Danish citizenship

Dansk flagg
Photographer
Silje Bergum Kinsten/ norden.org
Here you can read about the rules for becoming a Danish citizen, and about the Danish rules for dual citizenship.

Citizenship by birth

The citizenship that a child receives at birth is determined by the parents’ citizenships and by which Danish legislation on citizenship is in force at the time of birth.

In the case of children born 1 July 2014 or later, the child automatically becomes a Danish citizen if the mother, father or co-mother is a Danish citizen. This applies regardless of where the child was born, and irrespective of whether the parents are married. This also applies to adoptive children under the age of 12.

On the  website of the Ministry of Immigration and Integration, you can read about the rules that apply to Danish citizenship by birth.   Here you can also find the rules that apply to children born before 1 July 2014.

    If you are a Nordic citizen and wish to become a Danish citizen

    As a citizen of a Nordic country, you can become a Danish citizen under two different sets of rules: by declaration or by naturalisation.

    Citizenship by declaration: you are aged between 18 and 23

    If you are a Nordic citizen, you may, under certain conditions, become a Danish citizen by making a declaration to the Ministry of Immigration and Integration.

    If you are aged between 18 and 23, then to become a Danish citizen by declaration, you must:

    • Be resident in Denmark
    • Have no criminal record
    • Not be charged with a criminal offence or sentenced under Part 9 of the Criminal Code, and
    • Be currently resident in Denmark, and have been resident in Denmark for at least ten years, including at least five of the past six years. You can count periods during which you have lived in other Nordic countries in the ten years if they occurred more than five years before you submit the declaration. You can only count the time you have lived in other Nordic countries before you reached the age of 16.

    You can read more on the web pages of the the Ministry of Immigration and Integration on citizenship by declaration.

    Citizenship by declaration: you are over 18 and have not obtained Nordic citizenship by naturalisation

    If you are a Nordic citizen, you may, under certain conditions, become a Danish citizen by making a declaration to the Ministry of Immigration and Integration.

    If you have not acquired citizenship in a Nordic country by naturalisation (i.e. by applying for citizenship), you may become a Danish citizen if you:

    • Are at least 18 years of age
    • Are currently resident in Denmark, and have been resident in Denmark for the past seven years, and
    • Have not during this time been sentenced to imprisonment or other measures equivalent to imprisonment.

    You can read more on the web pages of the the Ministry of Immigration and Integration on citizenship by declaration.

    Citizenship by naturalisation

    If, as a Nordic citizen, you do not meet the conditions for making a declaration of Danish citizenship, you can apply for Danish citizenship by naturalisation. Applications for Danish citizenship are processed by the Ministry of Immigration and Integration. If you meet the conditions for acquiring Danish citizenship, you will be included in a parliamentary bill called the Act of Notification of Naturalisation, which will subsequently be submitted to the Danish Parliament.

    The following conditions apply:

    • You must make a declaration of fidelity and loyalty.
    • You must currently be resident in Denmark, and you must have been resident in Denmark for an uninterrupted period of at least two years.
    • You must not be charged with or have been punished for a criminal offence, as stated in the Circular on Naturalisation.
    • You must not have an overdue debt to the state.
    • You must be self-supporting. This means that in order for your name to be included in the Act of Notification of Naturalisation, you must not have received social security payments under the Active Social Policy Act or the Integration Act during the previous two years, or for a total period of more than four months during the previous five years.
    • You must document your Danish language skills with a certificate from one of several specified tests (Swedish and Norwegian citizens may document knowledge of Danish with a certificate of a passing grade from a Swedish or Norwegian-language primary school).
    • You must document your knowledge of Danish society, culture and history with a certificate from a special citizenship test. Swedish and Norwegian applicants who can present a certificate of a passing grade from a Swedish or Norwegian-language primary school are exempt from this test.  
    • You must take part in a municipal constitution ceremony.

    You can read more about the requirements on the web page of the Ministry of Immigration and Integration, and in Executive Circular Letter no. 9461 of 17 June 2021.   

    If you wish to apply for Danish citizenship, but you are not a citizen of a Nordic country

    If you wish to become a Danish citizen, but you are not a citizen of a Nordic country, you can read about the conditions for becoming a Danish citizen on the website of Ministry of Immigration and Integration.

      Dual citizenship

      Danish citizens can retain their Danish citizenship if they become citizens of other countries by application or declaration.

      Correspondingly, foreign nationals can retain their citizenship if they become citizens of Denmark.

      However, you should note that some countries outside the Nordic region may require you to renounce your citizenship in order to obtain citizenship there.

        If you were born abroad and are a citizen of Denmark and at least one other country.

        If you were born abroad and have never lived in Denmark or resided in Denmark under conditions that indicate cohesion with Denmark, you will lose your Danish citizenship when you turn 22, unless you thereby become stateless.

        If you have not retained your Danish citizenship through domicile or residence, the Ministry Immigration and Integration may, on the basis of an overall specific assessment, grant a dispensation for you to retain your Danish citizenship. However, the Ministry does not have the option of granting a dispensation for you to retain your Danish citizenship if you apply for it after you have reached the age of 22.

        The Ministry of Immigration and Integration therefore recommends that you apply to retain your Danish citizenship before the age of 22.

        You can read the further conditions and see how to apply at the website of the Ministry of Immigration and Integration.

        Reacquisition of Danish citizenship

        If you have previously been a Danish citizen, you can, under certain conditions, reacquire your Danish citizenship. As a general rule, you must meet certain residence conditions. Special rules apply if you have been a citizen of Finland, Iceland, Norway or Sweden since you lost your Danish citizenship. You can read about the possibilities of reacquiring your Danish citizenship if you meet the residence conditions on the website of the Ministry of Immigration and Integration.

        If you do not meet the residence requirements, you may still be able to reacquire your Danish citizenship. This requires that you have lost your Danish citizenship in connection with becoming a citizen of another country, and that you have not been sentenced to an unconditional prison term since losing your Danish citizenship. This is a transitional arrangement that will apply from 1 July 2021 to 30 June 2026. You can read more about the conditions in the transitional arrangement on the website of the Ministry of Immigration and Integration. 

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