The Grandchildren Citizenship Law or Law of Democratic Memory has been finally approved in the Congress of Deputies after a time waiting. This will allow children and grandchildren of Spaniards to obtain Spanish nationality directly, without the need to live in Spain for any minimum period of time! In this article, you are about to learn everything you need to know about this new law and how to benefit from it, as well as the 3 scenarios that have been included.

How to obtain Spanish nationality as a child or grandchild of a Spaniard


In 2007, the Law of Historical Memory was published in Spain, which allowed many foreigners descending from Spaniards to obtain citizenship in the country.

But many political parties felt that this measure was not enough, and that greater efforts should be pursued to expand it.

After different actions, last year the Law of Democratic Memory was finally created with pursuing this aim, an initiative that has been evolving until today it is already a legal text in force in the phase of final approval.

This law was approved in the Congress of Deputies last July the 14th.

However, this law is NOT yet in force. It is currently in its final stage, prior to the analysis of the Senate (read the last section of this blog for more details on when it is expected to be published).

Once approved, this law of Democratic Memory (also known as the Law of Grandchildren) will allow a much larger number of foreigners descending from Spaniards to obtain nationality.

More precisely, it is a nationality by option, that will allow the children or grandchildren of Spaniards to obtain the nationality directly from the consulate (without the need to have resided in Spain for a year as they have had to do until now) thanks to their direct link with Spain (the family relationship).


The 3 assumptions for applying for nationality under the Democratic Memory Law


Can you really benefit from this law?

It depends. For the answer to be affirmative, you must make sure that you are in one of the following three cases.

That is, you can apply for nationality under the Law of Democratic Memory if you are:

  1. Children or grandchildren born outside Spain of a Spanish father, mother, or grandfather/grandmother who was exiled and left Spain for political, ideological, or belief reaons; or due to her sexual orientation; and who due to such exile ended losing or renouncing their Spanish nationality. Their children or grandchildren will be able to apply for nationality through Article 20 of the Spanish Civil Code.
  2. The sons and daughters born abroad of Spanish women who lost their nationality by marrying a foreigner before the entry into force of the Constitution of 1978.
  3. The sons and daughters over 18 years old of those Spaniards whose nationality of origin was recognized by virtue of the right of option in accordance with the Law of Historical Memory (Seventh Additional Provision of Law 52/2007 of December 26) or of the present Law of Democratic Memory.

This last point is fundamental, because as you can see, the adult children of those who can avail themselves of the Law of Democratic Memory (which will enter into force soon), will also be able to obtain their nationality.


When will the Law of Grandchildren come into force?


The truth is that we still do not know when exactly it will come into force, but the process should not take long.

It is currently in the final phase that any law follows before being published.

After approval in the Congress of Deputies, the next step is for it to be approved in the Senate.

Once this happens (which is expected to happen in September), we will know the exact date of publication in the BOE.

When that time comes, you will be able to apply for your nationality under the Law of Democratic Memory.

As always, we will keep you informed through this blog and on our social media channels, announcing any final modification and step-by-step application process once it is finally published.

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