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Who is entitled to apply for citizenship in Greece?

Despite the plethora of information available on the Internet, it is important to know that, according to Greek legislation regarding the acquisition of Greek citizenship, the fact that someone makes an investment, buys a property or starts a business does not entitle them to Greek citizenship. Moreover, the mere fact of the birth of a child to a foreign citizen in Greek territory also does not in itself entitle that child to acquire Greek citizenship. All the existing possibilities for foreign citizens to acquire Greek citizenship will be listed below.

Origin (repatriation)

If you have Greek roots, you can apply for Greek citizenship. To do this, you must provide documents proving your Greek origin: birth, baptism or marriage certificates of Greek relatives, as well as copies of military or municipal registers.

Birth, acknowledgement of paternity or adoption

A child acquires Greek citizenship from the moment of birth if, at the time of birth, both or one of his/her parents have Greek citizenship. A foreign national born out of wedlock is entitled to Greek nationality upon recognition of paternity or adoption by a Greek citizen, provided that he or she is a minor at the time of the recognition or adoption.



Naturalisation is a legal procedure for acquiring Greek citizenship based on the voluntary wish of the applicant, subject to the fulfilment of certain conditions, one of which is long-term legal residence in the country. The length of time you must legally reside in the country depends directly on the category of your residence permit. It can be 3 years, 7 years or even 12 years. In addition, the necessary requirements to apply for Greek citizenship include: sufficient knowledge of the Greek language, knowledge of the history and geography of Greece, Greek culture and the customs of the Greek people, integration into the economic and social life of the country and a clean criminal record.


The child of foreign citizens is given the right to acquire Greek citizenship at birth in the territory of the country, provided that he/she attends the first grade of a Greek primary school or a school following a compulsory Greek education programme. In addition, a prerequisite is that at least one of the parents must have resided continuously and legally in the territory of the Greek State for at least five years prior to the child's birth.

Education: Successful completion of six years of primary education and three years of general secondary education in Greece or, alternatively, six years of general secondary education in Greece.

An alien minor legally residing in Greece may apply for Greek citizenship on the basis of his/her education in a Greek school or in a school following the compulsory Greek educational programme, provided that he/she has successfully completed primary and secondary general education in Greece. Attendance at kindergarten is not taken into account.


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