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How can I obtain Spanish citizenship being a U.S. resident?

Immigration Law

Antonio Flores Vila

28th of November 1999

Q. My mother's parents were born in Spain and then immigrated to the US. My mother was born in the US. My mother does not have Spanish citizenship, but would be willing to apply for it. I am considering returning to Spain to live and work.
  1. Is there any way for me (born in the US) to obtain Spanish citizenship?
  2. How difficult do you think this would be?
  3. What is process by which I would obtain citizenship?
  4. Who would I contact to begin the process?
  5. If I were living in Spain and in the process of getting citizenship, would my wife be allowed to work in Spain?

Art Wagner
United States of America

    A. The answers to your questions are listed below:

    1. Being born in the U.S. of American parents only entitles you to apply for residence after you have resided in Spain for ten years. You do not qualify for a shorter period. However, your mum does, in that she is originally Spanish according to the Spanish Civil code, and one year of residence in Spain will suffice.
    2. It is more a matter of time and patience than of difficulty to apply for spanish citizenship.
    3. The process is by means of an application which is approved by the Ministry of justice.
    4. A lawyer would be the best choice, better if he is fluent in your language.
    5. Living in Spain would allow your wife to reside in Spain with a family residence permit, although she would have to apply for a work permit.

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