Citizenship

Section (1) A person may, in accordance with the provisions of this Chapter, become a citizen of Jamaica by -

   1. birth;
   2. descent; or
   3. registration as a citizen of Jamaica based on marriage to a citizen of Jamaica.

Section (2) Parliament may make provision for the acquisition of citizenship of Jamaica by persons who do not become citizens of Jamaica by virtue of the provisions of this Chapter.

Section (3) Subsection (1) shall not affect the right of any person who, before the 26th day of March, 1999, was entitled to Jamaican citizenship by virtue of any provision of the Constitution in force before that date.

Section 3A.-(1) A person-

  1. who was born outside Jamaica before the sixth day of August 1962;
  2. who was not before the 1st day of March 1993, entitled to Jamaican citizenship by virtue of any provisions of this Constitution in force before that date; and
  3. whose father or mother, on the sixth day of August 1962, became or would but for his or her death have become a citizen of Jamaica in accordance with subsection (1) of section 3, shall become a citizen of Jamaica on the 1st day of March 1993.
(2) Subsection (1) shall not affect the rights of any person who, before the 1st day of March 1993, was entitled to Jamaican citizenship by virtue of any provision of this Constitution which was in force before that date.

Section 3B.-(1) Every person born in Jamaica shall become a citizen of Jamaica -
  1. on the sixth day of August, 1962, in the case of a person born before that date;
  2. on the date of his birth, in the case of a person born on or after the sixth day of August, 1962.
(2) A person shall be deemed to be born in Jamaica -

  1. 1. if he is born on a ship or aircraft registered in Jamaica or belonging to the Government; or
  2. 2. if at the time of his birth his mother :-
  • is a citizen of Jamaica residing in a country other than Jamaica by reason of her employment in the diplomatic service of Jamaica; or
  • whether or not a citizen of Jamaica, is residing in a country other than Jamaica by reason of her being married to a citizen of Jamaica who is residing in that country by reason of his employment in the diplomatic service of Jamaica.
(3) A person shall not become a citizen of Jamaica by virtue of this section if at the time of his birth -
  1. his father or mother possesses such immunity from suit and legal process as is accorded to an envoy of a foreign sovereign power accredited to Her Majesty in right of her government in Jamaica and neither of his parents is a citizen of Jamaica;
  2. his father or mother is an enemy alien and the birth occurs in a place then under occupation by the enemy.

Section 3C. Every person born outside Jamaica shall become a citizen of Jamaica -

   1. on the sixth day of August, 1962, in the case of a person born before that date; or
   2. on the date of his birth, in the case of a person born on or after the sixth day of August, 1962,

if, at that date, his father or mother is a citizen of Jamaica by birth, descent or registration by virtue of marriage to a citizen of Jamaica.

Section 4 (1) Any man or woman who, on the fifth day of August 1962, is or had been married to a person -
  1. who becomes a citizen of Jamaica by virtue of section 3 of this Constitution; or
  2. who, having died before the sixth day of August 1962 would but for that person's death, have become a citizen of Jamaica by virtue of that section,
shall be entitled, upon making application in such manner as may be prescribed and, if he or she is a British protected person or an alien, upon taking the oath of allegiance, to be registered as a citizen of Jamaica.

(2) Any person who, on the fifth day of August 1962, is a citizen of the United Kingdom and Colonies-
  1. having become such a citizen under the British Nationality Act, 1948, by virtue of his having been naturalised in the former Colony of Jamaica as a British subject, before that Act came into force; or
  2. having become such a citizen by virtue of his having been naturalised or registered in the former Colony of Jamaica under that Act,
shall be entitled, upon making application before the sixth day of August 1964, in such manner as may be prescribed, to be registered as a citizen of Jamaica:
Provided that a person who has not attained the age of twenty-one years (other than a woman who is or has been married) may not make an application under this subsection himself but an application may be made on his behalf by his parent or guardian.

(3) Any man or woman who on the fifth day of August 1962 is or has been married to a person who subsequently becomes a citizen of Jamaica by registration under subsection (2) of this section shall be entitled, upon making application in such manner as may be prescribed and, if he or she is a British protected person or an alien, upon taking the oath of allegiance to be registered as a citizen of Jamaica.

Section 5 [Repealed by Act 18/1999.]

Section 6 [Repealed by Act 18/1999.]

Section 7 (1) Any man or woman who, after the fifth day of August 1962, marries a person who is or becomes a citizen of Jamaica shall, subject to subsection (2), be entitled, upon making application in such manner as may be prescribed and, if he or she is a British protected person or an alien, upon taking the oath of allegiance, to be registered as a citizen of Jamaica.

(2) A person may be denied registration under this section if -
1. thre is satisfactory evidence that -
  1. the marriage was entered into primarily for the purpose of enabling that person to acquire Jamaican citizenship; or
  2. the parties to the marriage have no intention to live permanently with each other as spouses, after the marriage;
2. the person has been convicted in any country of a criminal offence specified in any law which makes provision for such denial on the ground of such conviction.

3. Subsection (2) shall not affect the right of any person who, before the 26th day of March, 1999, was entitled to apply for Jamaican citizenship by virtue of any provision of this Constitution in force before that date.

Section 8 (1) No person who is a citizen of Jamaica by virtue of section 3 (1) (a), (b) or (c) shall be deprived of his citizenship of Jamaica.

(2) A person who is a citizen of Jamaica other than by virtue of 3 (1), (a), (b) or (c), shall not be deprived of his citizenship except by or under the provisions of a law -
  1. specifying the grounds on which such deprivation may take place and the procedure for such deprivation; and
  2. securing to any person affected thereby a right of access to the Supreme Court for the purpose of reviewing the decision to deprive him of his right to such citizenship.
Section 9 (1) Every person who under this Constitution or any Act of Parliament is a citizen of Jamaica or under any enactment for the time being in force in any country to which this section applies is a citizen of that country shall, by virtue of that citizenship, have the status of a Commonwealth citizen.

(2) Every person who is a British subject without citizenship under the British Nationality Act, 1948, or who continues to be a British subject under section 2 of that Act shall by virtue of that status have the status of a Commonwealth citizen.

(3) Save as may be otherwise provided by Parliament, the countries to which this section applies are the United Kingdom and Colonies, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, India, Pakistan, Ceylon, Ghana, the Federation of Malaya, the Federation of Nigeria, the Republic of Cyprus, Sierra Leone, Tanganyika, the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland and the State of Singapore.

Section 10 A Commonwealth citizen who is not a citizen of Jamaica, or a citizen of the Republic of Ireland who is not a citizen of Jamaica, shall not be guilty of an offence against any law in force in Jamaica by reason of anything done or omitted in any part of the Commonwealth other than Jamaica or in the Republic of Ireland or in any foreign country unless-

1. the act or omission would be an offence if he were an alien; and

2. in the case of an act or omission in any part of the Commonwealth or in the Republic of Ireland, it would be an offence if the country in which the act was done or the omission made were a foreign country.

Section 11 Parliament may make provision-

1. [Deleted by Act 18/1999.]

2. prescribing the grounds on which and the procedure whereby a person may be deprived of his citizenship of Jamaica;

3. for the renunciation by any person of his citizenship of Jamaica.

Section 12 (1) In this Chapter-
  1. "alien" means a person who is not a Commonwealth citizen, a British protected person or a citizen of the Republic of Ireland;
  2. "British protected person" means a person who is a British protected person for the purposes of the British Nationality Act, 1948;
  3. "foreign country" means a country (other than the Republic of Ireland) that is not part of the Commonwealth;
  4. "prescribed" means prescribed by or under any Act of Parliament.
(2) [Deleted by Act 6 of 1993.]

(3) For the purposes of this Chapter, a person born aboard a registered ship or aircraft, or aboard an unregistered ship or aircraft of the government of any country, shall be deemed to have been born in the place in which the ship or aircraft was registered or, as the case may be, in that country.

(4) Any reference in this Chapter to the national status of the parent of a person at the time of that person's birth shall, in relation to a person born after the death of his parent, be construed as a reference to the national status of the parent at the time of that parent's death; and where that death occurred before the fifth day of August, 1962, the national status that the parent would have had if he or she had died on the sixth day of August, 1962, shall be deemed to be his or her national status at the time of death.