU for tuition fees.

  6. Great site,

    So how much money one needs to open a Consulting Engineering business in Poland?
    What is the tax rate?

    1. If you are a one man shop, nothing really, you can pay a 19% flat tax. However, if you are employing say ten people you will have to pay Zus or half their pension and medical. We actually have a similar system in the USA, called ‘self employment tax’ which is 16% in addition to the income tax. However, when you work as an employee basically your employer pays half.
      There is no state taxes in Poland of course.
      If you are a new company you pay a lower Zus for the first few years. It would be like 100 dollars a month if you are self-employed. In my opinion 19% is not that bad and there are a lot of highly skilled people here.
      You can expense everything from cars to offices to equipment to utilities if it can be argued that is it connected to your business. Just get a Polish accounting firm to help, I can recommend on. Of course, so you will live the entrepreneurial lifestyle.

  7. I have a question,Im married to an US citizen who is currentlty station in
    Honduras.Im in germany right now visiting my parents,Im german citizen,but my
    home/house is in NJ,thats where I live.
    I had our baby here germany and I have to get back to the states as soon as
    Heres my question
    Can I enter the US with the babys german passport and do the paperwork for his
    US passport from over there?
    The thing is I cant under no circumstances stay any longer in Germany..
    Thank you in advance

    1. I think you can enter the USA on normal German passports, but only for 3 months. You can start the paperwork for a visa anywhere I think. The best is to talk to the US embassy and start before. But do not count on anything, if they find something they do not like it could delay the visa process. I guess you are a German girl married to an American serviceman. I think if this is the case it should be pretty easy with the paperwork.

  8. I’ve got a question too. I have 2 sons born by my Polish partner so my boys have Polish passports, & also i have very recently registered them as British citizens as well. Is it wise to give up their Polish citizenship (if i can) just for the British citizenship alone, bearing in mind that British or Polish, they;re all EU nationals?

    Otherwise do u think i shd let them remain/keep both? And what could be the difference if any?

    I really need an urgent answer please so i decide asap please.

    1. In the Eu it does not matter today. As a British citizen or a Polish citizen, you can live and work in Europe. I have no idea why you would want to give up one citizenship. I have dual citizenship, I think it is a plus.

  9. And Yes, they were both born here in the United Kingdom.

  10. Why can the rest of EU countries can go to USA without visa except Poland and Romania and Bulgaria and if this true union why they don’t respect all member in the same way.

    1. You know it is unfair, they say they have a certain limit for the number of not legal immigrants but at this point since Poland is in the EU it is silly.

  11. Hi, my question isn’t about Poland but is about becoming dual citizen of an EU country. I am a US citizen (born in Hawaii), both my parents were born in the US as well but I know my great grand parents came from Europe- Denmark on my dads side and Sweden on my moms side (my grandmother was born there, but moved when she was young and married in the US to a US citizen). I am trying to live and work (as an au pair) in Europe and it would be a lot easier I found out since I am 25 and most countries have an age limit. Do you have any suggestions? Please help, I would really appreciate it!

    1. Wow you want to go from one paradise to another, HI to Europe. Look, do not worry about age limits and things with dual citizenships. Why? You might no be able to get confirmed a citizen as your roots are too far back and your age is 25, however, that does not mean you can not apply for a visa based on your roots. This is what I did. You have to build a case. You have to document very well all your connections to the country you are applying for, including you learning the language and history etc. You have to make a legal case why they would consider you. Research the law in the country and even if you do not find a reason based on Jus sanguinis make a why you could be an exception. Once you have a visa, live and work legally and in a good way and in a few years you can apply for citizenship. So my advice is do not go directly for citizen, but start with a visa based on a case you prepare and put together. It might take years, but so what.

  12. Hey Mark, thanks for the great thread. I am currently a Canadian Citizen looking to get duel citizenship in Poland. I have spent some time looking into the process of applying for a Polish citizenship. I was wondering primary about the negatives of having a polish Citizenship and what restrictions if any it would have on me. Some questions i had were:
    1- Would I be faced with double taxation on my personal income?
    2- If I got my polish citizenship and then applied for the “EU citizenship” as mentioned in the other posts. Would I had the right to live and work in all the other member countries in the EU? For example I read on another blog that Polish citizens with EU citizen rights are not given the rights to live and work in Germany without first expressly applying to Germany for a work visa. I was just wondering if similar restrictions to this one were true for other countries.
    3-If I became a polish citizen does it limit me from becoming a citizen of another country in the EU at a later date. Example. If I were to marry someone from France could I hold both a French/Canadian and Polish Citizenship all at once or would I be forced to renounce one… or will getting one the polish citizenship prevent me from becoming a citizen of another EU country at a future time.
    4- Lastly, I read before that mandatory military service is was required up until about 2009. I believe that this is no longer the case. Please correct me on this point if I am wrong. However I was just wondering if there are any other substantial commitments that Poland requires from there citizens that I should be aware of.
    Thanks for the time and effort you have put into the blog. I look forward to hearing your response.

    1. There are not negatives of Polish citizenship. Polish citizenship is EU citizenship. You will have the right to work and live in any country. You do not need another citizenship if you have this one.
      Military service is out. They will not care about a foreign national who holds a Polish citizenship, many of my friends do and never had to serve, besides that law has changed I think.
      Do not worry about double taxation. Only the USA does that and that is above the 90,000 dollar a year threshold, otherwise you can exclude income because of tax treaties.
      There is no reason not to apply for repatrization in Poland. It will change your life.

  13. Hello again, my question refers to the “personal questionnaire” that is supposed to be submitted with your application. On the website they do not elaborate on what this is. Clarification would be much appreciated. Thanks.

    1. The general idea here is to give them as much paper as they can handle. More paper is better. If that is an outline of your life, give them something like a CV or Resume. Build a family tree in a spreadsheet and fill it in with details. I do not remember that exact phrase, but build a case. Nothing is clear, but rather, how much paper you pile on them. I highly recommend you build a case with a family tree and your life qualifications to support yourself etc.

  14. Hello again Mark and thanks for your diligence in answering my questions. I have a concern that arrose when I started looking into the history of my grandfather.
    During world war two my grandfather was forced to leave poland becuase he fled from German occupation. During the next year or so he went to England where he served in there military as a fighter pilot. He flew planes for a short period say a year or so and then the war ended. He then came to Canada where he lived, met and married my grandmother. They lived together and had 2 kids my father and his brother. They then divorced after a marrage of about 6 years and he returned back to Poland and became a Polish citizen. I have a concern as mentioned on the Polish website because it states that if you were in the military of a foreign country that you forefit your polish citizenship. That would mean that at the time of my fathers birth my grandfather was not a Polish citizen and therefore my father would have no claim to become a Polish citizen. I talked with someone at the Polish consulate and they said that because the period of time in which my grandfather served in the army was short ( 9 months i believe) as well as the fact that he did not choose another countries military over the polish miltary. ie he could not take part in the polish military because it was under German occoupation that in fact it would not affect my fathers claim to become a polish citizen. From your past responses I can tell that you have a strong understanding of Polish citizen process and was wondering what yuor opinion on the situation was. Furthermore in the case that the military service does affect the citizenship status what alternatives if any do I have? Thanks so much again and sorry for the long winded post.

    1. Polish law makes allowances for its history. Since there was really no Poland historically for many years in history, Polish lawmakers had to take this into account. Therefore the consulate is right. That should not affect in any way your claim to Polish citizenship.
      However, in the odd chance it does you would just get a Polish greencard as you have Polish blood. This would lead to citizenship a few years latter. A Polish greencard is easy to get if you have Polish roots it is in the constitution.
      But again, each citizenship case is treated on a case to case basis and they would have a hard time rejecting you ased on the fact your grandfather was a freedom fighter against a common enemy.

  15. Hi Mark,

    I am an Italian citizen living in Ukraine with a Ukrainian domestic partner (we are not married yet). Since we are having a child very soon, we would like to understand which nationality our child will have in the two cases of having him/her born in Italy or Ukraine and whether there is a possible best case scenario in which he/she can legally hold the dual citizenship.

    It looks like a complex situation because the legislation of the two Countries are completely different.

    Thank you very much in advance for your time and your advice.


    1. Ukraine does not have a dual citizenship so you need to go only for the Italian citizenship. It is the most important as it is EU. Maybe your child can have a dual citizen at first but needs to choose. But since Ukrainian does not allow dual citizen I think Italian citizenship is the choice as it is a full EU citizenship.

      1. Hi Mark,

        I really appreciate all your helpful comments on this site. My question is as follows: I want to obtain Polish citizenship based on the fact that my maternal grandparents were Polish citizens, and my mother is a naturalized American citizen with a previous citizenship from Poland.

        My mother never renounced her Polish citizenship but came to the US as a teenager and no longer has a Polish passport so she is in the process of regaining her Polish citizenship.

        I have served in the US military and want to obtain Polish citizenship (dual as I’m keeping my US citizenship) and want to know if this military service is an issue. I served for 7 years as a JAG officer/lawyer and am no longer part of the US military. In fact, I resigned my commission. So, does this affect my application for Polish citizenship?

        I would be most grateful for your advice. Thank you.

  16. I currently hold US and Greek citizenship. If Greece were to leave the EU, what options would I have to retain my right to work in the EU? Is there a general EU passport/citizenship I could apply for?

    Thank you!

    1. Greece might leave the Euro zone but not the EU. And even if it left the EU it would not end your right as a Greek Citizen as there is another treaty called the Schengen Agreement. The EU, the Euro and the Schengen Agreement are connected but three different ideas. Greece would basically have to pull out of all three before you were limited in your travel and life. I do not see that happening.
      Look Norway is not an EU member, but Norwegian citizens share the right to live and travel and work in Europe.

  17. Hi Mark,

    My wife has Portuguese and Brazilian passport, we currently live in the U.A.E and her residence visa is in the Brazilian passport, as a Portuguese citizenship, she doesn’t need visa to go to U.S.A.

    Since I’m crew, I’ll request her ticket and the details will be taken from the Brazilian passport, so I believe that she needs to show the Brazilian passport upon check-in and immigration in the U.A.E and when arriving in the U.S.A, she will show the Portuguese passport.

    Do you know if is this the right way? I already call the American embassy, but I think the guy didn’t understand my question, he told me she will have to show the passport which has the U.A.E residence visa (Brazilian) and if she doesn’t have the American visa on the Brazilian passport, her boarding will be denied, which it doesn’t make sense, you can be a Portuguese tourist coming to the UAE (you get a visa on arrival) and afterwards go to USA without any problem using the visa waiver process.

    If you can help me, I kindly appreciate.


    1. Although, well-intentioned, you are right the people at the US embassy do not always understand the questions. This has been my experience.
      However, that being said, I highly recommend to ask again, as and call and write several people to get a clear answer. I do not assume anything with the US embassy and the department of homeland security. Their default reaction is ‘no’. That means the burden of proof is on your to legally get into the country.
      Even me, I am an American and Polish citizen. Our daughter is also. My wife who I have been married to several years wants to come to the USA with us to live. I have income. But it does not matter, the US embassy will make sure everything is in order and there is no messing around. I have seen them deny Americans with foreign spouses without a second thought, because something was not in order.
      I know this sounds unfair but they are really legalistic for security reasons.
      Therefore, I would revisit the question until you get the exact steps needed to get your wife in the country legally. Technically if she is a Portuguese citizen she does not need a visa. You are correct. But I would not assume anything with the department of homeland security as they are very strict.
      So get more information or you could get denied.

  18. Hi Mark,

    So I have a few issues:

    1) I am going to be attending a masters program in Poland this September and I have just obtained my Polish citizenship in February. However I am still waiting to hear back from the consulate with my PESEL number. Without it, I am not able to apply for a passport.
    2) My issue is whether or not I should enter Poland on my US passport and leave every 3 months to reset it (I am not sure whether or not I can even do this) and keep doing that until my Polish passport comes through.
    3) I cannot apply for a visa seeing that I am a citizen but I do not want to loose out on this opportunity to study abroad.
    Do you have any advice in regards to the resetting of the passport and or another route on staying in Poland longer than the 3 months legally?

    Thank you for your time,


    1. I am very happy to hear you have Polish citizenship. Poland is a great country.

      OK, you are a Polish citizen. That is all you have to know. What is there is some homeless guy who has no Dowód Osobisty in Poland? Or an American that has nosocial security number or Passport in the USA? Does that mean you are not a citizen and can not stay in the country? Of course not. You are a citizen of the country. You do not need a PESEL or Passport to stay in the country you are a citizen of.

      A PESEL is like a social security number. Many American do not have one for one reason or another. Amish people might not ever have a US passport but are they not Americans?

      These things just make it useful for the modern system of records but has nothing to do if you as a citizen have the constitutional right to be in the country you are a memeber of.

      Therefore, I would keep up the pressure on the urząd to get this PESEL. Once you have it all other doors are open to you. But you are a citizen and can live in Poland without a visa.

      If you do not have it I personally would just enter on my US passport and once in Poland get your PESEL in person, if you do not already have it. It should only take like a month. Even if it takes 5 months I would not worry about getting stamps on my US passport as you are a citizen of that country. I am not a legal advisor of course but this is what I would do.

  19. My 4 yrs boyfriend and me are planning to married. He is from Denmark and I am american, we know how difficult is to married in Dk . So after some considerations he is planning to come to the united states works here and then get married. If we do that, he will lose his EU citizenship? He don’t like the idea, he prefer me to get dual citizenship that will be possible after we married.

    1. EU countries and USA do not care too much about dual citizenships. I am a dual US EU citizen, it is not a problem. However, for you to get Danish citizenship you need to live and work in Denmark for nine years, or as little as six if you have been married for three years or more.

      I personally would not worry about citizenship. I would live and work and be married where you want to live for your lifestyle. You can get a marriage visa of some kind after they review your finances in the USA (1.5 times the poverty rate with a US based job or lets say 25k a year income on last years 1040 tax return) etc. Then live in the USA. Or you can love in the EU after you get a visa. Citizenship is a secondary consideration and more a formality I mean as long as you are married what does it get you over a greencard except the right to vote?

  20. I recently got my Polish passport, however I gave the official my only copy of the document with my PESEL number. How do I get the number again?

    1. Not a problem, you are in the system, they should have it in the computer at the office they issues it at. It should be on your Polish ID or at at the Passport office. Everyone has it in the computer believe me, if not, I can give you the exact office you got it depending on your city.

    1. Yes that too your right, and if you look it contains your birth date as part of the Pesel so it is easy to remember.

  21. Hi Mark, I’m not sure if this forum is still active as there are no dates, but I hope someone gets back to me.

    I’m a Ghanian living in Poland with my Polish wife.
    We’ve been married for 4 yrs, we got married outside Poland but have been living in Poland for the past two years.
    I currently have a 2 yrs resident permit (second issue) which expires in June next year.
    Already, I applied for a permanent residency and it went ok. I now have the decision, looking forward to collect my ID Card in few weeks.

    My question is, what do I need to do to get a Polish passport.

    1. It is a very easy think to get, however, you need to be a Polish citizen, not a visa holder. If you have been living in Poland with a permanent resident card, after three years you can apply, it might take a little longer to get it because of the bureaucracy , but once you get your Polish green card I would say five years later you can get a Polish citizenship generally, after that you just go to the passport office and it will take a couple of months.

  22. I have a Ukrainian fiance (I’m from the UK), we’ve been together for 6 yrs, and we just found out she is now pregnant with our 1st child.

    If we elect to have the baby born in the Ukraine, what will the citizenship of the child be? dual? UK? Ukraine?.

    Also what are the options available for us to elect to have the baby born in the UK? Can my fiance come and reside here with me, with a look to marry in the UK? or would not be better to marry (in the Ukraine) before she came to the UK? or can she simple come here to have our child, and then process the necessary to remain here in the UK.

    I ask for the most apt way forward, a speedy process, as our child is due in May ’11, and given it will be Christmas soon, any delays during the festive season will impact on document delivery and process.

    Any and all advice will be appreciated.


    1. Great news on the baby, being a parent is easier than people tell you, you will see. And marriage is great. I am not joking. I would 100 time rather be married than single or have a girlfriend. There is no comparison.
      OK Ukraine does not allow dual citizenship and Europe bases citizenship based on blood not place of birth so it does not matter where the baby is born. My daughter was born in Poland and the medical care is fine. Ukraine or UK it is your wife’s choice, she might have more help from her family the first few weeks there but the UK is very nice. You can double check with the UK embassy but the child will be a UK citizen at birth because you are a UK citizen. You will have to file an report of a child born abroad, then the child will get it by descent. The UK is less complicated than the US about this. You would have had to live in the UK for 3 years before all this happens anytime in your life and I do not think you even need to be married. Check this with the British embassy they will be helpful. But in my opinion you are good to go no matter where the baby is born and if you are married or not. Look up “Legitimation and Domicile” rules if you want to get technical.

      Marriage in Ukraine or the UK is recognized anywhere in the world. You are married in one country you are married all over the world. I think it does not matter where you get married. The UK will let her in if you have everything in order. Marry based on life and expectations church or civil or family or how she the bride sees the wedding as it is her day. A simple civil marriage by the ocean in the UK or a church wedding in Ukraine, it does not matter it is based on your vision of how you want this special day.
      The governments will work with you as long as you have the documentation.

      I was married in Poland and had no major problem but waiting to move back to the USA. I lived in Poland for many years, it was no big deal. The UK and US and Ukraine have seen this scenario a lot. We live in an international world.

      However, if you want to make things easy as possible I tend to think the UK marriage and birth would make things the smoothest to get married and citizenship. There would be no confusion. Let me know if you have any questions.

  23. I am a half Greek half Filipino person who is looking to marrying an American, my fiancee for quite some time.

    Since this is most likely a reality.. what is going to happen to me? Will I drop my one of my citizenships? The Greek? The Filipino? Or have them all? I once entered USA with a Greek passport under the Visa Waiver Program. So am I allowed to enter with the Filipino passport (with all the visas etc.) if ever Greece got kicked out of the EU?

    And finally.. does the US government care about my taxes in Greece or Philippines before I get married? Or will they care about that when I am finally a US citizen?

    Hoping for you kind response,

    1. Hi Niko, keep all three citizenships no problem. The USA will require all citizens and greencard holders to report all world wide income forever and bank accounts of 10,000 dollars or more worldwide. I am a dual citizen and even living in Europe I report every penny as most if not all of it is excluded as foriegn income. Even if I get paid cash for something I report it. Unless you make over 90,000 dollars it really is not that taxable.
      So the good news is there is nothing to worry about, come and relax and enjoy the wonderful USA, just pay your taxes. Once you live here all year and if you have children you might even get money back though an earned income tax credit.
      Generally the US is a great place to live.

  24. Mark, I apologize I didn’t even say thanks in my first post. When I was typing that I was sort of in a hurry.

    But I’ll take this time to say thank you for your reply. I appreciate it. It actually made my day (in a good way)

    I certainly want to try living there because I will be with my fiancee and of course USA seems like a fantastic place to be in. I’ve had stays in both Greece and the Philippines, but although they are my homes I really enjoyed when I was in the USA.

    So are you saying that for me to get married with my fiancée I am not obliged to report my worldwide income just yet? I understand that once you marry an American citizen you will be a lawful permanent resident there (Green Card holder) and therefore you will be obliged to pay taxes and all those responsibilities (which obviously I will). My question however is, do they do a background check up before I get married with her? (specifically about taxes)

    Right now I am taking up my Masters Degree and I have 2 years to complete it. Can I get married and be given the “choice” to stay here and finish my degree? Or from what I’ve heard, I have to stay there for 4-5 years?

    And yes I would love to keep the three citizenships. Its something that could come in very handy for me.

    Once again, hoping to hear a response from you

    I appreciate your efforts in answering all these queries, good job.

    1. If you are married and not living in the USA but file a separate tax return as and NRA or non-resident alien, you do not have to pay taxes.

      You are obligated to pay taxes to the USA if any of the below is fulfilled:

      1. You are a non-resident alien or any other type of alien and you file a joint return with your spouse.
      2. You earn US-based income or have assets like an US bank account in your name that generates interest or dividends regardless of your visa or citizenship status.
      3. You live in the USA with a green card or work or are married to an US citizen and are an US resident, than you need to pay taxes or at least file a tax return. It is a physical presence test.

      If you are not married and have no US income or assets, and do not live in the USA and are not an US citizen, you are not required from my understanding to pay taxes. I would look up these things on the IRS website before you take my word on it.

      But if you want to finish your degree abroad and do not file joint and have no US income etc, you do not need to file taxes with the USA.

      But there is no way you can get a citizenship from the USA unless you live Physically in the USA with a permanent residence status for at least three years, this includes paying taxes. You can be married for twenty years abroad but will not ever get US citizenship.

  25. I want to go to China and work there.I am wondering whether I can enter China with a tourist visa issued on my Greek passport and then get a working visa through my Canadian passport when I arrive in Beijing. The problem is that my Canadian passport is currently being renewed,and my Greek passport will expire within less than one and a half years so I cannot get a job with such a passport. My passport has to be valid for more than one and a half years in order to get a job there. Can anyone help me with this situation?

    1. I think the law is on paper. I know no way around what is written on paper. I know few countries would bend the law with regards to passports. But the Canadian embassy should get you a passport in weeks. My US one took days so I do not know what the problem is, and I lived in Europe. In days the passport came.

  26. I just stumbled across your website and am thrilled with your wealth of information.

    My mother is from Poland, was born there, and came to the U.S. as a child. My grandparents were also from that region and got married there in the early 1930’s. I have most of the documentation verifying my Polish lineage via their journey to America. I do know however, that parts of Poland were previously under Soviet occupation, and those areas are where my grandparents were from. But between WWI and WWII that area was Poland, and my mother was born in Poland.

    I am about to apply for my certificate of citizenship and am wondering if territorial changes in the border will have any effect on my application. All of my family’s paperwork comes from the Polish government, and today on my mother’s passport (and my birth certificate) her birthplace is listed as Poland.

    Also, how long (roughly) will the whole process take – from applying for my certificate of citizenship and then applying for my passport?

    Thanks for any and all help you can provide!

    1. Good question, however, territory has little to do with citizenship. Polish citizenship is defined by blood not boundaries as for may years there was no Poland.

      1. Mark, you seem very knowledgable on this matter, so I thought I would send you a note. My grandfather was born in Rajgrod. He came to America with his uncle and some other brothers and sisters in Sept. 1922. His parents stayed in Poland and I think were killed in the war. I have the passenger record of the ship they sailed on and my aunt is looking for his passport and other Polish documents. Do you think I have a chance to get dual citizenship? If I were to get it, and remain in America, would I owe Polish tax? Are there laws in Poland regarding reporting of assets? Does Poland have an estate tax or death tax? Is there double taxation if you have both? I know there are laws relating to this in 1918 but I think as my grandfather came in 1922 this may be positive. I have contacted a law firm in Poland and their response is generally positive, but I don’t know if this is because they want to bill me. Please let me know your opinion on this matter based on these facts. I would be interested in knowing any requirements in Poland on nationals and how this would effect my status in USA.

        1. US taxes you have to report no matter where you live but are excluded up to about 90,000 USD based on the physical presence test. If you live in Poland or make income in Poland you have to pay Polish taxes, if you live in the USA do not worry about it.

          I think you can get a green card for Poland but a confirmation of citizenship via grandparents I have not yet seen. I tried but usually too much time went by and there is something in the law that prevents you. You can talk to the Polish embassy in the USA and they will guide you, but I think they can get you a visa which is the first step to Polish citizenship. If your grandfather was born in Poland, somewhere there are records of his birth certificate, I think in Warsaw. This is where they would start. If it was your paternal grandfather, this does give you a small chance of getting citizenship directly as it was passed via the male at the time.

          1. Mark,

            Thanks for the reply. My grandfather was born in Poland and is my mother’s father. I don’t know the rules regarding the blood line in Poland but my understanding was that as my grandfather is Poland born and never served in any military I may have some chance for this. He did not serve and came to America as a boy with his uncle his parents stayed in Poland. I am getting his Polish passport from my aunt and his naturalization papers as well. I don’t know what it will take to get some outcome, but I have interest in this as does my sister. As the Polish blood line is passed by my grandfather, does it matter that my mother has Polish blood and not my father? Do you know the rules for grandchildren of Polish born people claiming citizenship? I am less interested in a visa as I don’t plan to live in Poland at this moment, but would prefer to have free access to all EU countries if I choose. Your advise would be helpful. Thanks.

          2. It all matters. When I put in my application, I made a very detailed spreadsheet of my family tree in excel to show Polish blood with names, dates, and vital information and support documents. If your grandfather was born in Poland and it was your paternal grandfather and he did not serve in the US military I think you have a chance, a reasonable one. Your father would have been born a Polish citizen and that makes you one. In theory, this is all correct. They will help you with the law, in my opinion you do nto need a lawyer. What I think should be done is you contact the Polish embassy in the USA. They will guide you on the process, but if you need help just write and let me know how it progresses.

          3. Mark,

            My grandfather is my Maternal grandfather as he was my mother’s father. Not sure how this effects things. I did contact a law group CK Law regarding this and they have sent a lot of requests for various documents, Naturalization, military statement letter, change of name details etc. A lot of details. I will try to get the documents from my aunt and the agencies who would have this data in the US and try to get a package together. The law firm has been positive about my chances due to the fact of the my grandfather left Poland 1922 and that his family stayed in Poland. Also my grandfather never served in the military and never had a US passport either. So we will see. Your blog is very useful. I checked out your other details on Argentina as I have a love of travel myself. need to go there. If I have any further questions, I appreciate your help. There are docs I must get from various govt depts. maybe you know the procedures on how to get them. Thanks again. Steven

  27. Hi,
    I have seen some cases of obtaining the US citizenship through another dual citizenship. Sounds awkward but I think I have heard about it a lot. A citizenship of Singapore gets the citizenship of Malaysia, and through Malaysian citizenship apply for the US Citizenship and finally gets it. Now the same American Citizen does not show the Singapore citizenship rather declares Malay citizenship only. Will this be a problem for him?
    Also later when he pays visits to Singapore he travels through Singapore Passport and stay there for long time periods. Will there be any difficulty in that for him?
    Your help would be highly appreciated.


  28. Hi Mark,
    I have reviewed several websites talking about gaining the Polish citizenship. They told that : according to the Polish law, you can be Polish after several months simply after buying a plot of land or property of no less than 10,000$ is that true. I have took a look on polish nationality law it doesn’t contain something denotes to the possibility of getting citizenship by investment or economic contribution. If yes can help me by clarification the process. Thanks.

    1. That is a total lie. 10k for an EU citizenship. Not a chance in the world. Those sites do not know what they are talking about. Show me the Polish law codex, I promise you that is not true. If you created like 10,000 jobs in Poland via investment than they might consider you. I mean 10,000 dollars is not a lot of money. Maybe you could by a field in Eastern Poland for that but that is it. And why would anyone give you citizenship for that? Further you have to be a citizen to own land.
      Crazy misinformation on the web.

  29. Hi Mark,
    I’ve just read all the comments above and like most, I’m wanting to apply for dual citizenship for myself. I’m an American living in England. My work visa is expiring January 2nd. I have a grandmother in the states who is from poland. I would like to apply for citizenship but wonder how this will affect me having to leave England on January 2nd. Do I need to submit my passport and visa with my documents for the Polish citizenship? If so, how can I leave the country back to American without my passport in hand?

    1. My brother is a dual UK USA citizen.
      I am a dual Polish US.
      He achieved that because his work sponsored him. But he is a big wig and owned his own London Investment firm.
      What I recommend for you is if your work visa runs out, even if you have to unplug from the UK a bit and live in Poland go for a Polish green card. You have legal right for this. You need to dump as much evidence on them so they can sort it out. I sent pictures when to civil and church records, family letters everything.

      You can create a nice family tree in excel and with hots. Or Pcordialoshop or the design program of your choice. You want to create a conceptual framework and subsequently hang data on it for them to analysis.

      I would recommend starting it with the office of foreigner or the Polish consulate.

      The right is in the Polish constitution.
      The truth is no one knows anything and it is all chaos lawyers told me know other people told me yes, so you have to push the issue. But I know 100% fact that you can get a Polish green card and this can lead to citizenship. I know this as it is in the Polish constitution and could go into more detail about the complexities but you have 100% legal right.


      this site is useful. I worked with them.


      Poland is a great country and I loved living there and will go back. Europe in general is cool. Once you are a dual EU citizen you basically can travel anywhere and do anything. Polish citizenship is handy for example if you go to the Middle East.

      Look If I were you I would fill out the application for green card as to be confirmed a Polish citizen might be harder in your case, but not impossible. You might have to get a Polish address temporarily.

      But you want to live the dream, it takes a little work. But you can do it.

      If your case is being considered they issue a temporary visa until a decision is make.

      Look you do not want to go back to the USA. I love America and everything but you know how it is, especially if you are single and Europe is good for your creativity.

      I know people who got citizenship in 3 months. They were confirmed rather than achieved citizenship.
      About your Mother has to be a citizen is a half truth.
      They have to determine if she was one at birth based on citizenship laws of the time.
      I would have to look at your case in more detail but do not have the time because of work.

      I just moved back to the USA, I live in St. Augustine Florida on an Island slightly off the coast. I am the director af a Luxury resort Hotel. But its getting time consuming and want to get back to creating software etc.
      I like most of my dual citizenship friends go back and forth. My friend Erik has gone back and forth for 15 years. That is him. Creative people find ways to live off the grid

      Do you have to report to the office? If not I would live in Krakow, Poland until you get a visa. Then when they issue a visa you can live anywhere and eventually get a citizenship. Krakow is a rocking city full of expats and opportunities and it is not London but will get you there in no short time.

      But I would not take answers from the Polish Uzad or embassy as Gospel because like I said no one knows. I know for a fact you can get a greencard and eventually a citizenship.

      No Polish required. Alot of my friends have lived 10 years no Polish. Everyone speaks English.
      Polish culture because of communism was ‘nie’ or no is the first answer. Then you have to figure out a way yourself.
      I taught at ESL schools or better yet private students. You could go back to the USA and refund and then return, but there are a zillion jobs in Krakow. More than in the USA where I am.
      I know friends that can give you a hint, but it is more an adventure than a luxury lifestyle. But I lived like a king there, just teaching English. I mean you will only make 25 dollars USD an hour but still, not bad for Eastern Europe. If you have other skills like I did computer or design you make more or less depending.

  30. Dear Mark Thank you for your super helpful comments. I am American, but my mother was a German citizen, all her life. She married an American in Europe, lived in US, passed away in 1987. Do I have the right to apply for dual citizenship in Germany? Secondly, during WWII, my mother and her parents escaped (like so Many) Germany, which after the war became Krakow Poland? They left behind a large estate called Schloss Minkoski. Do I have any rights to claim anything at all, since she she was the only child of the Parents who Lost their home? I realize years have passed, but it was such a painful conversation for my mom, like Millions around our Globe. I am interested to visit and know more. Any suggestions? I have yet to contact the German or Polish Embassy/Consulate.

    Thank you for your time and guidance thru your site for all here.

    1. If your mother was a German citizen I think you can be confirmed on. The consulate will tell you how. I also think you have a very good chance of claiming the estate but you need to work with lawyers in Krakow who specializes in this.

  31. Hi Mark,

    I had a question regarding the tax treaty. I have my own company and can run it over the internet from any location. I was considering basing the company in Poland as I believe I am close to getting approval of my Polish citizenship. I understand there is a tax treaty and as you said there is a tax of 19% flat tax in Poland is this correct? If I wanted to set up an office in Poland and formally register the company there, would I no longer have to file US taxes as I would pay Polish taxes? Can I declare Poland as my tax residency or does the time I spend there matter to the US? I realize I would have to fill out the necessary forms to file to the IRS but I was wondering what the requirements would be in this situation. Also, if I wish to pay taxes in Poland, but may live or travel in the EU perhaps Italy or the UK would that have any effect on paying taxes in Poland if I am not in these countries more than 6 months at a time. I work from my computer. Please advise. Thanks.

    1. The USA does not care about other countries, citizenship or residences tax wise. No matter what your residence or citizenship you have to file US taxes, but you get like a 90k exclusion. So unless you make over $100,000 you have little to worry about as long as you file.
      Polish taxes are 19% flat but it more complicated as you need to also pay ZUS. I think ZUS is much less then the US social security and self employment tax for a schedule C filers if you do it right. I would work with a Polish accountant that knows how to do it as you can get all kind of breaks and EU money for tech companies and new companies etc.

  32. I am Polish and my husband is American. We had a baby born in 2012 in the USA and that is where we live. Can he get Polish citizenship after me and keep his American as well? And how can I do it? Thank you.

    1. Yes the baby is already Polish citizen and you just need to get the child confirmed via the Polish embassy. Not a problem at all, easy. You child can keep both citizenships. I have duel citizenship the US and Poland do not care as long as you are a Polish citizen in Poland and a US citizen in the US.

  33. Mark,

    I found your blog and it has answered a lot of questions for me. I am seeking dual citizenship in Poland but live in America. My great grandmother and great grandfather all immigrated to America from Poland and my grandmother and grandfather are both 100% Polish (some original documentation exists and a lot of copies exist). My grandfather fought for the Polish underground during WW2 (little to no proof of that) and was born to Polish immigrants in Battle Creek Michigan. They did not stay in the US and returned to Poland. To my knowledge neither my grandmother nor grandfather obtained their citizenship. We have numerous relatives in Poland that could provide written statements of familial lineage if needed. My mother and I are interested in obtaining Polish citizenship. My mother is a federal government employee with a pension and social security and she worries that if she were to obtain Polish citizenship she would be taxed on her earning and pension in both Poland and the US. Can I apply for citizenship without my mother applying? Do you know if there is an English version of the application for citizenship? Do you think we have a case for citizenship?

    1. The US is the country that pursues its citizens world wide for taxes, Poland does not really. Besides there are allowances that exclude double taxation on foreign income to a limit. However, that is a good questions. I would say most Poles abroad do not report anything if they legally live and are taxed abroad (like the US or Canada). But US taxes must be reported no matter where you live. However, I can not give you Polish tax advice just what people tell me.

      That being said, I think you have a reasonable case regardless of what your mother does. I think if she is confirmed Polish citizen for purposes of your citizenship, or just stated on your argument when you apply it does not matter. You have to apply and document and put your case together and wait and see.

      All applications and communications have to be made in the official language of Poland. The US does not have an official language, Poland does. So they can not communicate in anything but Polish. Not an issue just get some student to help you.

  34. Hi, I’m Ellen.

    I do currently have a dual citizenship (born in Norway, migrated to the UK when I was 4, have been a British citizen since then as Mother is British and Father is Norwegian).

    I really would like to move to the US in a couple of years and I’m doing my best to research as much as I can. Being half Norwegian I know I can apply through the green card lottery, but would I have to renounce my British citizenship?

    I plan on getting a Scholarship in California after I graduate from my Under graduate course in 2 years. So I figure a Green Card would definitely be helpful with that.

    Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    1. You do not have to worry about renouncing your citizenship from a US perspective the US does not care. All they care about is you pay your taxes, support yourself and obey the law. They do not care about duel citizenship. I am a duel Polish citizen and US and my brother a UK and USA. All that really matters is you pay your taxes to the USA. Only a country like Ukraine or Russia it might be more complicated, even that I have heard people do not report.

      Go for it the USA is wonderful and you will love it. It is a different culture than Europe. I drive through the backwoods of the South and I think I am in a time machine, but it is very exciting.

  35. Hi Mark,

    Niko here. How are you? I hope all is well. Again thank you for your time and answering my questions. So it looks like me and my fiancée will get married this coming August. I’m curious though. I know I will have to stay in the States for a minimum of 3 years, pay taxes and all that. During this whole time, I will still be considered a Greek citizen right? Because technically I haven’t acquired American citizenship yet. Now lets assume that day comes when I can apply for American citizenship, what happens to my Greek? Will it be dropped? Does the Greek government decide whether it can be dropped? (Aka giving me permission first) or since Greece allows dual citizenship then it wouldn’t matter while obtaining American citizenship too?

    Finally, Greek law states that if I’m a permanent resident abroad (living outside Greece for 11 years) which is true for me, then I don’t have to serve for the military. If I apply for US citizenship, will I have to complete military duty first before granting me the American citizenship? Or since I’m technically still a “permanent resident abroad” (living outside Greece still) then I’m still exempted from military service therefore no change on military status?

    Any help or if you’ve got concrete information I will truly appreciate, mark.

    All the best

    1. I am not an legal expert but based on my experience with European countries, and their relations with the USA, my friends that have duel citizenship have not had to serve in the military. The military is a terrible waste of youthful years or months even. I do not think it is popular not for EU governments to pursue you who live abroad regarding such things. All my friends that are duel citizens just ignored it and nothing happened. I do not know if Greece will, but that is what I heard. Also your Greek citizenship stay in tact when you become an US citizen. When you enter the US you will be American and bound by these laws, while in Greece you are Greek. The only exception is if you live in Greece you still must file US taxes. When I lived in Poland I was a duel citizen but got advice from the US embassy as well as the Polish government. Most governments really do not care about this, as long as you are legal in their country.

  36. Hi Mark

    Just thought I would throw you a question in regards to Dual Citizenship.

    My scenario is that I have both Australian & Polish/EU Passports.
    I have lived and worked in Australia all my life. If I was to go to Poland and try to find work there or any of the EU countries for that matter, would I be able to claim unemployment benefits even though i have not directly contributed via taxes in Europe? I have worked and paid my taxes here in Australia but not anywhere in Europe.

    Its been a dream of mine to live and work abroad, but i know its hard to find work and was wondering if I would be able to claim anything if it took me a while to find work.
    Hoping you can help me out on this

    1. Unemployment in Poland and the EU works basically like anywhere, you have had to be paying into the system while working in the country for a given amount of time. If you worked in Poland for a couple of years and got laid off because of labor force reduction you could in theory collect unemployment as long as you report like 5 employers a week you have contacted for work. Then you will get you 200 dollars a month for unemployment benefits. If you just move to Poland you have not been paying into the Polish systems so there is zero chance you will get it or anywhere else in Europe.

      I am not employed with a job now and I have not claimed unemployment and I have a family. You can always find something, even at a fast food restaurant. There are a zillion jobs out there, just low paid ones, but that is about the pay of unemployment. You could teach English. You could be a street performer, or clean fish. There are always ways to make money.

  37. I was born in Australia to Polish parents. Last October, I was in Krakow and made an application for Polish citizenship by seeing a lawyer and providing him with the supporting documentation.

    I returned home to Sydney in November.

    Yesterday, I got an email from my lawyer advising that i am now officially a Polish citizen. The news filled me with extreme joy 🙂

    All I have to do now is apply for a passport and PESL which will not take long.

    This is going to open up a world of opportunities, especially with my career and business aspirations.

    Exciting times ahead people 🙂

    If anyone is thinking of becoming a citizen and needs a good lawyer, let me know. He is a bit expensive but it is worth every cent.

    I just wanted to share my excitement with the world.

    Bless all who reads this.

  38. Could you please explain more about how to get a polish greencard for USA citizens with Polish roots. My mother was born in Poland. According to the treaty 1944 between Polish and Soviet Ukraine’ governments she and her family were expelled from the country to Soviet Ukraine in 1946 and later to Siberia where I was born.

    My mother never had a chance to go back to Poland. We moved from Kemerovo Western Siberia to Ukraine after Soviet Union collapsed 1992 and the Ukraine become an independent country. My mother passed away in May 2013 in town of Ivano-Frankovsk it is in Ukraine.

    From I know people like my mom cannot get a Polish card because of the treaty between two communist governments deprived Ukrainian people lives.

    Is it anything possible to get back our human rights regarding my family case.
    I’ll appreciate for your reply


    1. Oksana, As far as I am concerned you have rights to live in Poland and eventually become a Polish/EU citizen. If you have Polish roots it does not matter you live in Australia or Africa or Ukraine. If you are of Polish blood you have rights for a visa and citizenship. You simply need to go through the process I did. That is start the application and talk to people, but national political boundaries do not matter when it comes to repatriation.

  39. Entering.
    Tho clarify. When in possession of two passports, in this case a US and Polish documents, you can enter Poland on the US passport, but for a limited time. The reverse is of course impossible, as one would have to have a US visa in the Polish passport and US would never issue a visa to an already US citizen.

    Yes the initial almost USD90 is exempt, as long as you are outside of the US not for a calendar year, but for a full tax year for which you are filing,. with an exception of a limited time visit to the US during this period.

    Entering a marriage for a citizenship in Poland.
    All citizenships in Poland to foreign nationals, including a spouse are subject to approval by the office of The President of Poland and are not easy to obtain as they also require the non-Polish spouse to establish permanent residence in Poland. A Polish national with a foreign spouse can however obtain a Polish citizenship for their child born in the US, via a nearby consulate or the Polish Embassy, but it is a time consuming process taking about 4-6 months assuming all your paperwork is in order. Can be significantly more difficult for a naturalized US citizen due to his birthplace outside of the US.

    In summary, it is actually significantly more difficult to obtain a Polish citizenship than in example a US citizenship for a foreigner.

  40. Mark,

    You are an amazing wealth of information. Many thanks for sharing it with us. I hope this thread is still alive because I have a few questions.

    My husband of 2 years is a dual citizen of Poland and the US. He has been living in the states since 1987 and would like to return to Poland for a few years to spend time with his family (especially as they are quite elderly now). He will be keeping his US-based job and working remotely in Poland. Obviously, we will pay US taxes, but will we need to pay taxes in Poland as well after 183 days? I’ve tried to research double taxation, but I haven’t seen anything regarding keeping a US job, only what to do if you have a Poland-based job. Does Poland have anything like the foreign income tax credit? Or will they only tax a portion of our income, since it’s already being taxed in the US? We’ve emailed our Polish consulate here, but we haven’t gotten any response as of yet. We are very worried that we’ll be taxed so much that we won’t be able to go.


    1. The rule is the US taxes citizens pay taxes on full income no matter where they live and no matter what. However, the US will a allow you to exclude about 90k of your income if you are subject to Polish taxes. Therefore, any income over the limit is taxed.
      The Polish rule generally is, Poland taxes based on location, or tax home. So if you live in the US and work in a shop you will not pay Polish taxes. But if you live in Poland more than half the year you pay Polish taxes.
      The treaty between the US and Poland tries to account for this. That means they try no to double tax you under 90k. If your husband lived in Poland even if the income is US based, I think you would pay Polish taxes and anything over the 90k or so limit US taxes also. I am not an expert or giving advice, this is opinion and you can certainly find tax experts in Poland that know this rule as they work with expats. I recommend keep searching and do not be afraid to pay for advice if the amounts are large. The IRS gives good free advice. I recommend calling them as well as the Polish Uząd Skarbowy.

  41. Mark,

    I am of Polish decent (half) and have recently visited Poland for the first time in my life at age 35. Long story short: love the country, the people and the feeling of ‘being at home where it all started’ vibe. After looking around on topics on Polish citizenship, I came across several sites that mentioned the “Polish by decent” option for citizenship, and wanted to run two key things by you while I collect and present the details/dates/etc. from my family tree for possible submission to the Polish government.

    Obstacle #1
    Both of my maternal great-grandparents (grandmother’s and grandfather’s families) were born in Poland and emigrated to the US in the early part of the 20th century. My grand-parents had a similar path like most emigrants at this time: both born in one of the small coal-mining villages in PA in the 19-teens and moved to Chicago during WWI. My mother was then born during WWII in Chicago.

    Do I lose the “blood lines” d/t back-to-back generational births [before mine] in the United States? Or does the fact that 100% of all ancestry on my maternal side of the family is Polish still help/aid/assist in this endeavor?

    Obstacle #2
    I am US military. Does that default the option/ability to pursue said citizenship [from the country of Poland’s perspective]?

    Many thanks in advance.

    1. You can get a green card rather than a citizenship if your line is maternal and way back. That with time can convert to citizenship. About the Military, that completes things, you could wait until you are done with that if you are active.

  42. Hello, thank you for all the information here. I am interested in learning more about taxes for dual citizens of Poland and USA. I understand the USA requires you to report and file yearly no matter what, but if I obtain Polish citizenship and move to Poland, how will my retirement earnings be affected in Poland? Such as social security, pensions, and USA based interest. Will Poland tax me on these earnings if I live there? What if I never move, but still obtain dual Polish citizenship, will they be able to come after me in the USA?

    What if I move to another EU country like Ireland ? Will Poland want taxes in addition to USA and Ireland? Thanks for the help.

    1. I am not a tax expert nor giving advice. However, what people have told me is this, if you live in a country you pay taxes for that country, but the US has a treaty where you are exempt to a certain level, lets say 90k. Basically after 100k you will be subject to double taxation. Poland generally does not pursue taxation of Polish citizens in the USA, you have to research this.

  43. It is disgenuine to claim that claiming dual citizenship only has only benefits and it does not come with any strings attached. It is very depended on a person’s situation.

    First of all, which relates to all dual-citizens is that in Poland, you are treated only as Polish. You cannot claim citizenship of another country before Polish authorities. In event of legal problems such as arrest, the consulate of the second citizenship will not help you if you are also citizen of Poland. If you were accused of doing drugs or DUI, you as Polish citizen might have to commute a sentence in Poland.
    In practice, most people have no problems with the law.

    Second, in the US, claiming dual citizenship may impeded in future obtaining a secret security clearance if someone plans to work for a US government or private contractor that deals with US government. Possessing dual citizenship is usually not problem but actively claiming it is.

    See this for more information:
    source: https://www.state.gov/m/ds/clearances/60321.htm#c

    Guideline C:
    Foreign Preference

    9. The Concern. When an individual acts in such a way as to indicate a preference for a foreign country over the United States, then he or she may be prone to provide information or make decisions that are harmful to the interests of the United States.
    10. Conditions that could raise a security concern and may be disqualifying include:

    (a) exercise of any right, privilege or obligation of foreign citizenship after becoming a U.S. citizen or through the foreign citizenship of a family member. This includes but is not limited to:

    (1) possession of a current foreign passport;

    (2) military service or a willingness to bear arms for a foreign country;
    (3) accepting educational, medical,
    retirement, social welfare, or other such benefits from a foreign country;
    (4) residence in a foreign country to meet citizenship requirements;
    (5) using foreign citizenship to protect financial or business interests in another country;
    (6) seeking or holding political office in a foreign country;
    (7) voting in a foreign election;

    (b) action to acquire or obtain recognition of a foreign citizenship by an American citizen;

    (c) performing or attempting to perform duties, or otherwise acting, so as to serve the interests of a foreign person, group, organization, or government in conflict with the national security interest;
    (d) any statement or action that shows allegiance to a country other than the United States: for example, declaration of intent to renounce United States citizenship; renunciation of United States citizenship.

    11. Conditions that could mitigate security concerns include:

    (a) dual citizenship is based solely on parents’ citizenship or birth in a foreign country;

    (b) the individual has expressed a willingness to renounce dual citizenship;

    (c) exercise of the rights, privileges, or obligations of foreign citizenship occurred before the individual became a U.S. citizen or when the individual was a minor;

    (d) use of a foreign passport is approved by the cognizant security authority;

    (e) the passport has been destroyed, surrendered to the cognizant security authority, or otherwise invalidated;

    (f) the vote in a foreign election was encouraged by the United States Government.

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