Recently, the Brazilian Constitution underwent an important change that aims to protect those who wish to have multiple nationalities voluntarily, either through the naturalization process – after living for a certain period in a given country – or through other derivative forms, such as marriage. This makes it easier for Brazilian citizens to obtain Portuguese nationality. Let’s see how.
According to the news covering this change in the law, “the loss of Brazilian nationality is now restricted to two situations: when the citizen expressly requests renunciation – as long as this does not make him / her stateless, i.e. without citizenship recognized by any other country – or in cases of a court decision related to fraud in the naturalization process or an attack on the Constitutional order and the Democratic State.”
Although it rarely happened, many Brazilian citizens were afraid to start the process of acquiring Portuguese nationality through marriage, for fear of losing their nationality of origin.
This increased especially after the case of Cláudia Hoerig, one of those rare exceptions, accused of murder in the United States, who fled to Brazil. This case raised concerns because she was denied her Brazilian nationality to be extradited to the United States.
Portuguese nationality for Brazilian citizens
Although Brazilian citizens are one of the groups that most often obtain Portuguese nationality – either because they are of Portuguese descent or because of naturalization due to their length of residence in Portugal, few have applied for Portuguese nationality by marriage in recent years.
This statement is based on a proportional perspective. In fact, according to SEF’s 2022 report, Brazilian nationality leads applications for nationality by marriage in Portugal, however, we believe that these numbers could have been higher in previous years given the number of conjuges who have obtained Portuguese nationality.
We believe that the numbers will certainly increase in the future. This is due to the recent guarantee that the loss of Brazilian nationality will only occur in specific circumstances, eliminating the generic risk previously perceived.
Due to the fear of losing their nationality of origin, which previously influenced many spouses to opt only for the application for residence by family reunification, the truth is that they are of different statuses. Portuguese citizenship makes the life of the citizen, especially the one who wishes to live or invest in Portugal, much more favorable and simplified than a Residence Permit.
If you would like further clarification on this subject, please do not hesitate to contact us. We’ll be happy to help you every step of the way.