How to Get German Citizenship for Indians 2024

Are you planning to settle in Germany? But are you unsure of how to get German citizenship as an Indian? Don’t worry; we’re here to guide you through the process! Germany is the dream destination for Indians aiming for higher education, starting a business, or even permanently settling down with a job. However, getting permanent German citizenship for Indian can be tricky.  

You’ll need to meet several requirements, such as passing a German language test, proving financial stability, and living in the country for a certain period.   

Along with these, there is a tedious application process, and many get their applications rejected. It’s because they are unaware of the regulations and nuances of German citizenship for Indians.

Moreover, Germany’s new citizenship laws have significantly changed residency, multiple citizenship, and language skills requirements. So, to become a German citizen, you must be up to date with citizenship regulations and mandatory requirements.   

Are you already feeling too much?   

Save yourself from the hassle of navigating the murky waters of German citizenship rules. We have curated this blog as a guide to understanding German citizenship requirements, laws, and procedures so you are prepared.

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How Indians Can Apply for German Citizenship?   

The German citizenship rules have the following provisions:   

  1. German citizenship by birth.   
  2. German citizenship by naturalization.   
  3. German citizenship by marriage.   
  4. German citizenship by adoption.

Let’s discuss each of them in detail. 

Citizenship by birth does not apply to Indians. But it’s still important to understand the rules for applying for your children’s citizenship in the future.   


Get German citizenship by birth in the following ways:   

Jus Sanguinis (right of blood)   

This is the main principle of German citizenship, which means children can get citizenship through their parents regardless of where they were born. It is applicable when both or one of the parents is a legal German citizen.   


Jus Soli (right of soil)   

German citizenship rules do not give citizenship via the right of soil. But in some exceptional cases, children born on German soil to foreign parents get citizenship. This applies only when one of the parents has legally resided in Germany for the last five years.   


German Citizenship by Naturalization   

Naturalization is the most common and preferred option for Indians to apply for German citizenship.    

You must have lived in Germany for at least five years, understand Basic German Law, and be willing to adapt to the country’s culture and society.   

Another essential requirement is knowledge of the German language. You should be able to write and speak German fluently.  

To verify your language skills, authorities mandate passing the integration test (Einbürgerungstest). This test assesses your German language, society, and legal system knowledge. It is a crucial step in the naturalization process, and passing it demonstrates your commitment to integrating into German society.   

Acquiring B1-level German language skills is a challenge. Where should you start, and how should you refine your German language skills?   

Kochiva’s comprehensive German language courses can help you master the language in a few months. The course takes a step-by-step process, taking candidates from a beginner to an advanced level. Ultimately, it ensures that you grasp the basics of the language and can fluently converse in German.    

Along with these, there are several other requirements (stated in the previous section) that you must fulfill to be a German citizen. 

Read this article: Everything about Jobs in Germany for Indians in 2024


German Citizenship by Marriage   

The German citizenship rules give legal citizenship to people who get married to German or naturalized citizens.    

If you are obtaining German citizenship through marriage, you will have to:   

  • Prove that you have basic knowledge of the German language   
  • Show that you can support your family or that your partner is supporting you.   

This rule is essential for recently married Indians who are naturalized and looking to get citizenship for their partner.   


German Citizenship by Adoption   

You can get German citizenship by legally adopting children. Once the legal formalities of the adoption are complete, the adoptive parents and the child get immediate citizenship. They enjoy the same benefits as any other German citizen.    

Please note that dual citizenship, as of January 27, 2024, is permissible in adoption cases.   

Informative Article: Foreign Language Salary in India | How much one can make?


Eligibility Requirements for Applying German Citizenship for Indian


To become a German citizen as an Indian, you need to adhere to several eligibility criteria.    

Here are some eligibility requirements for Indians looking to apply for German citizenship through naturalization.   


  1. Minimum stay: You must legally stay in Germany for a minimum of 5 years, up from 8 years earlier. The date is calculated from the day you first received your residence permit.
  2. Language proficiency: You must have conversational German language skills. Moreover, you will also need to pass a language test during the application process.
  3. Financial independence: You must be financially strong enough with a stable job or business to support your family without relying on social assistance.
  4. No-criminal record: You should not be involved in criminal activity or ongoing investigations.
  5. Integration into German society: You must be willing to seamlessly integrate with the German culture and be a part of the society.
  6. Knowledge of German laws: One of the German citizenship requirements mandates you to understand the German Basic Law (Grundgesetz). This is to ensure that you become an ideal citizen of the country.


How Long Do Indians Need to Live in Germany to Be Eligible for Citizenship?   

As of January 27, 2024, Germany’s new citizenship rules entail that you must have lived in Germany for five years to apply for citizenship.   

However, there are other circumstances under which you can be eligible for citizenship earlier. The table below explains the minimum stay requirements. 

Pathway Residency Requirement Additional Requirements
Citizenship by Naturalization 5 years Participation in integration courses.
3 years Completion of special integration courses, i.e., you’re considered “particularly well integrated”
Citizenship by Marriage 3 years Marriage to a German citizen (must have been married for a minimum of two years)
Citizenship by Birth/Descent Immediately After familial connection is verified (e.g., German parent or grandparent for descendants of Nazi victims)
Citizenship by Adoption Immediately After completion of the adoption process.


What Is the Application Process for German Citizenship for Indians?   

Here is the step-by-step process to apply for German citizenship.   


1.) Determine Eligibility Criteria for German Citizenship

The first step is to carefully review your eligibility criteria and how you are eligible for citizenship.   

Please note that different models of citizenship have different criteria. So, always ensure that you fulfill all requirements.   


2.) Required Documents to Apply for Citizenship in Germany

Collect all the required documents to apply for citizenship. This may include birth certificates, financial statements, proof of residency, language skill certificates, marriage certificates (if applicable), adoption papers (if applicable), and work experience papers.   


3.) Complete the Application Form for Citizenship in Germany

The application can be obtained from your local immigration office, city council, regional district office, or other local authorities.   

First, review all the requirements and fill out the application. Double-check all the details before applying.   


4.) Need to Take the Citizenship Test 

You will have to take a citizenship test to demonstrate your knowledge of German culture, laws, and society.   

The test consists of 33 multiple-type questions. You must answer 17 questions correctly to pass the test.   


5.) Pay The Application Fee

Depending on your citizenship model, you will have to pay a minimum application fee while submitting the form.    

The application fee for naturalization is EUR 255 for adults and EUR 55 for minors.   


6.) Wait for German Citizenship Certificate

The German citizenship process takes several months to complete. Please wait patiently as the officials review your application.    

You can check the status of your application through the BAMF Hotline.

If your application is approved, you will be notified and invited to the oath ceremony. You will pledge allegiance to Germany and receive your German citizenship certificate there.   


Documents Required For German Citizenship For Indian Nationals

Here is a list of necessary documents you will need to apply for German citizenship.

  • Proof of identity

Your proof of identity is the Indian passport which should be valid for the duration of the application process.

  • German residence permit

You must have a valid German residence permit for the mandatory period of 5 years to be eligible for citizenship.

  • Employment letter or business documents

These are documents that prove your economic integration and contribution to society. From offer letters, and pay slips to investment papers you will have to produce everything to prove that you are financially strong enough to support your family.

  • Tax returns

Also, you will have to attach copies of tax returns filed in India and Germany.

  • Marriage certificate

You will have to produce a legally accepted certificate of marriage.

  • Bank statements

Bank statements are also analyzed by the authorities to check your financial stability and the ability to support yourself or your family.

Note: These are general documents you will need to fill out the application form. Always check for the mandatory documents mentioned in the form before submitting.


What is The Quickest Way to Get German Citizenship?   

The fastest way for Indian nationals to get German citizenship is via employment-based immigration.    

With a work visa, you can settle in the country for a long time, quickly get a residence permit, and prove your financial independence.   

Most importantly, it will speed up your fulfillment of the eligibility criteria.   


Can We Check The Status of a German Citizenship Application Online?   

Unfortunately, there is no official portal for online checking your German citizenship application status.   

However, you can contact the BAMF hotline to track your application status. BAMF, or the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees, is the govt department responsible for processing the citizenship procedure.   


Processing Fee to Apply for German Citizenship as an Indian?

The processing fee to apply for German citizenship as an Indian is €255. There is a reduced fee of €51 for each dependent minor child naturalized along with a parent.


Do German Citizenship Rules Have Provisions for Dual Citizenship?   

As of January 27, 2024, Germany’s new citizenship law rule allows its citizens to have dual or multiple citizenship.    

However, this applies only if your other country permits dual citizenship. In the case of India, we don’t have any provision for dual citizenship. So, this law is not applicable to Indians.    

As an Indian national, you will have to renounce your Indian citizenship to become a German citizen.   

This is a groundbreaking citizenship law alteration introduced this year. Earlier citizens had to renounce their citizenship in other countries to apply for German citizenship.


Does a Child Born in Germany Receive Citizenship by Birth?

A child born in Germany may receive citizenship by birth depending upon the status of his parents.

  • A child born in Germany with one German parent.

The child will receive immediate citizenship by birth if any of his parents is a German citizen by right of descent (jus sanguinis). The child’s citizenship is not affected by the nationality of the other parent.

  • A child born to non-German parents.

A child born to non-German parents can receive citizenship by birth if one of the parents meets any of the following criteria:

  1. The parent has been residing in Germany for at least 5 years.
  2. The parent holds permanent residency rights at the time of the child’s birth.

Children born to non-German parents before January 1st, 2000 cannot get citizenship by birth. 

Important points to note:

a) Children who acquire German citizenship in the above ways will need to choose between German citizenship and their parents between the ages of 18 to 23.

b) The above rule does not apply if the child is born after 27 January 2024. It is because the new rule allows dual citizenship if the other country also provisions for the same.


How Can Kochiva Help You Expedite Your German Citizenship Process?

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Kochiva helps you advance in your pursuit of German citizenship by helping you master the language. With our comprehensive curriculum, we teach you the basics and conversational German language skills through interactive online classes.   

From online lecture sessions with certified experts to gamified learning experiences and in-class activities, you can excel in the language in just a few months.    

Our course can get you the required B1-level language expertise in 4-5 months. Enroll in the German language course today and open doors to getting citizenship on the first attempt.

Another read this article:

What level of German is required to work in Germany?

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