Requirements and Process of Obtaining a Greek Passport

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One of the most frequently asked questions we are asked at Greek City Times is, “How do I get a Greek Passport?”

The biggest mistake made by those attempting to acquire one, is they don’t go through the correct channels. We’re here to tell you that the simplest and most direct way to obtain your Greek passport, is to go through a lawyer. Follow this advice and you’ll thank us later. Going through anyone else who is not a lawyer, will only end up costing you more in the long run and taking much longer.

A Greek lawyer will pretty much do it all for you, seamlessly and stress free. They clearly know the laws and legal system in Greece and will guide you through the entire process (trust the process). A lawyer is like a one-stop-shop, leaving you stress free and confident in your quest.

Understandably, for many who don’t know where to start, even finding a trustworthy, efficient and experienced lawyer, particularly one that specialises in this area, can be a daunting task on its own. But never fear. Greek City Times has done the hard work for you and found an exceptionally honest, reliable and proficient lawyer whose services are available worldwide. Irrespective of which corner of the world you live, you can rest assured you’re covered.

Greek City Times met recently with Greek lawyer John Tripidakis of Tripidakis & Associates, who has provided the below helpful information relating to obtaining your Greek passport.

Exceptionally, there are a number of certificates to which the newly regulated legislation does not apply and the Athens Special Registry remains competent for the registrations:

According to  Chapter C. of Law 4674/2020 (published in the Greek Government’s Gazette on March 11, 2020, 53A’), effective as of January 1, 2022, the certificates of birth, marriages and deaths that took place abroad and involve Greek registered citizens or citizens of Greek ancestry as well as the amendments of such certificates, will be registered mainly by the Greek Consulate directly in the system of “Registry of Citizens”.

1. Certificates of Greek Consulates and of foreign Registries, provided that they have been drafted and issued accordingly until 31.12.2021,

2. Amendments of civil status and corrections on certificates of civil status which have been registered by the Athens Special Registry,

3. The Greek Consulate remains competent simultaneously with the Athens Special Registry for the registration of civil status events that took place abroad and involved Greek citizens on exceptional occasions regulated in the nr. 45927/18-06-2021 Ministers’ Order, except for the ones for which the Greek Consulate must draft the registry certificate (“lixiarhiki praxi”) according to the clarifying circular nr. 697/2021 of the Administration of Civil and Municipal Status of the Ministry of Internal Affairs “Amendment of the Registry Regulation, Access of the Greek Consulate Authorities to the information system of Registry of Citizens”.

Indicatively:

 a. registration of amendments on certificates already registered at the Athens Special Registry, for which a Greek ruling recognising the foreign amendment is required,

b. registration of events that were not registered promptly at the Greek Consulate and the involved parties now reside in Greece or in a country other than the one where the event took place,

c. registration of events for which the interested party’s residence is more than 500 km distance from the Greek Consulate or there is no Greek Consulate,

d. registration of corrections of registry certificates by virtue of final and executable court rulings according to Greek Civil Code procedure Art. 782,

e. registration of events of civil status, when the Greek Consulate’s operation has been seized for exceptional reasons (pandemic crisis, war, interruption of diplomatic relations),

f. events of civil status that took place either within the jurisdiction of Greek Consulate (“amistha”) are registered either to the closest Greek Consulate (“emmistho”) or directly to the Athens Special Registry.

4. The Athens Special Registry has the right to draft reports for amendments of civil status of Greek citizens that took place abroad (any of the above occasions referred in nr. 3 except for d.) as well as reports of informative character  in cases of consensual divorces that are issued by virtue of notarial deeds signed in Greece, provided that the consensual divorce dissolves the marriage that has been registered with the Registry of Citizens by a Greek Consulate after 01/01/2022. In these cases, the citizens may address either to the Athens Special Registry or to the local Greek Consulate.

The Greek Consulates (“amistha”) will not have access to the Registry of Citizens and as a result they will not draft registry certificates (“lixiarhikespraxeis”).

However, in order for a lawyer to undertake the registration of the certificates with the Athens Special Registry which have been drafted or issued until 31/12/2021, he/she should have been authorised by the client by virtue of a power of attorney dated until 31/12/2021.

Acquiring the Greek citizenship

Greek nationality is acquired at birth from a Greek parent, within or out of wedlock (acknowledgment by a Greek father Art. 2) or birth within the Greek territory (Article 1). For the recognition of the Greek nationality, an application should be submitted along with all the required documentation to the Competent Municipality [and then it should be forwarded to the Competent Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, which is the Competent Region; upon review of the file, a decision of the Competent Region will be issued recognising the Greek nationality of the applicant. The competent department of the region should then issue a decision ordering the registration of the applicant with the Greek Male Rolls and Municipal Rolls. Then, the person should proceed with his/ her registration with a Greek Municipality (the Municipality with which his/ her ancestors were registered) and procure a certificate of registration. Another way of acquiring the Greek citizenship is through naturalisation (Art. 5 or 10) or through the procedure of statement (Art. 14).

Depending on the applicable procedure, the necessary documents indicatively are the following:

Greek citizenship at birth from a Greek parent (Art. 1)

  1. Petition of the interested party;
  2. Certificate of the Greek parent’s registration with the Greek Municipality;
  3. Marriage certificate of the parents, Apostiled or certified by the Greek Consulate and translated into Greek;
  4. Certificate of birth of the applicant, Apostiled or certified by the Greek Consulate and translated into Greek;
  5. Certified Copy of the passport of the applicant, translated into Greek or of  the residence permit.

Greek citizenship of child born out of wedlock acknowledged by a Greek father (Art.2)

  1. Notarial acknowledgment by the Greek father or final and absolute ruling of acknowledgment issued by a Greek Court (or a proof of acknowledgment, as indicated by the applicable foreign law), certified and translated into Greek;
  2. Certificate of registration in Greece of the Greek father who acknowledged the applicant;
  3. Birth certificate of the applicant, certified and translated into Greek;
  4. Foreign certificate of family status of the foreign mother or certificate/letter of non-impediment of the mother, certified and translated into Greek;
  5. Certified Copy of the passport of the applicant, translated into Greek or of the residence permit.

Greek citizenship of child born prior to 8-5-1984 by a Greek at the time of birth or at the time of the marriage mother (Art. 14 par. 1)

  1. Submission of statement of the applicant before the General Secretary of the Decentralised Administration or the Greek Consulate of the place of his/her residence;
  2. Certificate of birth of the applicant, certified and translated into Greek;
  3. Marriage certificate of the parents of the applicant, certified and translated into Greek;
  4. Certificate of registration of the mother with the Greek Municipality;
  5. Certified Copy of the passport of the applicant, translated into Greek or of her residence permit.

Greek citizenship of child born by a Greek father prior to the enforcement of law 1250/1982 (Art. 14 par. 2)

  1. Submission of statement of the applicant before the General Secretary of the Decentralised Administration or the Greek Consulate of the place of his/her residence;
  2. Certificate of birth of the applicant, certified and translated into Greek;
  3. Marriage certificate of the parents of the applicant, certified and translated into Greek;
  4. Certificate of registration of the father with the Greek Municipality;
  5. Certified Copy of the passport of the applicant, translated into Greek or of the residence permit.

Naturalisation of Greek ancestry applicants according to Article 10

The Greek Consulate must provide the following documents required for the Greek citizenship process of the applicant to the Ministry of Internal Affairs which are in principle the following:

  1. Petition for the naturalisation signed by the applicant which must be filed before the Greek Consular who will certify the signature;
  2. Statement for the naturalisation filed in and submitted by the applicant filed before the Greek Consul who will certify the signature;
  3. Copy of the applicant’s passport, certified by the Greek Consulate;
  4. Certificate of birth, Apostiled or certified and translated into Greek;
  5. Certificate of the parents’ marriage, Apostiled or certified and translated into Greek;
  6. Certificate of the Greek parent’s registration with the Greek Municipality;
  7. Certificate of criminal record (“poiniko mitrwo”) of the applicant issued by the competent Authority of the applicant’s country;

All these documents (and any supplementary document that might be required by the Greek Consul) must be filed before the Greek Consulate and must be forwarded by the Greek Consulate to the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Athens in order for the Minister, following the opinion of the Ministry of Public Order to issue the Decision in reference to the petition for naturalisation.

All the above procedures can be expedited and facilitated through the intervention of a lawyer.

All the above procedures can be expedited and facilitated through the intervention of a lawyer.

 In Greek citizenship cases such as of Art. 14 or Determination of Greek citizenship in cases of acknowledgment by a Greek father (Art. 2), the lawyer’s assistance is critical for the simplification and acceleration of the process. However, there are cases such as the naturalisation process of Article 10 where the procedure is undertaken exclusively by the Greek Consulate. Even in these cases, the lawyer is useful since he/she will follow up by contacting the involved authorities in Greece, will provide clarifications to the client, will translate the documents, keep track of the applicant’s file, etc.

By John Tripidakis LL.B.(Athens), LL.M. (London)
Greek Law Practice
John Tripidakis & Associates
For all your legal matters, ranging from Greek Passport, Inheritances, Estates and Real Estate in Greece:
Email: [email protected]
Website: www.greeklawyersonline.gr

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