Legal basis of Bulgarian citizenship by origin applications

Bulgarian Citizenship by Origin is based on provisions in the Bulgarian Citizenship Act. The Bulgarian Parliament partially amended the legislation governing Bulgarian citizenship by origin. 

Pursuant to Article 15 of the Bulgarian Citizenship Act, a person who is not a Bulgarian citizen may acquire Bulgarian citizenship by naturalization if he/she meets one of the following requirements:

  1. is of Bulgarian origin; or
  2. has been adopted by a Bulgarian citizen under the conditions of full adoption;
  3. one of his parents is a Bulgarian citizen or has died as a Bulgarian citizen.

Subsection 1 of s 15 of the Bulgarian Citizenship Act is thus the provision which entitles a person of Bulgarian origin to naturalize as a citizen.

Amendments in Bulgarian citizenship by origin programme

The amendments envision that as part of  the procedure, the applicant must provide official evidence of his/her Bulgarian origin. These must be documents, issued by Bulgarian or foreign government bodies.

Pursuant to the amendments in the Citizenship Act, the relationship is now limited to a Bulgarian ancestor up to the applicant’s great-grandparents’ generation. 

The documents the applicant presents must contain information about the names of the ascendant and his / her relationship to the applicant.

In essence this means that a Certificate of Bulgarian origin issued by the State Agency for Bulgarians Abroad is no longer part of the application set. The Certificate was previously an inevitable and time-consuming step, which however did not guarantee approval, and was duplicated by subsequent procedures. Its removal is therefore to be welcomed.

NBLO – Your Bulgarian Citizenship Lawyers

New Balkans Law Office is a boutique law firm with a strong practice in Bulgarian and EU immigration and nationality law. We deal extensively with applications for citizenship including Bulgarian citizenship by investment, Bulgarian citizenship by origin and Bulgarian citizenship by residence, settlement of family members of EU/Bulgarian citizens, and other citizenship and immigration related matters.

For more information, please contact us at: or via our contact form.

More publications