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US Citizenship for person born in the US to a diplomat father. DOS FAM guidelines are under review on that regard? Any hope?

Alexandria, VA |

The Foreign Affair Manual is reviewing the citizenship eligibility for persons born in the US to blue list diplomats. I was born in the US and my blue listed parent didn't apply for my passport or a green card through creation of records. Since the FAM section is under review, can I obtain a US passport? I was born in DC, and always wanted to return to the US and apply. Which I did, as soon as my father diplomatic life ended in 2007. I personally know many diplomats in DC with full immunity who obtained passports for their kids, even when the FAM was still in its old form (i.e no citizenship for blue list parents). I was denied one when I applied in 2009, prior to the FAM review on this. This is very unfair since others in my situation have obtained a passport.

Attorney Answers 2

  1. I recommend that you consult with an experienced immigration attorney in the DC area for this issue. There are many.

  2. Sure, you should have an attorney help prepare an application ... with a legal memo.

    By the way, the final FAM may have more country-specific guidance ... other than a mere 'blue' list. This all stems from the 14th amendment language:

    "All persons born or naturalized in the United States, AND SUBJECT TO THE JURISDICTION THEREOF, are citizens of the United States and of the state wherein they reside."

    Thus, it isn't really a matter of 'fairness' but of Constitutional Law.

    It has to do with the fact that some diplomats and their families are 'immune' from US law (the most we can do is ask them to leave the US as a persona non grata ... even if they commit murder in the US).

    With that said, perhaps it is a matter of fairness ... I'm sure that most US Citizens, if polled, would not agree with giving diplomats immunity from our criminal laws, while passing our US passports to their children at the same time.

    PS Although I can't directly comment on those friends of yours that got US Passports, it is possible that they were issued in error. Thus, you may not want to rock the boat in a way that could result in their applications being re-investigated.

    PROFESSOR OF IMMIGRATION LAW for over 10 years -- -- -- This blog posting is offered for informational purposes only. It does not constitute an attorney-client relationship. Also, keep in mind that this is an INTERNET BLOG. You should not rely on anything you read here to make decisions which impact on your life. Meet with an attorney, via Skype, or in person, to obtain competent personal and professional guidance.

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