CITIZENSHIP LAW - BRAZIL
The citizenship of Brazil may be obtained in one of the two ways:
- by birth:
- by naturalization
BRAZIL CITIZENSHIP BY BIRTH
The nationality of Brazil may be obtained by Birth by persons
- those born in the Federative Republic of Brazil, even if of foreign parents, provided that they are not in the service of their country;
- those born abroad, of a Brazilian father or a Brazilian mother, provided that either of them is serving the Federative Republic of Brazil;
those born abroad, of a Brazilian father or a Brazilian mother, provided that they are registered with a proper Brazilian authority, or those who come to live in Brazil before coming of age and, having come of age, opt for Brazilian nationality at any time;
- Those who, as set forth by law that is (Law no. 6815, of August 9, 1980, as amended by Law no. 6964, of December 9, 1981, and Decree 86715, of December 10, 1981), acquire Brazilian nationality, and, for persons originating from Portuguese speaking countries, the only requirement being residence for one uninterrupted year and moral integrity;
- Foreigners of any nationality, resident in the Federative Republic of Brazil for over Fifteen years uninterruptedly and without any criminal conviction, provided that they apply for Brazilian nationality.
- The rights inherent to born Brazilians shall be attributed to Portuguese citizens permanently resident in Brazil if Brazilians are afforded reciprocal treatment, except in the events set forth in the Constitution.
The law may not establish any distinction between born and naturalized Brazilians, except in the events set forth in this Constitution.
BRAZIL NATURALIZATION PROCEDURE
An application for Brazilian citizenship through naturalization can only be lodged in Brazil. The application standards are set forth by Portaria (Ordnance) of the Minister of Justice No. 703 of June 13th, 1995, published by Diário Oficial Da União (the brazilian federal government official daily) of June 14th, 1995.
PRE REQUISTES AS TO NATURALIZATION
Applicants must meet the following conditions:
- Legal capacity, according to Brazilian law.
- Registration as a permanent resident of Brazil.
- Proof of uninterrupted residence in Brazil for at least four years immediately prior to lodging the application.
- Ability to read and write Portuguese in a manner commensurate with his or her possibilities.
- Exercise of a profession or own sufficient property for support of self and family. This condition is met if the applicant:
- receives a pension for work done in Brazil, or
- is a student up to the age of 25, or
- is married to a Brazilian citizen, or
- shows proof of support by a parent, relative or descendant who has enough resources to meet the legal requirement's for the applicant's support.
- Proof of good behavior.
- Absence of any denunciation, indictment or sentence in Brazil for a crime punishable, in principle, by more than one year in prison.
- No income tax debits in Brazil.
Good health. (No proof of good health is required from a foreigner who has continuously resided in Brazil for more than two years immediately prior to the date the application is lodged.)
ABSENCE FROM BRAZIL AND PERIOD OF INTERRUPTION
The required four year period of residence is not considered interrupted by trips abroad, provided that the motive for such trip is considered relevant by the Minister of Justice and that the total sum of the periods of absence from Brazil does not exceed eighteen months.
REDUCED PERIOD OF RESIDENCE
The required four-year period of residence may be shortened to, if the applicant:
- One year: has a Brazilian child or is married to a Brazilian.
- One year: has a Brazilian parent;
- One year: has rendered or is in a position to render relevant services to Brazil, at the discretion of the Minister of Justice.
- Two years: is eligible because of professional, scientific or artistic ability.
- Three years: owns property of expressive value in Brazil; is an industrialist, owning expressive resources; or owns expressive paid-in shares in any corporation specially and permanently active in industry or agriculture.