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British Passport for U.S. Citizen

by Kevin
(Boston, MA)

Question: I have a unique question. I am a 36-year-old U.S. citizen born here in the U.S. and still lives here. My mother was originally from England. She was born there and lived there for 23 years and then she came to the U.S. and has lived here every since.

My question is am I allowed to get a British passport as well? The reason I am asking is because I am thinking about moving to England or Australia and I know that having a British passport makes that process easier because of the EU relationship etc. Thoughts?

Answer: According to the UK Border Agency,

"British nationality is defined in law. Whether a person has a claim to British nationality can be determined by applying the definitions and requirements of the British Nationality Act 1981 and related legislation to the facts of their date and place of birth and descent."

It is possible to acquire British citizenship by descent. You can find the list of requirements specific to your situation here:

British Citizenship for a Person Born to a British Mother

Note, the U.S. Government does not encourage dual nationality as a matter of policy because of the problems it may cause. Claims of other countries on dual national U.S. citizens may conflict with U.S. law, and dual nationality may limit U.S. Government efforts to assist citizens abroad. The country where a dual national is located generally has a stronger claim to that person's allegiance.

However, dual nationals owe allegiance to both the United States and the foreign country. They are required to obey the laws of both countries, including tax laws. Either country has the right to enforce its laws, particularly if the person later travels there.

For a complete list of requirements for obtaining a British passport for those born outside the UK on or before January 1, 1983, click the link below.

Overseas British Passport Applications

Comments for British Passport for U.S. Citizen

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Dual British/American citizenship
by: Anonymous

Question: I was born in England in 1951 and left in 1952 on my mother's passport. My mother held British citizenship and my father held Irish citizenship. I became an American citizen with them in 1958. Do I have dual citizenship although I never held my own British passport?

Answer: You may find helpful answers/information regarding British citizenship and dual citizenship on the British government's website.

Child of American DOD Officer born in UK
by: H.D.

Question: I was born in England, and since turning 18 I have desired to apply for citizenship and believe I may qualify under the terms of "the right to abode".

My father was an American civilian Department of Defense Officer at the time of my birth; having both an "U.K. Home Office Componency" stamp and "Leave to Remain" stamp throughout his term of service as well as an U.S. Third Air Force Component Stamp for the several years my family resided in the United Kingdom.

On the GOV.UK website under British Citizenship, the only thing it says about "right to abode" that would be applicable in my particular case is if my father had a British Government stamp in his passport that qualified as documentation proving he had the "right to abode".

The exact meaning of "right to abode" isn’t particularly made clear in my particular situation from my reading of the website, so I am asking for clarification and further guidance as to if I may indeed qualify and apply for citizenship.

Answer: Hello. U.S. passport Service Guide specializes in U.S. passport issuance and U.S. citizen travel. We have limited information on citizenship. We recommend that you direct UK citizenship questions to the British government.

Obtaining BNO
by: Con

Question: I was born in British Hong Kong 1973 and still have the British Dependent Territory Citizen passport. I immigrated to US in 1985 then became US citizen in 1993. Under this circumstances, can I apply for BNO?

Answer: Please contact Her Majesty's Passport Office regarding your concern.

British Citizen Trying to Get US Citizenship
by: Anonymous

Question: Hi, I am a British citizen moving to the U.S. to live with my husband. He is finishing up his Ph.D. and starting a new job. Can I get a US passport too or citizenship?

Answer: You need to go through the naturalization process before you can apply for a U.S. passport. For questions regarding citizenship, it is best that you contact the USCIS.

Naturalized U.S. Citizen in 1948
by: Anonymous

Question: I believe I qualify for British citizenship by descent, with one unknown factor that needs answering. My British mother became a Naturalized US Citizen in 1948. Four years later I was born (my father was a U.S. Citizen by birth). Would my mother have been required (by either the UK or U.S.) to relinquish her British citizenship in order to become a U.S. citizen? The British guidelines seem to indicate in order for me to qualify for British citizenship (passport holder) now, the qualifying parent must have been a British citizen when I was born. Simply put, I need to know if my mother was still legally a British citizen after becoming a naturalize U.S. citizen. Again, I do not know what either the British or U.S. rules were at that time. Thank you so much for any light you can shed on this. I have been looking everywhere for the answer with no luck.

Answer: The best people to answer your questions would the those at Her Majesty's Passport Office.

American dad, British mom
by: Anonymous

Question: My husband was born in England in 1946 to an American serviceman and a British mother. He came over on war bride ship. Is he considered a British citizen and can he get a British passport?

Answer: Please contact Her Majesty's Passport Office regarding your concern.

UK born US citizen
by: Anonymous

Question: I am UK-born of a UK citizen mother. Emigrated to the US and became a naturalized US citizen as a teenager (I am 67 now). Does the UK still consider me a UK citizen? And if not, can and how can I become a UK citizen again? Can I get dual citizenship? Thanks! Rick

Answer: Hello, Rick. Please contact the British Embassy regarding dual citizenship.

US born Citizen seeking dual national British Passport
by: Anonymous

Question: Good morning.

I am a US Citizen born and raised.

I moved to the UK some years ago and married a British Citizen. I have the rights of indefinite residence here in the UK. Our child has Dual Nationality.

Can I apply for a British Passport and also have Dual Nationality? I have lived in the UK for 23+ years.

Thank you for taking the time to answer my query.

Kind regards

Answer: Please contact Her Majesty's Passport Office regarding your concern.

How can I get my British passport?
by: Anonymous

Question: My father was stationed in England. I was born in Bury St. Edmonds. What do I need to do to get a British passport?

Answer: Please contact the Her Majesty's Passport Office for assistance regarding British passports.

Applying for dual nationality in Britain
by: Olivia C.

Question: Hi. I was born in the United States and I am currently under 18. I was wondering how I can apply for dual citizenship in the United Kingdom because I would like to attend a college. I understand it is easier to apply for dual nationality instead of the student visa. Though I am very bewildered by the whole process of applying. What is the most helpful way to obtain information and get an understanding of the application process?

Answer: You need to contact the British government for advice on how to obtain citizenship.

Us military brat born at RAF
by: Anonymous

Question: I was born in the UK on the Royal Air Force Base at Lakenheath to two American parents. I had dual citizenship until I was 21. I was told at that point I had to denounce my British citizenship to remain an American citizen. I want to know if I am able to have my dual citizenship reinstated and if so the procedures.

Answer: Please contact the British Embassy regarding your concern. You may also contact the USCIS about American citizenship.

British passport
by: Tracey

Question: I was born in the UK in 1967 and obtained U.S. citizenship in 2010. My British passport has expired, can I still get a British passport even though I have a U.S. passport? Also my 18-year-old daughter who was born in the US in 1999 would also like to get a British passport? Is this feasible?

Answer: Hi, Tracey. Please contact the Her Majesty's Passport Office for assistance regarding British passports.

Dual Citizenship qualifications
by: Kim Morgan

Question: My father was born and raised in Blackpool, England. As an adult, he served 20 years in the U.S. Air Force. I was born in England and have both a British birth certificate and a U.S. Air Force birth certificate. Since I have dual citizenship because of both my father and my birth in the U.K., does my daughter also have dual citizenship? Can we both get British passports?

Answer: Please contact the British Embassy regarding citizenship.

US/Scottish Citizenship by Descent

Question: My grandfather was born in Scotland and was a veteran of Foreign Wars. He immigrated to the U.S. via Canada & married my grandmother in the U.S. My mom wants to apply for her Scottish Citizenship as do I once she obtains hers. Is that possible to obtain Scottish/UK citizenship via descent?


Answer: Please contact the British Embassy regarding your question.

My minor children are UK/US citizens
by: Vanessa

Question: I was married to a British man for 10 years. We lived in the USA. I am now a divorced single parent to two young children who are British passport holders (they have dual USA/UK citizenship). If I want to raise my kids in the UK, would I be allowed a work visa or a path to British Citizenship?

Answer: Hello, Vanessa. The best people to ask are those at the British Embassy.

UK-born US citizen
by: Kathy L.

Question: My husband was born in the UK to a UK citizen mother. He moved to the U.S. as a child and as a teenager he went through the naturalization process to become a U.S. citizen. This was before 1983. Does the UK still consider him a UK citizen? Thanks!

Answer: Please contact the British Embassy regarding your concern.

Passport for child of British mother
by: Anonymous

Question: I was born in the U.S. post WWII (way before 1983) to a British mother who became a U.S. citizen 3 years later. Father was U.S. citizen. I do not live in the UK. Can I qualify for a British passport?

Answer: Please contact the Her Majesty's Passport Office for assistance regarding British passports.

How to obtain dual citizenship
by: Anonymous

Question: I was born abroad and I became a US citizen several years ago. I failed to retain dual citizenship. I would like to know what is the process of becoming a dual citizen.

Answer: The process of re-claiming citizenship varies from country to country. You need to contact the embassy of your birth country to find out if they recognize dual citizenship and if so, how you can become one.

Obtaining U.K. Passport
by: Daniel

Question: Hey! I am Ukrainian who migrated to the USA before age of 18, received my US citizenship by adoption process also before 18.

I am interested in moving to U.K. for a couple of years and obtaining 2nd citizenship with them since I had to renounce the one with Ukraine.
Is that possible and what would I need to do to do so? Thank you.

Answer: Please contact Her Majesty's Passport Office for inquiries about British passports.

Question re: visa
by: Anne

Question: I am a British citizen with a valid British passport. I am a resident of the US, holding a valid green card. I plan to fly to Japan after visiting England. Will I need a Visa for Japan?

Answer: Please contact the Embassy of Japan to verify travel document requirements for British passport holders.

Adult child born 1971 who has changed his name
by: Aileen Lamond

Question: I was born in Scotland in 1943. I have a son who was adopted by my husband. After my subsequent divorce my son, a medical professional, changed his name to my maiden name in 2000 to honor me. I have used my maiden name since 1968. Can he use my info to apply for a U.K. Passport?

Answer: Please contact Her Majesty's Passport Office for inquiries about British passports.

Holding two passports
by: Fred

Question: I was born in Scotland, emigrated to the U.S. in 1948 and became an American citizen at 18 years of age. However, I hold dual citizenship having never relinquished my British citizenship. I hold an American passport but wish a British one. Can I hold both a British and American passport or to gain the British one would I have to give up my American passport?

Answer: Yes, you can hold both an American and British passports. For information about obtaining a British passport, click here.

British Mother
by: Anonymous

Question: I am an American citizen born 8.1984 to from a British mother - am I able to apply for a British passport? I tried visiting the link regarding having a British mother and am still unsure if I meet the criteria. Thank you!

Answer: Please visit the following web page to check if you are eligible for British citizenship.

by: Anonymous

Question: I am a British citizen residing in the US and have 2 young children born in the US. Their father is a US citizen. Am I able to apply for a British passport for my children in addition to them keeping their US passport too?

Answer: It is possible to possess both an US passport and a passport from another country. Please contact the British Embassy in DC for answers to questions about British citizenship and passports.

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