If you’re Irish descent you should know about Jus Sanguinis…
The Nationality and Citizenship Act allows any person with an Irish grandparent to become an Irish citizen “by registering in the Foreign Births Register at an Irish embassy or consular office, or at the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin.”
Such an individual may also pass their Irish nationality entitlement to his or her children, even if not choosing to take up citizenship, provided he or she has registered with the Foreign Births Register before the children are born.
In a nutshell if you have one or more Irish grandparents, and havn’t claimed Irish nationality, but want to preserve the option for any of your future offspring, then you should register.
It’s one of those things you don’t tend to think about when you’re younger, but wished you’d known about it often after the opportunity has passed. (Sometimes the arrival of a new child is a surprise!)
Here’s the Department of Foreign Affairs in Dublin – the home page has links to Irish embassies and consulates around the world, and here’s the page detailing the documents required etc. It may look a bit long-winded, but not really in the overall scheme of things.
And to finish off, Jus sanguinis is the latin for ‘right of blood’, and is a social policy by which nationality or citizenship is determined not by place of birth, but by having an ancestor who is a national or citizen of the state.
We’d like to see Irish citizenship rules changed, but whilst it is like it is, and if Irish heritage is important to you, don’t let time catch you out.