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Loss of Dutch citizenship can occur automatically and in certain situations, you may not be immediately aware of it. Dutch citizenship can also be revoked.

Automatic loss of Dutch nationality may occur if you:

  • obtain another nationality voluntarily
  • live abroad for 10 years or longer with dual nationality and fail to timely renew your Dutch passport (e.g. within 10 years of the date of issuance of your last passport)

We urge you to contact one of our expert nationality lawyers for advice if this happened to you. Recovering Dutch nationality is a laborious process at best; in some cases, it may be impossible.

Dual nationality

The Netherlands seeks to avoid dual nationalities. Therefore, when you obtain another nationality, your Dutch nationality automatically lapses. It is however possible to obtain another nationality without losing Dutch citizenship when you:

  • are the spouse or registered partner of a non-Dutch national and assume your partner’s nationality
  • were born in the country of your other nationality and live there when you obtain that nationality
  • lived in the country of your other nationality continuously for 5 years before your 18th birthday

Passport expiration

When you have dual citizenship and live outside the EU for 10 consecutive years or longer, you could lose your Dutch nationality if you do not renew your Dutch passport within 10 years of the issue date. The issuance of the new passport should take place within the 10-year term.

No longer Dutch without your knowledge

Because in the above-mentioned cases Dutch nationality expires automatically, you may not always be aware of this loss. We regularly hear stories from (former) Dutch citizens abroad who did not realize they, or their children, lost Dutch citizenship. 

The National Ombudsman has called attention to the issue in his report Verlies Nederlanderschap (in Dutch, 2016). The government responded to the report with a number of measures as part of an amendment to the Dutch Citizenship Act. However, this amendment has been voted down by the Senate in October 2017.

Revocation of Dutch nationality

The Dutch authorities can revoke your Dutch nationality if you:

  • did not do everything in your power to renounce your other nationalities, if you are required to do so
  • committed fraud during the naturalization or option procedure
  • are convicted of a crime against the national safety of the Netherlands
  • engage in (preparation of) an act of terrorism. 

For more information or advice, please contact Hermie de Voer, Bram van Melle, Vera Kidjan, Elles Besselsen or Mirjam den Besten.

Option and Naturalization Fees 2020

From 1 January 2020 new government fees will be applicable.

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Obtaining dual nationality

As a result of our partnership with IN Amsterdam (formerly known as the Amsterdam expat center), we recently published an article about obtaining dual nationality on the I Amsterdam Living portal. A subsection of the official Amsterdam municipality website, this English-language portal offers all kinds of practical information for expats.

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Podcast: Hermie de Voer on Dutch citizenship

Nationality law expert Hermie de Voer spoke to Eelco Keij of SNBN (Dutch Outside The Netherlands Foundation) in the first podcast of a new series. 

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Dual nationality, privilege or choice?

Dual nationality gets a fair bit of media attention lately. In recent news several Moroccan-Dutch citizens asked political support for their right to renounce their Moroccan nationality. At the same time a majority of the House of Representatives proposed a Brexit-emergency law that will allow Dutch citizens in the UK to keep their Dutch nationality in case they obtain the British nationality. How does that work?

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Changes in civic integration exam for naturalization from abroad

From July 1st 2019, the Dutch regulations concerning the naturalization exam from abroad have changed. These changes affect those who want to apply for Dutch citizenship from abroad and are planning to take the civic integration exam for naturalization at the Dutch consulate or embassy in their country of residence.

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Seminar on nationality law

On September 10th, 2019,  a seminar on nationality law will be held in Antwerp, organized by the Migration law Foundation Netherlands (SMN) and the Specialist Association of Migration Lawyers (SVMA), in a collaboration with Everaert Advocaten. 

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Judgment of the Court of Justice of the EU in Tjebbes case

The judgment of the European Court of Justice in the case Tjebbes and Others/ Minister for Foreign Affairs concerning automatic loss of Dutch citizenship has been published.

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