Reacquiring/maintaining Sri Lankan citizenship (dual citizenship) (2023)

Approval of dual citizenship – Administrative procedure for accepting applications for dual citizenship

Dual citizenship refers toa person whose Sri Lankan citizenship has ceased under section 19, 20 or 21 of the Citizenship Act no. 18 of 1948 or a person whose Sri Lankan citizenship is likely to cease.

The existing legal framework for granting dual citizenship

Dual citizenship is granted in accordance with the provisions of the Law on Citizenship no. 18 from 1948, as amended by Law no. 45 of 1987

  1. Continue-Section 19(2) of the said Act contains provisions relating to a person whose Sri Lankan citizenship has ceased due to acquiring the citizenship of another country and who subsequently wishes to re-acquire the status of a Sri Lankan citizen.

  2. conservation-Article 19 paragraph 3 of the said law contains provisions regarding a person who, wishing to obtain the citizenship of another country, intends to retain the citizenship of Sri Lanka.

Mandatory documents

Applicants are required to presentORIGINALSall relevant documents required when submitting an application.TRANSLATED DOCUMENTS ARE NOT ACCEPTED.

Oba Continue Uconservation

  • Duly fulfilled request(download)

  • Conduct Certificate/Previous Check (formerly Conduct Certificate) obtained from nearest local police (not older than 03 months)

    • Children under the age of 16 are exempt from this obligation

  • Birth certificate of Sri Lanka

  • Marriage certificate (for husband's request)

  • 03 Photos(standard photo size)

  • Declaration form(download) –Parents' statementwhen they are not citizens of a foreign countryand applying for dual citizenshiponly for their children under 21 years of age.

In addition to the above documents, you must attach the following documents:


  • Valid US passport and certificate of naturalization (if applicant is a US citizen)
  • Sri Lankan passport (if available)

  • Sri Lanka National Identity Card (if available)

For conservation

  • US Permanent Resident Card (if the applicant is a US permanent resident)
  • Valid Sri Lankan passport

  • Sri Lanka National Identity Card (if available)

Qualification criteria and required documents for eligible categories

An applicant must meet the requirements and provide sufficient documentary evidence in any of the following categories to qualify for dual citizenship. (Documents related to the acceptable category must be submittedalong with the mandatory documents mentioned above.)

ForCategory – A (age)

  • Criteria-A candidate who is older than 55 years at the time of application.
  • Documents-No additional documents are required.

ForCategory - B (professional/academic)

  • Criteria-A candidate who has the necessary academic or professional qualifications (teaching qualification of at least one year degree or more or professional qualification).
  • Documents-Original academic/professional certificates. (Minimum one-year diploma or higher or other professional qualification.)

ForCategory - C (property / properties)

  • Criteria-The applicant who owns real estate/property inSri Lankaworth Rs. 2.5 million or more. The assessment of the applicant's share must be clearly stated for property and jointly owned property. (Assets/assets must be owned before acquiring foreign citizenship.)
  • Documents-Original documentary proof of the applicant's assets such as; land or other immovable property in Sri Lanka worth Rs. 2.5 million or more. Original documents, valuation report and property report with pedigree for thisnot older than 3 monthsit must be endured.

ForCategory – D (Fixed Deposit of Rs 2.5 crore or more)

  • Criteria-An applicant with a fixed deposit of Rs. 2.5 million or more for a period of 03 years in any of the commercial banks approved by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL). Deposits to financial companies are not acceptable under these circumstances.
  • Documents-Bank confirmation letter stating thatthe deposit is a lien for 3 years with the aim of obtaining dual citizenship.

ForCategory - E (Fixed Deposit of USD 25,000 or more)

  • Criteria-Applicant having fixed deposit of USD 25,000 or more for a period of 03 years under NRFC/RFC/SFIDA accounts, with any commercial bank approved by the Central Bank of Sri Lanka (CBSL) in Sri Lanka Lanka
  • Documents-Bank confirmation letter stating thatthe deposit is a lien for 3 years with the aim of obtaining dual citizenship.

ForCategory - F (Treasury Bond (TB) or Security Investment Account (SIA) worth USD 25,000 for a minimum period of 3 years)

  • Criteria-Applicant who has invested USD 25,000/- for 03 years in Government Bonds (TB) or Security Investment Accounts (SIA)
  • Documents-The certificate of the competent authority confirming the investment will not be revoked before the expiry of the deadline for obtaining dual citizenship.

ForCategory – G (spouse or unmarried children of the applicant up to 22 years of age)

  • Criteria-Applicant's spouse or applicant's unmarried children under 22 years of age. An eligible spouse under this provision is limited to a person whose Sri Lankan citizenship has been terminated under Sections 19, 20 or 21 of the Citizenship Act no. 18 of 1948 or a person whose citizenship is likely to cease.
  • Documents-The following documents must be submitted:

    • Original marriage certificate (for spouse)

    • Original birth certificate (for an unmarried child –born in Sri Lanka)

    • Original consular birth certificate and original citizenship certificate issued under section 5(2) of the Citizenship Act no. 18 from 1948 (for an unmarried child -born outside Sri Lanka) must be submitted.

Special note for applications fromunmarried children(And F categories):

  • Requirements forunmarried childrenmust be submitted before the age of majority21 years and 06 months. If his/her age is more than 22 years at the time of payment, he/she has to apply again under another category. (Category A - F).

  • Requirements forunmarried childrenwho have reached the age of majority21 years and 06 monthswill no longer entertain in this category as of July 1, 2019.

Submission of applications

Every member of the family must have oneprivate application.

Duly completed applications should be submitted directly to the Immigration and Emigration Department in Colombo, Sri Lanka or the Consular Section of this mission.

Submission and download

documents / open to visitors:

From 9:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. from Monday to Friday (except mission holidays)

For telephone consular questions:

Then call between 2:30 p.m. until 5:30 p.m

Mission phone number:

212-986-7040 (ext. 118 or 112)

The postal address is as follows:

Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the United Nations

Attn: Conzular Department

820, 2nd Avenue, 2e verdieping

New York, New York 10017

Furthermore, applications can be submitted directly to the Department of Immigration and Emigration in Sri Lanka. In this case, the application and accompanying documents must be certified by the deputy or assistant controller of the Department of Citizenship. The physical address of the Department of Immigration and Emigration is as follows.

Chief Controller

Department of Immigration and Emigration

Attn: Snr. Deputy Controller (CIT)

"Suhurupaya", Sri Subhuthipura Road


Sri Lanka


  • Upon receipt of a complete application, the Mission will issue an application reference number to each applicant. Calling the number can be used for further inquiries through the mission.

  • Submitting forged documents and making false statements about citizenship is a misdemeanor. Fees are non-refundable in these circumstances.

  • Incomplete applications will be rejected.

  • All original documents must be submitted along with photocopies.

Prescribed rate

  • Application processing fee -$30.00 (upon request)

  • Citizenship allowance
    • The main applicant -2000 USD/=
    • Applicant's spouse -Rs. 57,500.00 kuna
    • Unmarried children up to 22 years old 500 USD/=

Payment methods

Application processing fees must be paid to this mission when you apply through this mission.

Citizenship fees are payable to the Department of Immigration and Emigration (DI&E) in Colombo, upon confirmation by DI&E.

Payments to this mission must be made bycash/money orders/bank drafts.

Money orders/certified checks should be made payable to"Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the United Nations, New York".

Card payment is not accepted.

Processing time

The time frame cannot be specifically stated due to the large number of pending requests. It depends on the processing time of the Department of Immigration and Emigration.

The Department of Immigration and Emigration in Sri Lanka will contact applicants regarding the application process via the email provided in the application. Once the application is approved, WHO will notify applicants to make payments with instructions.

Return of documents

If return of documents by mail is desired, applicants in the United States may select one of the following options and add payment of application fees:

  • Domestic Shipping Fee - Federal Express (FedEx) - $20.00 (within the United States)
  • International shipping fees - Federal Express (FedEx) - applicable country rate

This mission is not responsible for documents lost in the mail.

For questions and additional assistance,

Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the United Nations, New York

Consular Department

Permanent Mission of Sri Lanka to the United Nations

820, 2nd Avenue, 2e verdieping

New York, New York 10017

+1 212 986 - 7040 (Test: 118)

Ministry of Immigration and Emigration, Sri Lanka

Senior Deputy Controller (Department of Citizenship)

Department of Immigration and Emigration

"Suhurupaya", Sri Subhuthipura Road,


Sri Lanka.

+94 11-532 9000 (9475)


Do you have to maintain dual citizenship? ›

Dual citizenship if you are a citizen of another country

Some countries allow people to keep their citizenship after becoming U.S. citizens, while others do not. Contact the other country's embassy or consulate to find out if they recognize dual U.S. citizenship.

How can I retain Sri Lankan citizenship? ›

Dual Citizenship is applicable to;

Retention – Section 19(3) of the said Act makes provisions in respect of person who is having a desire to obtain Citizenship in another country, while intends to retain the Citizenship of Sri Lanka.

Does dual citizenship expire? ›

13. Can dual citizenship expire? Typically, a person's citizenship of a country doesn't “expire” per se but a few countries require naturalized citizens to visit the country within a certain period of time (for example, within three years).

How do you keep dual citizenship? ›

If you are a naturalized citizen, you don't have to give up citizenship from your country of origin. U.S. immigration law does not prohibit dual nationality. The U.S. Supreme Court also ruled that people can “have and exercise rights of nationality in two countries.”

Can a dual citizen lose their citizenship? ›

A U.S. citizen may naturalize in a foreign state without any risk to his or her U.S. citizenship. However, persons who acquire a foreign nationality after age 18 by applying for it may relinquish their U.S. nationality if they wish to do so.

What are two disadvantages of dual citizenship? ›

Drawbacks of being a dual citizen include the potential for double taxation, the long and expensive process for obtaining dual citizenship, and the fact that you become bound by the laws of two nations.

Do I lose Sri Lankan citizenship? ›

Sri Lankan citizens who become citizens of another country automatically have their citizenship revoked unless they first obtain government permission allowing them to retain Sri Lankan citizenship. Otherwise, former Sri Lankans may subsequently apply for citizenship resumption.

How long can you stay in another country without losing citizenship? ›

(Details can be found in Keeping Your Green Card After You Get It.) This is one of the primary motivators for people to apply for naturalized U.S. citizenship. A naturalized citizen can live for as long as they wish in another country, with almost no risk to their U.S. citizenship status.

What are 3 ways to lose citizenship? ›

You may lose your U.S. citizenship in specific cases, including if you:
  • Run for public office in a foreign country (under certain conditions)
  • Enter military service in a foreign country (under certain conditions)
  • Apply for citizenship in a foreign country with the intention of giving up U.S. citizenship.

Can you collect Social Security with dual citizenship? ›

The United States generally considers a person with dual U.S. and foreign citizenship a U.S. citizen for Social Security purposes. This does not apply if you are a U.S. citizen and a citizen of a country the United States has an international social security agreement with. This excludes Canada and Italy.

Can a U.S. citizen hold dual citizenship? ›

Does the United States allow dual citizenship? Yes, the U.S. allows dual citizenship by default. The government does not require naturalized U.S. citizens to give up their citizenship in their country of origin.

Do I need 2 passports if I have dual citizenship? ›

Most U.S. citizens, including dual nationals, must use a U.S. passport to enter and leave the United States. Dual nationals may also be required by the foreign country to use its passport to enter and leave that country. Use of the foreign passport does not endanger U.S. citizenship.

How many dual citizenships can a U.S. citizen have? ›

Certain countries have always had a favored position for dual citizenship. Most notably, US citizens have no restrictions on obtaining multiple citizenship unless the citizenship can cause significant harm to the country.

Can a dual citizen leave the US on a foreign passport? ›

While dual citizens may be able to travel abroad with alternative documentation, all U.S. citizens are required to present a U.S. passport to re-enter the United States.

Can I travel with 2 passports? ›

Can I have a second U.S. Passport? A little-known fact is that Americans are eligible to hold two U.S. passports at the same time, which can be particularly helpful for travelers who frequently travel to places that require visas. "As I work on trying to visit every country, I have to apply for a lot of visas.

How long can a U.S. citizen stay out of the country 2023? ›

Absences of more than 365 consecutive days

You must apply for a re-entry permit (Form I-131) before you leave the United States, or your permanent residence status will be considered abandoned. A re-entry permit enables you to be abroad for up to two years. Apply for a re-entry permit.

Can you avoid taxes with dual citizenship? ›

As it turns out, as long as you are a citizen or resident alien of the United States, you must file U.S. taxes if you meet the filing thresholds. This applies even if you have dual citizenship and pay taxes to another country or don't currently live in the States.

What is the difference between dual citizenship and second citizenship? ›

The main difference between dual and second citizenship is the presence or absence of a special agreement between countries. It also defines the rights and obligations of the holder of two passports.

Which country doesn t allow dual citizenship? ›

Today, most advanced economies allow dual citizenship; notable exceptions which restrict or forbid it are Austria, Japan, the Netherlands, and Singapore.

How long does Sri Lankan dual citizenship take? ›

Your ceremony can be attended by your nominated relative. After the relative your relative has to post your dual citizenship certificate to your overseas residence. Once you receive the Dual citizenship certificate then you can apply for a sri lankan passport. This will take another 3 months to be processed.

What is the citizenship law in Sri Lanka? ›

Grant of Citizenship to Persons of Indian Origin Act No 35 of 2003 was enacted to grant Sri Lankan citizenship to them. The status of citizen of Sri Lanka was conferred on 1,64,000 persons and their natural increase by operation of law with effect from the date of commencement (2003-11-11) of this Act.

Can foreigners inherit property in Sri Lanka? ›

No law prohibits foreigners from inheriting property in Sri Lanka. However the Finance Act No. 11 of 1963 states that where of ownership of any land is transferred to a person who is not a citizen of Sri Lanka, a tax of an amount equivalent to the value of the land is charged.

What happens if I stay more than 6 months outside US with citizenship? ›

U.S. immigration law assumes that a person admitted to the United States as an immigrant will live in the United States permanently. Remaining outside the United States for more than one year may result in a loss of Lawful Permanent Resident status.

Can you go back to your country after citizenship? ›

It is only after an asylee becomes a U.S. citizen that he will be eligible for a U.S. passport. Asylees should also understand that until they obtain U.S. citizenship they cannot travel back to their countries.

Can a country take back citizenship? ›

Citizenship can be lost involuntarily through denaturalization, also known as deprivation or forfeiture. A person might have their citizenship revoked in this way due to: Fraud in the naturalization process, including sham marriages.

Do you have to pay US taxes if you renounce your citizenship? ›

Tax Implications of Renouncing US Citizenship

Once you renounce your US citizenship, you will no longer be subject to US taxation. However, you will have to resolve any outstanding income tax debts first, and you may also have to pay the exit tax.

Is it worth renouncing U.S. citizenship? ›

Aside from reducing the monetary burden of taxation, renouncing will also reduce the filing burden that all US citizens face. You will no longer have to file a US tax return, fill out Form 5471 for foreign companies, or report your foreign bank accounts with the FBAR form.

Can you renounce US citizenship and still live in US? ›

Living permanently in the US would be possible only if you first obtain a green card, which requires going through the same immigration process as everyone else. Other general considerations are as follows: Renunciation of US citizenship is permanent and irrevocable.

How do I get the $16728 Social Security bonus? ›

To acquire the full amount, you need to maximize your working life and begin collecting your check until age 70. Another way to maximize your check is by asking for a raise every two or three years. Moving companies throughout your career is another way to prove your worth, and generate more money.

What state pays the most in Social Security? ›

1. California
  • Total Social Security Received: $9.34 billion.
  • Total Number of Recipients: 6,166,205.
Jun 2, 2023

What is the Social Security 5 year rule? ›

You must have worked and paid Social Security taxes in five of the last 10 years. • If you also get a pension from a job where you didn't pay Social Security taxes (e.g., a civil service or teacher's pension), your Social Security benefit might be reduced.

Can a U.S. citizen be denied entry back into the USA? ›

Citizens: You only have to answer questions establishing your identity and citizenship (in addition to customs-related questions). Refusal to answer other questions may cause delay, but officials may not deny you entry into the U.S. if you have established your identity and citizenship.

Can a U.S. citizen enter the U.S. without a passport by land? ›

Land or Sea Travel: U.S. citizens (including infants and children) entering the United States by land or sea are required to present a valid WHTI-compliant travel document. These include: U.S. Passport or U.S. Passport Card. Enhanced Driver's License.

What is the best country to have dual citizenship? ›

The 5 best countries for dual citizenship
  • New Zealand. New Zealand is a member of the Trans-Tasman agreement that allows freedom of movement to and fro Australia. ...
  • Portugal. You get to enjoy a warm climate, delectable cuisine, and a safe environment. ...
  • Malta. ...
  • Grenada. ...
  • St.
Jan 13, 2022

What is the most powerful passport? ›

No. 1 most powerful passport in the world: Japan

As of 2023, Japanese passport holders can visit 193 of 227 destinations visa-free, which is 85% of the world, according to data from the International Air Transport Association compiled by Henley & Partners.

Can U.S. citizens have triple citizenship? ›

Yes. Some triple citizenship countries are the United States, the United Kingdom, Australia, Malta, Finland, Turkey, and Antigua and Barbuda.

Can you exit a country on one passport and enter on another? ›

Can I Enter a Country With One Passport and Exit With Another? In most cases, travelers should show the same passport that they used to enter the country when they depart. The rules and procedures vary depending on the country. Some states, such as the UK and US, do not stamp passports when an individual leaves.

What is my nationality if I was born in USA? ›

General Requirements for Acquisition of Citizenship at Birth. A person born in the United States who is subject to the jurisdiction of the United States is a U.S. citizen at birth, to include a child born to a member of an Indian, Eskimo, Aleutian, or other aboriginal tribe.

What is my nationality if I am a naturalized citizen? ›

In the United States, people born in the country are citizens. The 14th Amendment, ratified on July 9, 1868, states, “All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.”

Do countries share passport information? ›

A large number of countries share immigration/visa information with each other. Ironically, this means that travelers' data could be traveling far further than the individuals themselves! For example, many EU countries share data with 35 fellow member states.

Can you lose your American citizenship if you live in another country? ›

You may lose your U.S. citizenship in specific cases, including if you: Run for public office in a foreign country (under certain conditions) Enter military service in a foreign country (under certain conditions) Apply for citizenship in a foreign country with the intention of giving up U.S. citizenship.

Can I use 2 different passports for entering and leaving a country? ›

Bottom line. If you are a holder of a U.S. passport and another passport, a U.S. national or dual national, you must use your U.S. passport to travel in and out of the country.

Which passport should I use if I have dual citizenship? ›

Most U.S. citizens, including dual nationals, must use a U.S. passport to enter and leave the United States. Dual nationals may also be required by the foreign country to use its passport to enter and leave that country. Use of the foreign passport does not endanger U.S. citizenship.

What country does the US not allow dual citizenship? ›

Yes, some countries don't allow dual citizenship with America. Among them are China, United Arab Emirates, India, Austria, Japan, and some others. If you want to obtain citizenship of these countries, you need to renounce your American passport.

How long can a U.S. citizen live abroad without losing citizenship? ›

Let's say you apply for naturalization (U.S Citizenship) under INA 316, leave the US on 1st January 2022 and return on 2nd January 2023, you will have stayed outside America for a year breaking continuous residence. For such a case, you must wait five years (up to 3rd January 2027) to reapply for naturalization.

Do dual citizens have to pay taxes in both countries? ›

Being a dual citizen means that a person is considered a citizen/national of two countries at the same time, and is subject to both country's tax laws. Something to remember is that each country has its own laws dictating who qualifies as a citizen.

What happens if you travel with 2 passports? ›

The advantage of having 2 passports is that one passport might grant the holder access to online visas or visa-free entry to destinations that the other does not. For example, a dual citizen of both the US and Cuba will find it easier to visit Brazil with their US passport.


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