Dual Citizenship in Turkey 2023: How Your Naturalization Works with the Planned New Naturalization Law!

25 June, 2024


Current Update on the New Naturalization Act 2024 as of 26.03.2024

The new Naturalization Act 2024 was published today in the Federal Law Gazette, meaning it will come into force on 27.06.2024! This new law makes it possible for Turkish citizens to obtain dual citizenship without any issues. The option obligation will no longer apply, so you won’t have to choose between your Turkish citizenship and German citizenship. The exceptions according to § 12 StAG are no longer necessary! Find out more in our guide about the new Naturalization Act.

With the planned new naturalization law, dual citizenship for Turkish citizens will be easier than ever. Learn all about the current legal situation and how the new law will change the situation for Turkish citizens. Key issues currently causing problems will be removed with the new law. This article clarifies the steps Turkish citizens need to take when applying for naturalization in Germany and the important aspects to consider during the naturalization process.

Significance and Background of Naturalization for Turkish Citizens

The history of Turkish citizens’ integration in Germany spans several decades, creating a deep connection. Understanding this shared history and the significant role Turkish citizens play in Germany helps us grasp why dual citizenship is so important for many people of Turkish origin in Germany.

History of Guest Worker Families

The immigration of Turkish citizens to Germany began in the last century. In the 1960s, many guest workers from Turkey came to Germany, and many stayed, building lives and families in Germany. This began with an agreement between the Federal Republic of Germany and Turkey on the recruitment of guest workers in 1961. According to the Federal Agency for Civic Education, 900,000 people immigrated to Germany from Turkey in the 12 years following 1961. This marked the beginning of the Turkish community becoming the largest foreign group in Germany.

Integration of Turkish Citizens in Germany

Many Turkish citizens have lived in Germany for a long time and are part of German society. Some were born in Germany to parents or grandparents who emigrated from Turkey. Turkish citizens have contributed significantly to Germany’s economy, culture, and society, working in various professions for many years.

One motivation for the current federal government to renew the Naturalization Act is to acknowledge the contributions of Turkish citizens and make it easier for them to become naturalized.

Current Naturalization Procedure for Turkish Citizens

The current naturalization process for Turkish citizens is similar to that for other foreign citizens. Turkish citizens must meet specific conditions to apply for naturalization and become German citizens.

Current Conditions for Becoming a German Citizen as a Turk

Under the current naturalization law, Turkish citizens must have been legally resident in Germany for at least eight years and possess a residence permit that allows them to apply for naturalization. They must also prove they can support themselves and their families, sign a declaration of loyalty, and pass a naturalization test (unless they have a German school-leaving certificate, a German university degree, or a degree in administration or law). A B1 language certificate is also required. The current law requires giving up Turkish citizenship, which many Turkish citizens are reluctant to do.

Dual Citizenship for Children Born in Germany

Since December 2014, children of Turkish nationals born in Germany after January 1, 1990, no longer need to choose between German and Turkish citizenship at age 23. However, for those born before this date, the old regulations apply, and dual citizenship is not possible.

Figures on the Naturalization of Turks in the Past

From 2009 to 2020, Turkey was consistently one of the top countries for naturalized citizens in Germany. For example, in 2012, there were 33,000 naturalizations of Turkish citizens. In 2022, 14,230 Turkish citizens were naturalized, making Turkey the second highest source of new German citizens, following Syria.

Dual Citizenship Turkey: The Naturalization with the Planned New Law

The planned new naturalization law will bring significant changes for Turks and other foreign nationals in Germany, particularly concerning dual citizenship and residence duration requirements.

Planned Changes

The most crucial change in the planned new law is that Turkish citizens will no longer need to renounce their Turkish citizenship to become German. Additionally, the residence duration requirement will be reduced from eight years to five years, and with special integration achievements, naturalization could be possible after just three years.

Federal Government’s Motivation

The federal government aims to ease naturalization for long-term foreign residents who have contributed to Germany. This change is also intended to make Germany more attractive to skilled workers by offering long-term prospects, including faster naturalization.

Impact on Turkish Citizens

Under the new law, Turkish citizens can retain their Turkish citizenship while becoming German citizens. They can also apply for naturalization after five years of residence, or after three years with exceptional integration achievements, such as high language proficiency (C1-C2 level) or voluntary work.

Steps for Naturalization Under the Planned New Law

Conditions for Dual Citizenship

To apply for dual citizenship under the new law, Turkish citizens must provide proof of B1 language proficiency, sign a declaration of loyalty, pass a naturalization test (unless exempted), and show proof of livelihood and legal residence.

Naturalization Process

  1. Collect Required Documents: Gather B1 language certificate, declaration of loyalty, Turkish passport, naturalization test results, proof of livelihood, and residence permit.
  2. Complete and Submit Application: Complete the naturalization application and submit it with all required documents to the naturalization authority.
  3. Application Review: The authority has 12 weeks to process the application. If not processed within this time, a lawsuit for failure of act can be filed.
  4. Naturalization Granting: Upon approval, attend an appointment to receive the naturalization certificate, German passport, and identity card.

Turkey’s Position on Dual Citizenship

Turkey has no issue with dual citizenship. Turkish citizens acquiring foreign citizenship must present status documents, which are then recorded in the civil family register.

Surrender of Turkish Citizenship

Renunciation of Turkish citizenship is allowed under Turkish law, and necessary approvals are granted by the Council of Ministers.

Dual Citizenship for Those Born Before 1990

The new law will enable those born in Germany before January 1, 1990, who previously had to choose between citizenships, to now hold dual citizenship.

Future Outlook for Dual Citizenship Turkey

The new naturalization law will simplify the process for Turkish citizens, especially those born in Germany before January 1, 1990, and those born in Turkey. It is essential to prepare documents and apply early, as long processing times are expected due to high demand.


The issue of dual citizenship in Turkey is complex. Here are the key points:

  • The new law will allow dual citizenship for all foreign nationals applying for naturalization.
  • Turkish citizens will no longer need to choose between citizenships.
  • Naturalization can be applied for after five years of residence, or three years with special integration achievements.
  • Required documents include a B1 language certificate, declaration of loyalty, naturalization test results, proof of residence, and proof of livelihood.
  • Naturalized Turkish citizens will have the same rights and obligations as other Germans.

Jaberi Lawyers: Your Expert Partner

At Jaberi Lawyers, our experts specialize in immigration law and are ready to assist you with the naturalization process. We have the expertise to guide you through every step, ensuring a smooth and successful application. Contact us today to learn how we can help you achieve dual citizenship with ease and confidence.