Dual Citizenship

Old Jul 3rd 2011, 4:43 pm
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Default Dual Citizenship

Hi all,

My family and I moved to Canada a little over 14 years ago. We are now all Canadian citizens. Our British passports expire this year and we are wondering if we need to renew these passports in order to retain our british citizenship.

A little background - my mother became a British citizen in the 70's when she moved to England (originally not born in England). My father moved to England (hence also not born in England) and married my mother but never gave up his Indian citizenship. They lived in England until our move over to Canada.

Any advice would be helpful? We are proud Brits and don't want to affect our British citizenship!!

Cheers,
Mandy
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Old Jul 3rd 2011, 5:20 pm
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

No - you do not need to renew your UK passports to retain UK citizenship. You can choose to renew your UK passports at any time in the future.
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Old Jul 3rd 2011, 8:07 pm
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

Completely agree with Marylandned that you don't need to renew your UK passport to retain citizenship.
However bear in mind that I think it's easier to renew it if you already have a current or recently expired (within the last year I think) UK passport, so if you want to get a UK passport in the future the process may be a hassle even though you'll still be entitled to one. Also if you visit the UK or the rest of the European Union the border control queues are a usually a lot shorter and quicker for people with a UK passport (although you shoudn't have a problem getting i, just a long queue).
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Old Jul 4th 2011, 1:45 am
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

My understanding from the website is that its a renewal within 10 years of expiration, beyond that you have to reapply, which is a lot more hassle than just renewing (which in itself is a bit of a pain now its done through Washington)

FWIW Ive dodged long queues on arrival at Gatwick by taking the expired UK passport along with the current Canadian one... YMMV. Canadian family came in line with me no problem too.

Last edited by iaink; Jul 4th 2011 at 1:48 am.
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Old Jul 4th 2011, 3:45 am
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

Thanks guys! I think we are going to go ahead and renew now then - just in case - to save hassle later on.

We just recently become Canadian citizens and prior to this have been travelling back to England using our UK passport. Now that we have both passports - if we use the British one to travel in Europe - will there be a hassle at Canadian Immigration when we try to get back home? Any thoughts?
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Old Jul 4th 2011, 3:51 am
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

Originally Posted by MarylandNed
No - you do not need to renew your UK passports to retain UK citizenship. You can choose to renew your UK passports at any time in the future.
Agreed. My understanding is that you are a UK citizen forever unless you decide to formally renounce your citizenship.

But out of interest, is it easy/possible to renew one's passport remotely from Canada, or is a trip to the UK necessary?

My wife's passport has 9 years left to run on it, but mine expires in 2014, and will want to get another UK passport.

I assume after you have your PR card the visa sticker in the back of the passport is useless?

Wayne.
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Old Jul 4th 2011, 3:54 am
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

Originally Posted by Mandy_101
Thanks guys! I think we are going to go ahead and renew now then - just in case - to save hassle later on.

We just recently become Canadian citizens and prior to this have been travelling back to England using our UK passport. Now that we have both passports - if we use the British one to travel in Europe - will there be a hassle at Canadian Immigration when we try to get back home? Any thoughts?
Yes that's the best way of doing it - use UK passport when travelling to UK/Europe and Canadian passport on the return trip to Canada.

Incidentally - did you know that a UK passport allows you to travel to more countries (about 166 or so I think) without requiring a travel visa than any other passport in the world?

Makes it kinda handy to keep up to date, IMO

Wayne.
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Old Jul 4th 2011, 4:02 am
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

There are no exit controls in Canada, no one cares which passport you travel on.

Personally I see no point in spending several hundred bucks to keep a UK passport current, Ill just do it when Im approaching the ten year mark. each to their own though.

A UK passport is handier for travel around Europe though I guess, if thats on your agenda. For the places I am likely to end up Canadian is just fine.

You can renew a UK passport from within Canada, just send the forms and necessary documentation / pictures to the office in Washington. Technically you cant renew it in the UK unless you want to go along to the office in person, but people maybe get them sent to family and forwarded on?

For a PR The paper visa form is still important, dont lose it! Once you are a citizen then they take it out.

Last edited by iaink; Jul 4th 2011 at 4:05 am.
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Old Jul 4th 2011, 4:28 am
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

Originally Posted by iaink
There are no exit controls in Canada, no one cares which passport you travel on.

Personally I see no point in spending several hundred bucks to keep a UK passport current, Ill just do it when Im approaching the ten year mark. each to their own though.

A UK passport is handier for travel around Europe though I guess, if thats on your agenda. For the places I am likely to end up Canadian is just fine.

You can renew a UK passport from within Canada, just send the forms and necessary documentation / pictures to the office in Washington. Technically you cant renew it in the UK unless you want to go along to the office in person, but people maybe get them sent to family and forwarded on?

For a PR The paper visa form is still important, dont lose it! Once you are a citizen then they take it out.
Likewise, my UK one ran out 12 years ago, never saw the point spending the money to renew it. Used to go to Europe several times a month using Canadian passport, never an issue.

If you are in Canada and travelling to the US, it is a lot easier on a CDN passport than UK one.
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Old Jul 5th 2011, 2:42 am
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

Originally Posted by iaink
There are no exit controls in Canada, no one cares which passport you travel on.

Personally I see no point in spending several hundred bucks to keep a UK passport current, Ill just do it when Im approaching the ten year mark. each to their own though.

A UK passport is handier for travel around Europe though I guess, if thats on your agenda. For the places I am likely to end up Canadian is just fine.

You can renew a UK passport from within Canada, just send the forms and necessary documentation / pictures to the office in Washington. Technically you cant renew it in the UK unless you want to go along to the office in person, but people maybe get them sent to family and forwarded on?

For a PR The paper visa form is still important, dont lose it! Once you are a citizen then they take it out.
What happens if your UK passport expires prior to getting citizenship. Since then you'd need a new UK passport - which I am guessing won't come with a visa sticker in the back of it?

We should have our visas in just over 2 weeks (taking the passports in on Thursday), but my passport expires in 2014 so we won't have applied for citizenship at that point. So I will need a new UK passport then.

Wayne.
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Old Jul 5th 2011, 3:04 am
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

Originally Posted by Waggle
What happens if your UK passport expires prior to getting citizenship. Since then you'd need a new UK passport - which I am guessing won't come with a visa sticker in the back of it?

We should have our visas in just over 2 weeks (taking the passports in on Thursday), but my passport expires in 2014 so we won't have applied for citizenship at that point. So I will need a new UK passport then.

Wayne.
For travel purposes the PR card with a UK passport will suffice. Just keep the large paper form when you send the UK passport off for renewal "just in case", but Im pretty sure that they return the old passport (stamped void) with the new one... The paper record of landing is a handy thing to have later on.

I havent renewed my UK passport over here yet, I travel on a Canadian one now, but I think thats how it works. Gotta renew it in the next couple of years.

Not seing anything on the washington website regarding how expired a passport can be before you cant renew it anymore. Anyone know?
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Old Jul 5th 2011, 4:04 am
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

Originally Posted by iaink
For travel purposes the PR card with a UK passport will suffice. Just keep the large paper form when you send the UK passport off for renewal "just in case", but Im pretty sure that they return the old passport (stamped void) with the new one... The paper record of landing is a handy thing to have later on.
When I renewed mine, the old one was returned with one corner cut off.

The visa is invalid once you have landed anyway, so having it in the passport (old or new) is pretty irrelevant anyway isn't it?
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Old Jul 5th 2011, 6:19 am
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

Many people are British citizens and do not even know it. I only realized when I was in my 20s. Needless to say, not renewing or having a passport in those early years did not have any impact on my citizenship.

Also note that it is about 1/2 price to renew a British passport in the UK. You have to be in the UK when you post it though. You might want to just wait and renew when you are over for a visit.
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Old Jul 5th 2011, 6:28 am
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

Originally Posted by bewillow
Many people are British citizens and do not even know it. I only realized when I was in my 20s. Needless to say, not renewing or having a passport in those early years did not have any impact on my citizenship.

Also note that it is about 1/2 price to renew a British passport in the UK. You have to be in the UK when you post it though. You might want to just wait and renew when you are over for a visit.
The form was very specific, its to be used only by UK residents. The only work around would be to take the day and go to the local passport office and do it that way.

I dont know that they would not send it to a relative, but I imagine that they do some background checks on passport applicants, otherwise what is the point of the while vetting process.

There have been circumstances in the past with both UK and Canadian passport law where if you were eligable but did not apply by a certain point in time then that boat sailed without you. I will be getting UK passport for my kids around the time they are 16, then they have it and are grandfathered in should the law change in future.
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Old Jul 5th 2011, 6:35 am
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Default Re: Dual Citizenship

Originally Posted by iaink
The form was very specific, its to be used only by UK residents. The only work around would be to take the day and go to the local passport office and do it that way.
You can not send the form to the UK from Canada. They will cash your cheque and send back the stuff unprocessed. But you can renew while in the UK...

http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/TravelAn...tion/DG_183772

Renewing or applying for your passport while visiting the UK
If you don't live in the UK, you can renew or apply for your British passport while you're visiting the UK.

[...]

Renewing your passport during a long visit to the UK
If you’re in the UK for longer than three weeks, you can also apply to renew your passport using the standard renewal process. This process usually takes about three weeks but turnaround times aren’t guaranteed.
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