In order to transmit U.S. citizenship to your child, you will need to meet the following criteria:
At least one parent having the nationality of United States at the time of child’s birth
PROOF OF U.S. CITIZENSHIP
You may prove U.S. citizenship with any of the following:
- Current or previous U.S. Passport (mutilated, altered, or damaged passports are not acceptable as evidence of U.S. citizenship.)
- Certified birth certificate issued by the city, county or state.
- A certified birth certificate has a registrar’s raised, embossed, impressed or multicolored seal, registrar’s signature, and the date the certificate was filed with the registrar’s office, which must be within 1 year of your birth
- Consular Report of Birth Abroad or Certification of Birth
- Naturalization Certificate
- Certificate of Citizenship
If you cannot provide one of the above documents:
A Delayed Birth Certificate filed more than one year after your birth may be acceptable if it lists the documentation used to create it, and is signed by the attending physician or midwife, or lists an affidavit signed by the parents, or shows early public records.
If you do not have a previous U.S. passport or a certified birth certificate, you will need:
- Letter of “No Record found”, issued by the Vital Statistics office of the state of your birth stating your name, date of birth, which years were searched for a birth record and that there is no birth certificate on file for you, and as many of the following as possible:
- baptismal certificate
- hospital birth certificate
- census record
- early school record
- family bible record
- doctor’s record of post-natal care
These documents must be early public records showing the date and place of birth, preferably created within the first five years of the applicant’s life.
You may also submit an Affidavit of Birth (PDF 27KB), Form DS-10, from an older blood relative, i.e., a parent, aunt, uncle, sibling, who has personal knowledge of your birth. It must be notarized or have the seal and signature of the acceptance agent.
If you were born abroad and do not have a Consular Report of Birth Abroad or Certificate of Birth on file, you will need other documentation as shown below.
If you claim citizenship through birth abroad to one U.S. citizen parent:
- Foreign birth certificate,
- Proof of citizenship of your U.S. citizen parent, AND
- An affidavit of your U.S. citizen parent showing all periods and places of residence or physical presence in the United States and abroad before your birth.
If you claim citizenship through birth abroad to two U.S. citizen parents:
- Your foreign birth certificate,
- Parent’s marriage certificate, AND
- Proof of citizenship of your U.S. parents and an affidavit of your U.S. citizen parents showing all periods and places of residence of physical presence in the United States and abroad before your birth.
The following are not proof of citizenship:
- Voter registration cards.
- Army discharge papers.
- Information on foreign-born children adopted by U.S. citizens.
The existence of a blood relationship between the child and U.S. citizen parent(s)
PROOF OF BLOOD RELATIONSHIP
You may prove a blood relationship with any of the following:
- Prenatal records and/or other evidence of mother’s pregnancy.
Please bring original documents and photocopies. These are helpful in establishing the existence of the pregnancy as well as the biological relationship of the child to the mother, regardless of her citizenship. Ultrasound reports can assist the Embassy in ascertaining the probable conception period.
- Evidence of the couple’s physical presence in the same location at the time of conception.
Please provide a notarized copy of the U.S. citizen’s passport (all pages) in lieu of the original. (Note: Documents should be notarized by a U.S. commissioned notary or U.S. consular officer). Flight records and/or entry and exit records from a country may also be helpful.
- Evidence of the couple’s relationship prior to the conception of the applicant.
The burden of proving a claim to U.S. citizenship, including a blood relationship, is on the person making such claim. Photos prior to the time of conception, letters, and other correspondence may help establish the couple’s relationship prior to the conception of the applicant. Bring original documents and photocopy of each.
Genetic DNA testing is a useful tool for verifying a stated biological relationship when no other form of credible evidence is available, and may be suggested at the time of your appointment. In this case, instructions will be given at the time of your appointment. Please see the Department of State’s website for more information.
NOTE: Do not initiate DNA testing unless it was recommended by the Embassy for your pending CRBA application. A DNA test done independently and not according to Department of State procedures will not be accepted.
U.S. citizen parent(s)’ presence in the United States prior to the child’s birth
There are different requirements for the transmission of citizenship to a child based on the year the child was born, the marital status of the parents, and whether the father, mother or both parents are U.S. citizens. The U.S. citizen parent must have been a U.S. citizen when the child was born. U.S. citizen parent(s) will be required to demonstrate physical presence in the United States prior to the birth of the child. View transmission requirements at the U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs website.
- One U.S. citizen parent, married: at least 5 years before the child’s birth. The period does not have to be consecutive, but the total must be at least 5 years, 2 years of which must be after age 14.
- Two U.S. citizen parents, married: any length period of physical presence for at least one parent before the child’s birth.
- U.S. citizen father, child born out of wedlock: at least 5 years before the child’s birth. The period does not have to be consecutive, but the total must be at least 5 years, 2 years of which must be after age 14.
- U.S. citizen mother, child born out of wedlock: 12 months continuous physical presence at any time before the child’s birth.
There are a wide range of documents that can be used to prove a U.S. citizen parent’s physical presence in the U.S. before the child’s birth. Some examples are:
- Academic transcripts
- Employment records
- Rental receipts
- Credit Card/banking statements
- S. military records
- Immigration records
- NOTE: U.S. passport stamps may be considered a part of the evidence submitted, but should not be the sole documentary evidence. Driver’s licenses do not constitute evidence of physical presence. Tax records alone are insufficient proof of physical presence.
Proof of the U.S. citizen parent(s)’ legitimate/legal relationship
The U.S. Citizen parent(s)’ must proof their legitimate and legal relationship to the child in one of the following ways:
Parents Legally Married at Child’s Birth
- Parents’ original marriage certificate with notarized English translation (if applicable).
- Divorce certificates for all prior marriages with notarized English translation (if applicable).
- Death certificate with notarized English translation (if applicable).
Parents Not Legally Married at Child’s Birth
If present at the appointment, the U.S. Citizen parent must agree to support the child until 18 years old by signing part B of CRBA application Form DS-2029 (PDF 62KB). If not present at the appointment, the U.S. citizen must provide a signed and notarized Affidavit of Physical Presence or Residence, Parentage and Support DS-5507 (PDF 36KB).