Am I a Belgian citizen if I am adopted?
You obtain Belgian citizenship by adoption on the date the adoption takes effect, if you are not yet eighteen years old on that day and you are not emancipated, if:
- You were born in Belgium and were adopted by a Belgian citizen.
- You were born abroad and were adopted by a Belgian citizen born in Belgium or in Belgian Congo before 30 June 1960 or in Rwanda or Burundi before 1 July 1962.
- You were born abroad and were adopted by a Belgian citizen who was born abroad and who submitted, within five years of the date on which the adoption took effect - and before your eighteenth birthday or your emancipation - a declaration requesting that you be granted Belgian nationality. This declaration ('déclaration d'attribution / toekenningsverklaring') must be submitted to the Belgian embassy or consular mission in the main place of residence of your Belgian adoptive parent abroad. If the adoptive parent lives in Belgium, they should contact the registrar in their municipality.
- You were born abroad and were adopted by a Belgian citizen who was born abroad and who did not submit a 'déclaration d'attribution / toekenningsverklaring' within a period of five years following your adoption but you were not given another nationality before you turned 18. However, if you were given another nationality before you turned 18, you lose your Belgian nationality.
Further information can also be obtained by contacting:
- Federal Public Service Foreign Affairs, Nationality Department
- Federal Public Service Justice, Nationality Department
- The embassy or consulate in your main place of residence abroad
- Your municipal authority in Belgium