Renunciation of U.S. Citizenship
Loss of Nationality
There are two kinds of Loss of Nationality cases: renunciation and relinquishment. U.S. citizens considering renouncing or relinquishing their U.S. nationality should carefully review and understand the consequences and ramifications of doing so.
Once loss of U.S. nationality occurs, expatriates will no longer receive U.S. consular support abroad and will be subject to current visa requirements for future travel to the United States. Additionally, the act of renouncing or relinquishing U.S. citizenship will not allow persons to avoid repayment of financial obligations previously incurred in the United States or incurred as United States citizens abroad, i.e. U.S. taxes.
Under 8 U.S.C. 1182, “any alien who is a former citizen of the United States who officially renounces United States citizenship and who is determined by the Attorney General to have renounced United States citizenship for the purpose of avoiding taxation” is inadmissible to the United States, that is ineligible for entry to the United States.
The U.S. Internal Revenue Service provides tax forms and instructions for expatriates’ filing purposes.
- IRS Form 8854 - Initial and Annual Expatriation Information Statement (PDF)
- Instructions for IRS Form 8854
Determination of renunciation or relinquishment by U.S. citizen
U.S. citizens who, after carefully reviewing the aforementioned website links, decide to give up U.S. nationality are required to have two mandatory interviews with a U.S. diplomatic or consular officer. During the initial interview, individuals should provide:
- Original evidence of U.S. nationality (e.g. U.S. Naturalization Certificate, Consular Report of Birth of an American Citizen Abroad, or the most recently issued U.S. passport regardless of the passport’s expiration date);
- Original evidence of foreign nationality (e.g. foreign passport, certificate of naturalization of the foreign state, foreign birth certificate)
The diplomatic or consular officer will provide information and relevant forms to citizens and discuss the ramifications and consequences of giving up U.S. nationality. U.S. citizenship documents will be retained until approval or denial of loss of nationality is received from the U.S. Department of State. Foreign citizenship documents will be returned after the initial interview.
A time to reflect is afforded to all citizens after the first interview. This time allows citizens to carefully review and ponder the information provided during the interview and decide whether to continue pursuing loss of nationality. A second interview with a diplomatic or consular officer must be attended by all who choose to continue the renunciation process.
At the second interview, the diplomatic or consular officer will administer the oaths and witness citizens’ signatures to the pertinent forms.
Final determination of Loss of Nationality
Following the second interview, cases are forwarded to the U.S. Department of State for review and approval which may take several months. Only after the Department of State approves loss of nationality is a case considered complete. Upon receipt of the U.S. Department of State’s determination, the U.S. Consulate General will mail the determination, together with the evidence of U.S. nationality to the address provided by the expatriate.
Note: In cases where loss of U.S. nationality is approved, U.S. citizenship documentation will be canceled or annotated to reflect loss of U.S. nationality before being returned to expatriates. Certificates of U.S. Naturalization will not be returned, but forwarded to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service.
U.S. citizens who have carefully reviewed and understand the information provided above, should email the American Citizen Services (ACS) unit at the Consulate General serving your area to schedule their initial mandatory interview. Citizens should provide full name, mailing address, daytime contact telephone number and specify the type of service being requested, either renunciation or relinquishment. ACS representatives will contact interested parties shortly thereafter.
The current fee for renouncing U.S. nationality is payable during the final interview.
Renunciation and Relinquishment
The subsequent information explains the difference between renunciation and relinquishment of U.S. nationality.
Renunciation of U.S. citizenship
Renunciation is the voluntary act of formally renouncing U.S. nationality before a diplomatic or consular officer of the United States of America. This act must take place outside the U.S.
Section 349 (a)(5) of the Immigration and Nationality Act presents an overview of the act of renunciation, and provides important information that U.S. citizens should consider prior to performing the act.
Relinquishment of U.S. citizenship
Relinquishment of U.S. nationality occurs if one or more potentially expatriating act(s) is voluntarily performed with the intent of giving up U.S. nationality.
Please refer to Section 349 of the Immigration and Nationality Act for advice regarding the possible loss of U.S. citizenship.
Further information on Renunciation and Relinquishment of U.S. nationality is available at the following links: