Eligibility for a CRBA

Children born abroad to U.S. citizen parents may have a claim to U.S. citizenship. The following is a brief description of the various circumstances under which a child born abroad acquires American citizenship.

Child born in wedlock to two U.S. citizens: 

A child born outside of the United States or its outlying possessions to two U.S. citizen parents is entitled to citizenship, provided one of the parents had, prior to the birth of the child, been resident in the United States or one of its outlying possessions. No specific period of time is required.

Child born in wedlock to one U.S. citizen parent and one non U.S. citizen parent on or after November 14, 1986:

A child born outside of the United States to one U.S. citizen parent and one non-U.S. citizen parent may be entitled to citizenship, providing the U.S. citizen parent had been physically present in the United States or one of its outlying possessions for five years, at least two years of which were after s/he reached the age of fourteen. This period of physical presence must have taken place prior to the birth of the child.

Child born in wedlock to one U.S. citizen parent and one non-U.S. Citizen parent between December 24, 1952 and November 13, 1986: 

A child born outside of the United States to one U.S. Citizen parent and one non-U.S. Citizen parent may be entitled to citizenship providing the U.S. Citizen parent had, prior to the birth of the child, been physically present in the United States for a period of ten years, at least five years of which were after s/he reached the age of fourteen.

Child born out of wedlock to a U.S. Citizen mother on or before June 11, 2017

A child born outside of the United States and out of wedlock to a U.S. citizen mother may be entitled to U.S. citizenship providing the U.S. Citizen mother had been physically present in the United States for a continuous period of at least one year (365 days) at some time prior to the birth of the child. (NOTE: Periods spent overseas with the U.S. government/military or as a government/military dependent, are NOT considered as physical presence in the U.S. for transmission under this category.)

Child born out of wedlock to a U.S. Citizen mother on or after June 12, 2017

A child born outside of the United States and out of wedlock to a U.S. citizen mother may be entitled to U.S. citizenship providing the U.S. Citizen mother had been physically present in the United States for at least 5 years, 2 after the age of 14 at some time prior to the birth of the child. (NOTE: Periods spent overseas with the U.S. government/military or as a government/military dependent, are NOT considered as physical presence in the U.S. for transmission under this category.)

Child born out of wedlock to a U.S. Citizen father

A child born outside of the United States and out of wedlock to a U.S. Citizen father may be entitled to U.S. Citizenship providing the U.S. citizen father had been physically present in the United States or one of its outlying possessions for five years, at least two years of which were after he reached the age of fourteen. In addition the U.S. citizen father must acknowledge paternity and agree in writing to provide financial support for the child until s/he reaches the age of 18 years.

Child born outside of China seeking a Consular Report of Birth Abroad

American Citizen Services will accept applications for Consular Reports of Birth Abroad (CRBA) if the child is born outside of China. ACS will forward the application to the appropriate office of the child’s birthplace (for example, the application for a child born in Hong Kong will be sent to Hong Kong for processing) and that office will determine if and when the CRBA will be issued.