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Bulgaria

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Missing description
National Flag of
Република България (bul)
Currency
BGN
Area Code
+359
Capital
Sofia
Region
Eastern Europe
Native Languages
Bulgarian
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Citizenship Act of Bulgaria

CITIZENSHIP ACT IN BULGARIA

October 1968

This Act was promulgated in State Gazette, No. 79 of 11 October 1968. The subsequent amendments were promulgated in State Gazette, No. 36 of 1979, No. 64 of 1986 and No. 38 of 1989.

GENERAL PROVISIONS

1. Bulgarian citizenship shall be acquired or lost under the provisions of this Act.

2. Citizenship shall not be determined through the court.

3. For the purposes of this Act, lawful age, minority and nonage shall be determined pursuant to the legislation of the Republic of Bulgaria.

4. Marriage of a Bulgarian citizen to an alien shall not affect the citizenship of the former and shall not attach Bulgarian citizenship to the latter.

5. Adoption shall not change the citizenship of the adopted.

TITLE I - ACQUISITION OF BULGARIAN CITIZENSHIP

Chapter One - Acquisition of Bulgarian Citizenship by Origin

6. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No, 64 of 1986 and No. 38 of 1989] Every person born to parents who are Bulgarian citizens or to one citizen and one alien parent shall be a Bulgarian citizen.

Chapter Two - Acquisition of Bulgarian Citizenship by Place of Birth

7. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989] The following shall be Bulgarian citizens by place of birth:

(a) a person born in the People's Republic of Bulgaria of alien parentage, Provided, That he does not acquire foreign citizenship by origin;

(b) a person born in the People's Republic of Bulgaria to stateless parents or to parents of unknown citizenship;

(c) a person born to stateless parents or to parents of unknown citizenship on a Bulgarian vessel or aircraft, entered in the registers of the People's Republic of Bulgaria;

(d) a child of unknown parentage found in the People's Republic of Bulgaria.

The provisions of paragraphs a), b) and c) shall also apply to cases when one of the parents is unknown.

Chapter Three - Bulgarian Citizenship Through Naturalization

8. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989] An alien may acquire Bulgarian citizenship if he has resided continuously on the territory of the People's Republic of Bulgaria for at least five years by the date of filing his application for citizenship.

9. In special cases or for extraordinary contributions to the People's Republic of Bulgaria, Bulgarian citizenship may be acquired in the absence of the conditions prescribed in Article 8.

10. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 64 of 1986 and No. 38 of 1989] A person of Bulgarian nationality may acquire Bulgarian citizenship in the absence of the conditions prescribed in Article 8.

11. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989] An alien, a stateless person or a person of unknown citizenship may acquire Bulgarian citizenship in the absence of the conditions prescribed in Article 8 if his parents were or are Bulgarian citizens or if one parent was or is a Bulgarian citizen and the other is stateless or of unknown citizenship. This also applies to a person adopted by a Bulgarian citizen.

12. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989] An alien, a stateless person or a person of unknown citizenship married to a Bulgarian citizen may acquire Bulgarian citizenship in the absence of the conditions prescribed in Article 8.

13. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989] A refugee who is a foreign citizen, stateless or of unknown citizenship may acquire Bulgarian citizenship in the absence of the conditions prescribed in Article 8 provided That he has settled permanently in the People's Republic of Bulgaria.

14. A person under 14 years of age shall acquire Bulgarian citizenship if both parents or the surviving parent acquire Bulgarian citizenship or, when one of the parents is a Bulgarian citizen and the other an alien, the latter acquires Bulgarian citizenship. A person between 14 and 18 years of age shall acquire Bulgarian citizenship under the same conditions if he applies for it.

15. A person under 14 years of age of one citizen and one alien parent who does not have Bulgarian citizenship may acquire Bulgarian citizenship in the absence of the conditions prescribed in Article 8 if both parents or the surviving parent give their written consent for this. A person between 14 and 18 years of age may acquire Bulgarian citizenship under the same conditions if he applies for this.

[New: "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989] The consent of a parent is not required if he has lost legal custody of the child or when the acquisition of Bulgarian citizenship is in the interests of the child.

TITLE II - REVOCATION OF NATURALIZATION, RELEASE FROM OR DIVESTMENT OF BULGARIAN CITIZENSHIP AND RESTORATION OF BULGARIAN CITIZENSHIP

Chapter Four - Release from Bulgarian Citizenship

16. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 64 of 1986 and No. 38 of 1989] A Bulgarian citizen may acquire foreign citizenship only if he has been released from Bulgarian citizenship. He shall remain Bulgarian citizen till the expiry of the term fixed in Article 29.

17. Only persons who have settled or provided for the settlement of their obligations in this country to the State, state-owned enterprises, cooperatives and other public organizations, as well as their obligations proceeding from inadmissible damage and their alimony obligations may be released from Bulgarian citizenship. Persons under common criminal investigation or trial or persons with sentences subject to execution shall not be released from Bulgarian citizenship.

[Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989] No person shall be released from Bulgarian citizenship if this poses a threat to national security interests, notwithstanding the provisions of the above paragraphs.

18. The release of parents from Bulgarian citizenship shall also release their children under 14 years of age, provided this has been explicitly requested. The release of children aged between 14 and 18 shall require their consent. When only one of the parents has applied for release from Bulgarian citizenship, his children may be released from Bulgarian citizenship under the conditions of the previous paragraph only with the consent of the other parent. The consent of the latter is not required if he has lost legal custody of the child.

Chapter Five - Revocation of Naturalization

19. Bulgarian citizenship acquired through naturalization may be revoked in cases of willful misrepresentation of facts which served as grounds for acquiring Bulgarian citizenship. Revocation of the naturalization of one spouse shall not revoke that of the other provided it was not based on the same willful misrepresentation of facts. Revocation of naturalization shall not be possible upon the expiry of five years after its acquisition.

Chapter Six- Divestment of Bulgarian Citizenship

20. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989] A person guilty of a grave crime against the People's Republic of Bulgaria, harming the security and the interests of this country, may be divested of Bulgarian citizenship. Divestment of Bulgarian citizenship may be decreed only in respect to persons who are abroad. Divestment of Bulgarian citizenship of one spouse shall not affect the citizenship of the other and that of their children. A person divested of Bulgarian citizenship may be deprived of his property or part of it for the benefit of the State. Distraints and prohibitions and other security measures may be imposed to guarantee the confiscation of property. The State shall be liable for the debts of a person divested of Bulgarian citizenship to third parties accrued prior to the issue of the State Council Decree under Article 27 within the to the amount of the confiscated property.

Chapter Seven - Restoration of Bulgarian Citizenship

21. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989] The citizenship of a person released from Bulgarian citizenship may be restored at his request.

22. The citizenship of a person divested of Bulgarian citizenship may be restored if it is proved that there were no grounds for divestment of citizenship or if these grounds are no longer valid. Property confiscated for the benefit of the State under Article 20 shall be restored and if this proves impossible the person shall be compensated with money or suitable real estate.

23. [Repealed: "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989].

24. Children under 14 years of age of parents whose Bulgarian citizenship has been restored shall become Bulgarian citizens. This shall also apply to children aged between 14 and 18 if they have expressed a wish to become Bulgarian citizens. When only one of the parents wishes restoration of his Bulgarian citizenship, the children may acquire Bulgarian citizenship only with the consent of the other parent. The consent of the other parent shall not be necessary if he has lost legal custody of the child or if this is in the interests of the child.

TITLE III - LEGAL PROCEDURE

Bulgarian Citizenship related Legal Procedures

25. [Amended; "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989] Acquisition of Bulgarian citizenship through naturalization, release from Bulgarian citizenship and restoration of Bulgarian citizenship shall take place at the request of the interested person. In the case of children under 14 years of age, the applications shall be filed by their parents or guardians and in the case of children between 14 and 18 years of age applications shall be countersigned by their parents or guardians. In the case of disagreement between children between 14 and 18 years of age and their parents or guardians, the Minister of Justice shall decide whether to proceed with the application. The consent of a parent shall not be required if he has lost legal custody of the child or if this is in the interests of the child.

26. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989] Applications for acquiring, release from or restoration of Bulgarian citizenship, as well as proposals for Revocation of naturalization and for divestment of Bulgarian citizenship shall be addressed to the Minister of Justice. When the applicant lives abroad, the application shall be filed through a diplomatic or consular representation of the People's Republic of Bulgaria.

27. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 38 of 1989] A person shall be granted, restored or divested of Bulgarian citizenship by decree of the State Council. The decree shall enter into force an the date of its issuance. The Ministry of Justice shall issue a document reflecting the change in citizenship status.

28. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 36 of 1979] The Ministry of Justice shall, notify the municipal people's councils of any changes in the citizenship of persons residing on their territories for the purpose of their entering into the population registers.

29. [Amended: "State Gazette" issue No. 64 of 1986] A decree on the release of a person from Bulgarian citizenship shall lose its validity if the person released of Bulgarian citizenship does not leave the territory of the People's Republic of Bulgaria within a year after the date of its issuance.

Bulgarian Citizenship Act

FINAL PROVISIONS

30. All persons holding Bulgarian citizenship under the 1948 Bulgarian Citizenship Act on the day of the coming into force of the present Act shall be considered Bulgarian citizens.

31. An interdepartmental commission on issues related to the implementation of this Act shall be set up with the Council of Ministers. The Minister of Justice shall appoint the Commission after receiving the proposals of the respective government departments.

32. The Minister of Justice shall issue regulations governing the implementation of Title III of this Act.

33. This Act shall repeal the 1948 Bulgarian Citizenship Act.

The Minister of Justice shall be in charge of the implementation of this act.