Naturalization and Recovery of Nationality

Naturalization and Recovery of Nationality

Important

You as a foreigner must submit the documents for application or report by yourself and you cannot delegate anybody according to the Korea nationality law.

You must schedule a visit to the immigration office to submit the documents. You can also follow the policy of the competent Korean embassy or consulate when you stay overseas.

Application for naturalization of minor children can be accompanied with your application for naturalization or nationality recovery.

Review time is 1 year to 1.5 years. If you depart completely after applying at the immigration office, your application will be rejected. Temporary departure may have your application be delayed.

 

Requirements for application for naturalization

1. General naturalization

The requirements are as follows:

  • You must live for more than 5 years consecutively in Korea.
  • You must have permanent resident status (F-5) at present.
  • You are 19 years old and older at present.
  • You must be well-behaved without specific criminal records.
  • You must have the ability to make a living. It means you must earn more than Korean GNI last year or have assets of 60,000,000 KRW worth.
  • You must have basic social skills: It means you must have Korean language proficiency and understand Korean customs. It will be checked by comprehensive test and interview.

General naturalization type is needed for persons who cannot meet requirements for simplified or special naturalization. The procedures of this type will be more strict than the other two types.

 

2. Simplified naturalization for Korea connected person

The requirements are as follows:

  • You must live for more than 3 years consecutively in Korea.
  • You are 19 years old and older at present.
  • You must have the connection with Korea like these:
    • Your father or mother or ancestors were Korean nationals before immigrating to another country.
    • You were born in Korea and your father or mother whose nationality is not Korean were also born in Korea. For example, you are descended from overseas Chinese or western missionaries.
    • You are an adoptee of Korean nationals and you were an adult at the time of adoption.
  • You must be well-behaved without specific criminal records.
  • You must have the ability to make a living. It means you must have assets of 30,000,000 KRW worth or you must be employed or will be employed imminently.
  • You must have basic social skills.

 

3. Simplified naturalization for spouse

The requirements are as follows:

  • You are one of the following:
    • You married a Korean and lived for more than 2 years consecutively without breaking up.
    • You marreid a Korean 3 years ago and lived for more than 1 years consecutively without breaking up.
    • You broke up marriage like divorce, death, or missing without your own default or you have to raise your minor child.
  • You must be well-behaved without specific criminal records.
  • You must have the ability to make a living. It means you must have assets of 30,000,000 KRW worth or you must be employed or will be employed imminently.
  • You must have basic social skills.

 

4. Special naturalization

The requirements are as follows:

  • You are one of the following:
    • Your father or mother is a Korean national. For example, you are an adoptee and you were a minor at the time of the adoption. your father or mother are naturalized or have recovered Korean nationality.
    • You made a special contribution to the country or you are a special talent of science, sports, etc.
  • You must be well-behaved without specific criminal records.
  • You must have basic social skills.

 

Other ways to acquire a Korean nationality

There are some other ways to acquire a nationality. The preparation process is almost the same as naturalization.

1. Unmarried child recognition

Father or mother of a Korean national can acknowledge unmarried foreign child minor and report at the competent immigration office or the Korean embassy or consulate. On the other hand, if the father or mother of a Korean national acknowledges his or her child before birth, the child will be a natural born Korean.

 

2. Concurrent acquisition

When a father or mother applies for naturalization or recovery of nationality, his or her minor child can apply for naturalization together.

 

3. Reacquisition of nationality

If you failed to renounce your foreign nationality or did not pledge not to exercise your foreign nationality within 1 year after permission of naturalization even if you are eligible to pledge, you will lose Korean nationality. However, if it is because of a natural disaster or unavoidable reason, you can renounce within 10 days after the incident.

But even if you lost Korean nationality, you can reacquire it when you renounce your foreign nationality and report to the competent immigration office or the Korean embassy or consulate within 1 year after loss of nationality.

 

4. Recovery of nationality

If you were Korean nationals before, you must recover nationality instead of naturalization.

It will take about 6 months to get permission.

If you are over 65 and want dual citizenship, you must ask the immigration office or immigraion expert in your country whether you will lose your current nationality before applying for recovery.

 

5. Determination of nationality

When it is unclear if you are Korean national, you can apply for determination of nationality.

Usually North Korean defectors and overseas Koreans will be the case.

 

Services

I can provide the services below for you.

  • I can guide whole requirements and documents for these applications.
  • I can write certain documents required.