General conditions for naturalisation
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The granting of Austrian citizenship always requires that the general conditions for naturalisation be met and an application for naturalisation be submitted. Only then is it possible for citizenship to be granted on the basis of a legal entitlement or on the basis of discretionary power.
The other conditions for granting citizenship are determined by whether the citizenship is granted on the basis of a legal entitlement or whether the decision is at the discretion of the competent authority.
- at least 10 years of lawful and uninterrupted residence in Austria, including at least 5 years under an residence permit; derogations from this condition exist in cases where citizenship is granted on the basis of a legal entitlement (to persons who are in possession of EU/EEA citizenship, amongst other persons);
- irreproachable integrity;
- no criminal convictions handed down by a court;
- no pending criminal proceedings (either domestic or foreign);
- no serious administrative offences of particular gravity;
- the person has sufficient resources to support himself/herself;
- proof that the person has stable and regular resources of their own from employment, income, statutory maintenance claims or insurance benefits for an average of 36 months during the last 6 years prior to the date of application, whereby the last 6 months of the period claimed must be immediately prior to the date of application;
- knowledge of German and basic knowledge of the democratic system and the fundamental principles derived from it and of the history of Austria and the province concerned;
- proof by means of a written test, unless one of the exceptions apply (e.g. German mother tongue, minority, school attendance achieving a pass mark in German);
- positive attitude towards the Republic of Austria and guarantee that the person does not pose a threat to public peace, order and security;
- no existing ban on residence and no pending removal procedure;
- no return decision;
- no return decision by another EU/EEA State or Switzerland;
- no expulsion within the last 18 months;
- no close relationship with an extremist or terrorist group;
- the person has, in principle, lost his or her previous nationality;
- The granting of citizenship must not
- significantly affect the international relations of the Republic of Austria or
- harm the interests of the Republic of Austria.
The citizenship department of the Regional Government officeGerman text concerned
You can make the application informally or use an application form. Application forms can be obtained from the competent authority.
The documents actually required in each case depend on the details of your personal situation. Please contact your local citizenship department to find out more about this.
The original copy of foreign-language documents must be submitted together with a translation certified in Austria.
Whether or not certified translations from other countries will be recognised depends on the relevant procedural requirements. An apostille may be required for recognition of the documents, for example.
If an original document in a foreign language must be submitted jointly with a certified translation, as a general rule the translation may only be carried out by sworn and legally certified translators. Translators from other EU/EEA Member States may also be registered on the list of sworn and legally certified translators in Austria.
Further information on the obligation to undergo a medical examination for military service and military service can also be found at oesterreich.gv.at.
- Mein Österreich – Preparation for Citizenship (→ BMEIA)German text
- Naturalisation and Citizenship (→ City of Vienna)German text
- List of expert witnesses and court interpreters (→ BMJ)German text
Responsible for the content: Federal Ministry of the Interior