DUAL CITIZENSHIP – www.identitymalta.com

When Malta became an Independent State on 21st September 1964 it was decided that Maltese citizens should possess only the citizenship of Malta. Those adults who then possessed another citizenship had to renounce it before the 21 September 1967. Citizens of Malta who acquired another citizenship by a voluntary act lost their Maltese citizenship automatically. Minors who possessed another or other citizenships had to decide which citizenship to retain between their 18th and 19th birthday and those who failed to renounce their foreign citizenship, ceased to be citizens of Malta automatically on their 19th birthday. Dual citizenship was introduced in Maltese citizenship legislation with effect from 1st August 1989. This, however, was limited to Maltese emigrants and the persons concerned had to be born in Malta, emigrated to another country of which they became citizens and spent at least six years emigrated in that country.  Important changes to the said legislation were, however, made in the year 2000. Dual or multiple citizenship has now become the rule rather than the exception it was under the 1989 legislation. A citizen of Malta, as from 10th February 2000, can acquire and retain a foreign citizenship (or citizenships) together with his/her Maltese citizenship.

Am I entitled to hold dual citizenship?   You qualify to hold dual citizenship:

  1. A) If you are an adult citizen of Malta and you acquired a foreign citizenship on or after 10th February 2000. You may retain such citizenship together with your Maltese citizenship.
  2. B) If you were a minor on 10th February 2000 or if you had then attained your 18th birthday but had not yet reached your 19th birthday and you possessed another citizenship apart from your Maltese citizenship. You may now hold both citizenships indefinitely.
  3. C) If you became a citizen of Malta on 21st September 1964 or (subsequent to that date) at birth, you lost such citizenship, and you have resided abroad for an aggregate period of at least six years, then in accordance with the year 2000 changes to the citizenship legislation, you are deemed never to have ceased to be a citizen of Malta, that is, you qualify to hold dual citizenship automatically.

If I do not qualify automatically for dual citizenship can I re-acquire Maltese Citizenship and retain it together with any foreign citizenship?

Yes you can be registered as a citizen of Malta if you became a citizen of Malta on 21st September 1964 or at birth but subsequently lost such citizenship and you do not qualify for the automatic reacquisition of Maltese citizenship as you did not spend six years abroad or because you were previously a citizen of Malta by Registration or by Naturalization (vide leaflet on ‘Acquisition of Maltese citizenship by Registration’).

If I were to acquire Maltese citizenship by registration or by naturalization, can I retain it together with my foreign citizenship?

If you are entitled to be registered as a citizen of Malta or if you were to be granted a certificate of naturalization as a citizen of Malta (vide leaflet on ‘Acquisition of Maltese citizenship by Naturalization) then, in view of the year 2000 amendments to the Maltese citizenship legislation, it is possible for you to hold your newlyacquired Maltese citizenship together with your foreign citizenship.

If I already qualified for dual citizenship under the 1989 legislation do I need to take any action under the year 2000 legislation?

If the Department for Citizenship and Expatriate Affairs has informed you in writing that you qualified to hold dual citizenship under the provisions that were in force from 1st August 1989 to 9th February 2000, you do not need to take any further action.

What documents are required in order that the department may confirm in writing that I qualify automatically to hold dual citizenship?

If you qualify automatically to hold dual citizenship (item (C) above) you are required to produce the following documents:


  1. Birth certificate;
  2. Father’s birth certificate;
  3. Parents’ marriage certificate;
  4. A certificate showing the date of acquisition of the citizenship you presently hold, if such citizenship was acquired by Registration or by Naturalization;
  5. Your present passport: Maltese and/or non-Maltese;
  6. Documentary evidence to prove that you have resided abroad for an aggregate period of at least six years. This should primarily consist of your passport or passports for the period/s concerned.

N.B.: If you are a married woman or a widow, a copy of your marriage certificate will be required. If your husband is/was born in Malta or a former Maltese citizen, his birth certificate, his father’s birth certificate and his parents’ marriage certificate should also be produced.

If your previous passports have been lost or destroyed, you may produce one of the following documents instead:

  • A residence certificate normally issued by the Immigration Authorities of the country concerned. Such certificates have been issued in Australia, Canada and Italy;
  • A statement showing your annual earnings over a number of years. For example, the Canada Pension Plan Contributor statement or the Social Security Earnings statement issued by the United States authorities;
  • A letter from your previous or present employer/s giving your employment history. This should include the date of engagement and the date of termination of employment;
  • A confirmation of your annual contributions paid under the National Insurance Scheme of your adoptive country. For example, the statements issued in the United Kingdom by Contributions Agencies;
  • Confirmation from the authorities of any school or college that you have attended. This applies mainly if you acquired the citizenship of your adoptive country during your minority;
  • Any other document acceptable to our Department which proves that you have resided outside Malta for an aggregate period of at least six years.

Enquiry Forms – Persons making enquiries about dual citizenship should submit Enquiry Form A (CEA\16) for those born prior to 21 September 1964 or Enquiry Form B (CEA\17) for those born after that date. https://identitymalta.com/dualmultiple-citizenship/

Points to be noted:

  • In certain cases, additional documents to the ones indicated may be required;
  • As from 16 April 2010, the Department is no longer requesting civil status certificates issued by the Public Registry of Malta in connection with a demand for the provision of a service by the Department. This Department shall obtain the necessary certificates on behalf of the enquirer/applicant.
  • It is, however, the responsibility of the enquirer/applicant to furnish this Department with the correct information to enable it to acquire the required certificates. In the case of a marriage certificate, if this is already available, although one is not obliged to furnish it, it would facilitate matters, if such certificate is produced in order that a photocopy thereof may be made by the Department. In this regard enquirer / applicant is kindly requested to complete  Form B, as applicable.
  • Birth/Marriage certificates issued by foreign Authorities shall be provided by the applicant as well as those issued by the local Ecclesiastical Authorities when records regarding the required certificates are not available at the Public Registry.

Your attention is finally drawn to the fact that it would be advisable for you to verify whether under the citizenship laws of your country you might lose your current citizenship if you were to acquire another citizenship by a voluntary act.