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Polish Citizenship request rejected--military service of father


helcha 3 | 10
18 Jan 2011  #1
I applied for Polish citizenship and just receivd my letter of rejection. Reasons given related to my father (born 1900, emigrated to Canada 1927, Canadian citizen 1932), for whom I didn't present discharge papers from the military. Apparently service in the military was until age 50 and as my father emigrated to Canada without official discharge and after becoming a Canadian citizen he therefore lost his Polish citizenship.

My mother never became a Canadian citizen but it seems that Polish citizenship is through the father, when a father exists.

There is the option for an appeal.

Does anyone know the following??

1) How to obtain a copy of a military discharge prior to 1927?

2) Success in applying through a mother's Polish citizenship when a father has lost his?

Thanks for any help on this!

Helcha
Harry
18 Jan 2011  #2
My mother never became a Canadian citizen but it seems that Polish citizenship is through the father, when a father exists.

Depends when you were born. At present it doesn't matter whether your mother or father is Polish: provided that one of them is and they did not renounce your claim to a Polish passport, you are entitled to a Polish passport.

I suggest that you reapply on the basis that you have a Polish mother only and your parents did not renounce your claim to a Polish passport.

I've never heard of an application for citizenship being rejected on the reasons you were given. Does your surname end '-stein' by any chance?
OP helcha 3 | 10
18 Jan 2011  #3
Hi Harry

I was born in 1948. Because my father became a Canadian citizen I was concerned that he may have lost his Polish citizenship and so I applied through my mother. My mother never became a Canadian citizen and this was confirmed by the Canadian government.

The Polish government responded by asking for details of my father: did he serve in the Canadian military, did I have a copy of his identity card, passport etc. I also provided them with my father's birth record.

My surname ends in "ski"...I am Polish Catholic by background.

Thanks for your interest Harry!

Helcha
delphiandomine 83 | 17,596
18 Jan 2011  #4
I was born in 1948.

Off the top of my head, wouldn't you have been stripped of Polish citizenship by the act of...oh jeez, what year was it - 1950 I think? There's an act around that time which stripped Polish citizenship from Poles not living in Poland.
OP helcha 3 | 10
18 Jan 2011  #5
Here is what I have now learned as to why my application for confirmation of Polish citizenship was rejected:

a) As I didn't show proof that my father had completed his military service obligations between the ages of 18-50 (this was the period of 1918-1950) and in addition that

b) my father became a Canadian citizen in 1932

My father, mother and their children lost their rights to Polish citizenship.

This is indeed a very harsh decision. To take away the citizenship of a woman based on her husband's military obligations is something I hadn't expected when I applied for confirmation of Polish citizenship. My father may have served in the military however I don't have any records in our home to prove his service.

If anybody else has had such a decision and appealed it, could you let me know??

Or if you know how to get military records that would also be very helpful.
Thanks!

Helcha
guesswho 4 | 1,289
18 Jan 2011  #6
What's wrong about being a Canadian citizen? You can still travel to Poland anytime you want to, right?
delphiandomine 83 | 17,596
18 Jan 2011  #7
a) As I didn't show proof that my father had completed his military service obligations between the ages of 18-50 (this was the period of 1918-1950) and in addition that

Aha. I've found the basis of this - but read on.

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polish_nationality_law#Polish_migrants_before_1962

Now, you need to consult the Citizenship Act of 1920. This clearly states -

Art. 5. Legitimate children acquire by birth their father's citizenship. Illegitimate children acquire by birth their mother's citizenship. Unknown parents' children who were born or found on The Polish State's territory will be recognized as Polish citizens, as far as their other citizenship will be not revealed.

So yes, you would have needed to obtain Polish citizenship from your father due to the act in force at that time. Now, reading on -

Art. 11. Loss of citizenship happens by:

1) obtaining another country's citizenship;

2) taking a public office or entering the service in a foreign country' army without Polish government's permission. Persons who are obligated to active military service can obtain a foreign citizenship in no other way than after obtaining an obligation release from Ministry of Military Affairs, otherwise, in view of The Polish State, they will be still considered Polish citizens.

Now - this creates a bit of a muddle in your situation. However, I suspect that if you provide proof of his release - you'll find that Poland will consider him stripped of Polish citizenship from the moment that he obtained Canadian citizenship - which by your account, was before 1951.

Sadly, (I don't know this for certain) - but if he was obliged to serve until he was 50, he would have been discharged in 1950 and thus would have lost Polish citizenship at that very point.

This is indeed a very harsh decision. To take away the citizenship of a woman based on her husband's military obligations is something I hadn't expected when I applied for confirmation of Polish citizenship. My father may have served in the military however I don't have any records in our home to prove his service.

No, she wouldn't have lost citizenship due to this. In fact, as I understand it, she may well have retained it for her entire life - however, the Polish act of 1920 makes it clear that you can only obtain it through the father where the parents are married. It's bizzare in these modern times, but you have to consider that this law is 90 years old and in completely different times. Polish society is still very male-dominated in certain areas.

Sorry, but I cannot see any potential appeal for you - the citizenship act is very very clear on this case.

I can pass on an English speaking lawyer to you if you so wish, but it seems pretty clear cut - your father lost Polish citizenship before 1951, and thus you are denied it as a result.

What's wrong about being a Canadian citizen? You can still travel to Poland anytime you want to, right?

Probably there are children who want EU citizenship for their children. Americans (and Canadians) are really restricted in Europe without it.

edit : just noticed this

Art. 13. Granting and loss of Polish citizenship, if no other disposition of Minister of Interior was reserved, concerns a wife of a man who is granted or loses Polish citizenship, and also his children who are younger than 18 years old.

Almost certainly clear cut case - Polish citizenship was lost before 1951, therefore, no option exists to recover it.

And just to confirm this, from the 1951 Act -

Art. 2. From the date this law goes into force, Polish citizens are those, who:

1) in accordance with the previous laws, are Polish citizens.

The father would have lost Polish citizenship beyond any doubt - and this article confirms it.
LewisPilot2013 - | 4
18 Jan 2011  #8
you would have needed to obtain Polish citizenship from your father due to the act in force

I was born in the United States, my father was American and my mother is Polish. Does this mean I cannot get Polish citizenship because my father was American, even-though my mother still has Polish citizenship?
rybnik 18 | 1,462
18 Jan 2011  #9
At present it doesn't matter whether your mother or father is Polish: provided that one of them is and they did not renounce your claim to a Polish passport

How would one know if your parents renounced your claim to a polish passport?
delphiandomine 83 | 17,596
18 Jan 2011  #10
Does this mean I cannot get Polish citizenship because my father was American, even-though my mother still has Polish citizenship?

Depends on whether your mother was stripped of Polish citizenship or not.

The acts are all here - cklawoffice/polish-citizenship-law.

How would one know if your parents renounced your claim to a polish passport?

There's a formal procedure to do this - I think some countries require it before they'll grant citizenship.
Guest
18 Jan 2011  #11
Is it true that the communist law revoking Polish citizenship still applies? My father was in the Polish forces of the British Army in WW2 and came east of the curzon line.

Has he and I lost citizenship?
OP helcha 3 | 10
19 Jan 2011  #12
delphiandomine:

Thanks for your detailed explanation. It never occured to me to get records of my father's military service and so in sharing with others I hope to alert them to this aspect of Polish citizenship laws. You outlined it so clearly.

The appeal period is only 2 weeks and so it doesn't give me enough time to search for these military records in case my father did fulfill his military obligations and his citizenship was not lost.

Its very clear that the obligation is on the applicant to provide this information.

Military service had to be completed in the period 18yrs-50yrs. My father turned 50 in 1950 and so unfortunately his situation fell under this citizenship act that went from 1920-51. I share that as every situation is different and my father's birthdate was important in this case. The Consul General explained that we didn't lose citizenship until after he turned 50.

Hope that helps others.

Helcha
f-stop
19 Jan 2011  #13
obtaining another country's citizenship;

Really?
Harry
19 Jan 2011  #14
According to the laws which were in force at that time, it did. Now traitors and turncoats are allowed (by Poland at least) to keep their citizenship when they turn their backs on Poland. But of course no Pole would ever turn their back on Poland.
delphiandomine 83 | 17,596
19 Jan 2011  #15
The appeal period is only 2 weeks

In light of this - I would suggest (if you really want to pursue it, though I don't recommend it!) contacting a lawyer as soon as possible. I do know a very good lawyer that might be able to help - but I really don't think it's a good idea in this situation as the law seems so clear.

The Consul General explained that we didn't lose citizenship until after he turned 50.

Yep - without being discharged, he would have remained a citizen.

What you can do is if you speak Polish fluently and have stayed "in touch" with Poland, then you can try petitioning the President of Poland as a last resort. It's very unlikely to succeed, but may be worth a try? It's only worth doing if you can move to Poland and integrate immediately, however.

Now traitors and turncoats are allowed (by Poland at least) to keep their citizenship when they turn their backs on Poland.

I'm still wondering why the PRL law allowed them to keep their citizenship.
OP helcha 3 | 10
20 Jan 2011  #16
Thanks for your suggestions. At this point I will just drop it as the timing is very poor and I have already spent a lot of money on this. I wanted to enable my kids to have EU membership but I am not desperate to succeed.
isthatu2 4 | 2,708
20 Jan 2011  #17
It would seem unlikely that a fit young man born in 1900 didnt do some form of mil service if he stayed in Poland till 1927,unless there was a good reason/formal exemption for him not to,surely if the Polish government are implying the records of this are gone in Poland(ww2 tended to do that to paper records around europe) they can not put the onus on you to provide paperwork from pre 1927?
jotunn
20 Nov 2018  #18
but you can get full and unlimited residence and work permit as a "person of polish origins"? And I've heard they even have some public transport discount for such residence permit


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