Austrian citizenship For Members

How foreigners can get fast-track citizenship in Austria

Amanda Previdelli
Amanda Previdelli - [email protected]
How foreigners can get fast-track citizenship in Austria
An Austrian and a European flag flutter in the wind. (Photo by Odd ANDERSEN / AFP)

People generally have to live in Austria for at least ten years before they can become naturalised Austrians - but in some cases, this can be cut to six in many instances. Here's what you need to know about ways of fast-tracking your citizenship application.


Austrian citizenship can be granted to people who live in the country through the naturalisation process - which isn't particularly easy. In fact, Austria has one of Europe's hardest citizenship acquisition processes.

If you were not born Austrian, then you are entitled to naturalise after "at least ten years of lawful and uninterrupted residence in Austria, including at least five years under a residence permit", according to the federal government.

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There are also several other requirements, including having "irreproachable integrity" (such as no criminal convictions and no pending criminal proceedings), proving you have sufficient resources to support yourself, having a knowledge of German and a basic understanding of the democratic system, and more.

Everyone applying for citizenship must pass these requirements (with few exceptions). However, the ten-year residence rule comes with many exceptions. Here's how you can fast track your application:

How to apply for naturalisation after six years

If you fulfil the general conditions for naturalisation, you can apply for it after six years of lawful and uninterrupted residence in Austria in any of these cases:

  • You have been lawfully married to an Austrian national for five years and the spouses live in the same household.
  • You possess EU or EEA citizenship.
  • You were born in Austria.
  • Granting citizenship is in the interests of the Republic of Austria "on account of extraordinary accomplishments in the scientific, economic, artistic or sporting fields that have already been achieved or are expected."
  • You provide proof of sustainable personal integration, which can be done by showing a B2 level of knowledge of German or a B1 level and personal integration (such as three years of voluntary work or professional experience in the educational, social or healthcare sector).

READ ALSO: Could Austria change the rules around citizenship?

austria austrian passport

Austrian citizenship is not easy to get. (© The Local)

How can I apply for Austrian citizenship immediately?

The naturalisation process requires you to live in Austria for a certain number of years. Still, some people are entitled to citizenship regardless of how long they live in the country. In fact, they don't even need to live in Austria at all.

This is the case for people with "Austrian blood" (Jus Sanguinis) and descendants of the victims of the National Socialism (Nazi) regime.


Children born to an Austrian citizen mother automatically become Austrian citizens themselves at birth.

But if only the father is Austrian and the parents are not married, then an acknowledgement of paternity (Vaterschaftsanerkenntnis) can be made for the child to become Austrian. In cases like this, children can also have dual citizenship. Furthermore, descendants of victims of the Nazi regime can also maintain their previous citizenship.



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