Maltese citizenship is a valuable asset, opening doors to the entire Schengen Area, as well as travel to over 165 countries, including Canada and the USA, without the need for a visa. The Maltese Citizenship Act sets out all the relevant provisions for becoming a citizen of Malta, and there are a number of ways that an applicant might achieve this status.
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Citizenship by registration
Those eligible to apply for citizenship under this proviso will need to satisfy one of three scenarios:
1. Individuals born abroad to Maltese parents who are returned migrants.
2. Individuals born in Malta to at least one parent who is a citizen of Malta.
2. Individuals born to non-Maltese parents, one or both of which subsequently acquired Maltese citizenship.
Citizenship by Descent
Foreign nationals can acquire citizenship if they can prove Maltese descent. Those who qualify must be direct descendants, second or subsequent generation. You must also have been born abroad of an ascendant who was born in Malta, of a parent who was also born in Malta. To apply you’ll need to submit your birth certificate, as well the birth and marriage certificates of your Maltese ascendants.
Citizenship through marriage
Spouses of citizens of Malta can acquire Maltese citizenship provided they satisfy the relative conditions. Primarily, they’ll need to be married to a Maltese citizen for at least 5 years.
Citizenship by naturalisation
It’s important to note that acquiring citizenship in this way is entirely discretionary. Meeting the requirements will only grant the right to apply, and not a right to citizenship. A person is eligible to apply if he has resided in Malta for a period of five years prior to the application. You can also become a naturalized citizen of Malta for exceptional services by direct investment.
Re-acquisition of Maltese citizenship
If you’re a former citizen of Malta who lost citizenship due to various factors, then you could be eligible to have your citizenship reinstated. The Maltese legal system provides the mechanisms necessary to set the process in motion.
How AE can help
AE has a dedicated Residency and Immigration department that’s run by trained specialists. Our fluent understanding of Maltese citizenship regulation, coupled with our experience across a colourful portfolio means that we’re fully equipped to handle any scenario. To further support our international client base, the AE team is on hand to handle enquiries in multiple languages, including Russian. Reach out and explain your situation, so we can advise you on the best way to move forward.