Colombian citizenship

Available after 5 years

Colombian citizenship

To apply for Colombian citizenship, you must have been born in Colombia or have been born to at least one parent who is a Colombian citizen. It is also possible to apply for citizenship if you have been a permanent resident in the country for at least five years.

The residency period required is not always as long as five years. If you are married to a Colombian citizen, or have a child with Columbian citizenship, then you only need to have lived in the country for two years. Latin American and Caribbean nationals are eligible to apply for citizenship if they have lived in the country for just one year and Spanish nationals are required to have lived there for at least two.  

Citizenship entitles you to have a Colombian passport, hold public office, be commissioned as an officer in the Colombian military and vote in national elections.

Processing times and costs can vary depending on your nationality, so check with your local embassy or Colombian consulate for more information.

How to apply for citizenship

Steps for citizenship:

A letter must be written to the Ministro de Relaciones Exteriores , requesting citizenship. This letter must include the following:

  • Name, date of birth, current address, contact details, country of origin, current nationality and last address before moving to Colombia
  • A photocopy of your Foreign Identification (cédula de extranjería)
  • 4 Passport Photos
  • A copy from the ID page within your passport
  • Photocopy of Valid Residence Visa
  • Proof of Employment covering the past six months (those who are freelance must have documents to show taxes paid)
  • Reasons for request of citizenship
  • Marriage certificate, if married to a Colombian citizen, or a record of birth if a parent to a Colombian child
  • The letter must also declare your authorisation from the Departamento Administrativo de Seguridad  (Administrative Department of Security) to request a criminal records check from the Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores y de Cooperación (Ministry of Foreign Affairs).
  • Males between the ages of 18 and 50 must show their military status from their country (this can be obtained from relevant embassies or consulates)

You are also expected to pass a test related to Colombian history, geography and the constitution. A Spanish oral test is also required. Those who have a Bachelor’s degree; have completed university in Colombia or are over 65 are exempt from these tests.

Dual citizenship is recognised in Colombia. According to the Constitution, any person born overseas to a Colombian parent can be a citizen of Colombia. In order to apply you will need to go to the consulate with the following:

  • Your original birth certificate.
  • Your parents’ cedula de ciudadania (Colombian ID card)
  • A copy of your parents’ passports, if one of them is not a Colombian citizen.
  • Your parents’ marriage certificate
  • You may also need a blood test to confirm your blood type

Further reading

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