If you are German according to these provisions, you must declare, upon reaching 21 years of age, whether you want to keep the German or the foreign citizenship (so-called ‘opting procedure’, Section 29 of the Nationality Act), unless
You are exempt from the opting procedure if you have exclusively the nationality of another EU country or Switzerland in addition to the German one.
In case you do not meet the requirements stated above, the competent nationality authority will contact you after you have reached the age of 21 to fully inform you about the opting procedure, your rights and obligations as well as further steps to take. In the meantime, you do not need to do anything.
The Federal Office of Administration is the competent authority with respect to the opting procedure for Germans living abroad. If we are unable to contact you, this letter will be publicly served to you. If you fail to declare within two years which citizenship you want to keep, you will automatically lose your German nationality. Therefore, it is important that you notify us of your address or any change of address.
You can request the competent nationality authority already before your 21st birthday to establish that you do not have to decide for one citizenship anymore.
People living abroad are asked to use the request form of the Federal Office of Administration. Please see the appropriate fact sheet for more details on the procedure and the required documents.
Please note that the whole application procedure must be conducted in German.