Tuesday, March 01, 2011

My child could apply for Malaysian citizenship

In Sept 2009, I raised my concern about the fact that my child would not qualify for Malaysian citizenship as the law says that child born abroad will follow the father's citizenship.

In Apr 2010, the Malaysian government issued a statement saying that children born abroad to Malaysian mothers qualify for citizenship.

I don't know how I miss the news, but starting from 1 Jun 2010, the government has actually implemented a regulation enabling Malaysian women married to foreigners to apply Malaysian citizenship for their children born abroad. Thanks to Sze who sent me the link to Malaysian High Commission in London which contains some valuable information plus the necessary forms Borang B and Lampiran A 15(2).

I contacted the Embassy of Malaysia in Paris, they confirmed that they could now process the Application of citizenship from Malaysian mothers. However, applicant should meet certain conditions:

1. Application of citizenship must be made with the Malaysian Mission overseas in within in one (1) year from the date of birth of child. (I'm so mad at myself, I should have followed this closely. Aelig is already 14 months so it is too late for her)

2. Mother is Malaysian whe the child is born (ok for Aelig)

3. Child is born after a valid marriage (ok for Aelig)

4. Child born before 1 Jan 2010 should apply directly with the Citizenship department in Malaysia. (We could have done that, we left Malaysia just 8 days ago!)

When researching further on this topic, I found that there is a big concern / catch that would stop many from welcoming this new regulation. The parents need to sign the form A 15(2)at the Embassy whereby they declare that their child is holding only Malaysian nationality. Both parents have to agree that their child will be Malaysian citizen and they are fully aware that Malaysia does not recognize dual citizenship.

Does it mean my child have to give up her French citizenship? Will they confiscate her French passport? How can she stay in France if she is no longer French? I wrote an email to the Citizenship department and to my surpise, they replied within a few day! What a big improvement from the government agency! Anyway, from the reply, it says that I could send in my application whenever I return to Malaysia, and I could do this without having an appointment. Besides, my child doesn't need to renounce her French citizenship, she will just need to choose between being French or Malaysian when she turns 21.

Anyone knows of any Malaysian mother who has successfully gotten Malaysian citizenship for her child?

54 comments:

  1. Hi Bee Ean,

    I totally understand your anxiousness regarding this matter.

    I think even if a child is already more than 12 months old, you still can apply, but not at the embassy. You will need to apply Jabatan Pendaftaran in Malaysia ( i think)

    However, the catch remain that Aelig can only holds 1 citizenship. Malaysian government cannot confiscate French passport/citizenship lah. If got caught, they can only cancel a Malaysian citizen's Malaysian citizenship...

    Also, despite international convention, Malaysia does not sign up to the 16/18/21 years and then choose rule. So, a Malaysian can never (minor or otherwise), holds dual citizenship (technically). of course many malaysian born overseas will have broken this rule, legally.

    Regards
    Casper.... (it has been a while...)

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  2. Hi Casper,

    Do you know of any Malaysian mother who successfully applied for the Malaysian citizenship for her child?

    I wrote to JPN, in the reply it was mentioned my daughter doesn't have to give up her French citizenship, she can choose when she turns 21.

    Regards
    Bee Ean

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  5. Hi Bee Ean,

    My son received his Malaysian Citizenship in Feb 2011. We made a trip back to Malaysia to get the actual certificate in March but they had already sent it to our local Consulate. So, anyway we applied for a copy of the cert which took them 2 days to issue. At the same time, we applied for his Malaysian passport which took a couple of hours, or even less, to issue. The public sector has certainly improved in terms of efficiency. I was rather impressed myself.

    Cheers,
    ~jt

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  6. Hi Sze,

    Please let me know when you hear from them.

    Hi Jane,

    That's very good news! May I know how long it took you to have the approval (from the time you submitted to the time they informed you it was approved). Also, is your son born after Jan 2010? My daughter was born before Jan 2010 and they told me I need to go back and apply in Malaysia.

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  7. Hi Bee Ean,

    Indeed it is! We submitted the application in late July 2010 and we received the citizenship cert. in March 2011. So, approx 7-8 months. The approval was in Feb 2011 but we didn't receive the official letter till end of Feb.

    My son was born in early July 2010. We lodged the application a.s.a.p. since we were expected to travel to Malaysia in early Feb (purchased the tickets the year prior). Our travel plan went a bit haywired when we didn't receive the official letter in time. Without the letter, we couldn't get an emergency travel doc. Without the travel doc, we couldn't apply for a return visa, and so forth... It was a bit of a drama but we survived it alright.

    I'm not sure what the exact ruling is regarding timeframes but I have read online claims about applying in Malaysia. Are you intending to go ahead with the application?


    ~jt

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  8. Hi Jane,

    Your son didn't get the citizenship where he is born (not sure if you live in France or US)? Why did he need a return visa? That's good news it only took 7 months.

    Well, we want to do it but it has to be done in Malaysia and we don't know when we are going back again. Hope it's going to be in 2012.

    Thanks for all the information.

    Bee Ean

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  9. Hi Bee Ean,

    Well, by virtue of him being born here in Australia and at least one of his parents is a PR, he is automatically an Australian citizen. However, we refrained from applying for an Australian passport for him in case it jeopardises his chances of getting the Malaysian citizenship. We will leave it up to him to make that choice as and when necessary. In the meantime, he travels on his Malaysian passport with an Australian declaratory visa. I suppose the visa enables him to re-enter Australia without my having to explain to immigration why he's not carrying an Australian passport.

    Hope everything turns out the way you want them to.

    Cheers,
    ~jt

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  10. Hi Jane,

    My son born in Australia too. I would like to apply for Australian declaratory visa for him. May I know what is the reason (baby can't travel with Australian passport) you wrote in the 931 form? Thanks.

    Cheers,
    Tiff

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  11. Hi BeeEan,
    I stumbled across your blog when I was looking for info on MY citizenship application. I am in a similar situation as yours. My son was born in 2008. At that time, I was told he is not eligible for MY citizenship. So, I applied for a long-term social visa for him, which allows him to stay in MY indefinitely, but I'll have to renew his visa every year. We were planning to apply for MY PR for him once he is 5 y.o(we were told that he needs to remain in MY for 5 yrs in order to lodge PR application).Poor fellow has to be separated from his dad as dad works overseas,and he has to fulfill his MY PR application requirement. I've heard horrible stories on how daunting it can be for the whole PR application process. Some even had to wait up to 10 YEARS for a reply (and doesnt mean it will be approved!). So, with this changed of law, perhaps it will be easier for many of us. Just wanna ask if you have applied MY citizenship for your kid?

    Hi Jane (from Aust):
    Just wonder if you declared your baby is Aussie by birth on the application form? I am due to give birth to my second child in few months time. Will be giving birth in Aust. So, hoping to get this citizenship issue settled when the baby arrives.

    Poh

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  12. Hi Poh,

    No I haven't applied for the citizenship for my daughter. We will do it the next time we go back to Malaysia.

    Please post here if you get more information on this application so that more people can benefit from the latest news / experience sharing.

    Thanks

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  14. Hi Sze,

    That's great news! Thanks for coming back and share this here. Now I know a real case where a baby born in France could get Malaysian citizenship. We will go back to M this summer, I will apply there.

    Thanks again.

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  15. Hi
    I came across your blog when I was researching about citizenship for my child. When you brought your son into MY with a French passport. Once you get in, you applied for MY passport. Do you exit with MY passport or French passport? I'm curious as I may face this in the future.

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  16. Hi Dragon Karma,

    My daughter doesn't have Malaysian citizenship so I didn't ask for a Malaysian passport for her. Sorry can't reply your question.

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  17. Thank you for posting this topic, as I find it very useful. I am a Malaysian mother, child born in the UK, before 1 Jan 2010, with a foreign father. I will be going back to Malaysia next week to apply for the Malaysian citizenship for my child.

    since your blog started more than a year ago, may I know if there is any changes, new updates relating to this type of citizenship application?

    Many thanks.

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  18. Hi cyy,

    I don't know if there is any changes to the application process. I will also be applying around end of August. You might want to contact the JPN before going.

    Let me know how it goes with your application.

    Thanks

    Bee Ean

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  19. Hi Bee Ean,

    Did you manage to get your son a Malaysian citizenship after all?

    I am a Malaysian woman married to a Canadian residing overseas and my mother who lives in Malaysia mentioned that I cannot get dual nationality even for my son. Reading your gave me hope that he could possibly get Canadian and Malaysian citizenship until he is 21. Would love to hear from you if you would kindly share?

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  20. I Lilynne,

    I handed in the application end of August 2012, still waiting for an answer from the JPN.

    Anyway, some people here did successfully get the Malaysian Citizenship for their child, you may try.

    Bee Ean

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  21. Thanks Bee Ean! Will you please let me know ie email me once you know? I am pregnant and due in February. Doing confinement is a pain and registering our baby in Malaysia is even more of a pain. I am glad you are willing to share with us your experience. I am one happy mama to be1

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  22. Happy New Year Bee Ean! I was wondering if Malaysia is strict with the rule of the child needing to apply for citizenship 1 year from birth?

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  23. Hi lilynne,

    Yes I will let you know once I get news from JPN.

    As of today, your child can apply with the Embassy of Malaysia in your residing country within one year after the birth, or you would have to apply directly in JPN Malaysia once your child turns one.

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  25. is this 21 year old limit official rule?

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  26. Hi Vincent,

    The information was given by JPN Putrajaya, so I think it is official?

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  28. Hi Leuk Ching Ching,

    No I haven't heard back from JPN on my application.
    Why don't you apply from London?
    I'm surprised that the Mal High Comm in London told you that the child can't apply for British passport. My daughter travels on her French passport. JPN has never told me that this was not allowed.

    Good luck.

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  29. Bee Ean,
    Thanks for your reply. Yes, this sound strange but thats what they told me.

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  30. I'm a Malaysian living in the UK and have been doing so for 30 years , I want my son to get Malaysian citizenship but he already has a British passport can he keep his passport but also get the blue IC card to live and have rights in malaysia?

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  31. Hi Kenny,
    If your son has reached 21 years old, he would have to give up his British citizenship if you want him to be a Malaysian. If he is under 21 years old, he can still apply Malaysian citizenship in Putrajaya, but he would have to choose between being a Malaysian ou British when he turns 21.

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  32. I know know this sounds abit dodgey he is 16 and I want him to keep his british passport can he get a Malaysian 1 aswell as a IC lah because I know many Malaysians who get british passports aswell and don't inform the Malaysian government because Britain allow dual nationalitys but Malaysians don't so it will be the opposite and very difficult.?

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    1. If the father is Malaysian (in your case I guess), you just need to apply for your kid's Malaysian citizenship before he turns 1. Since you are 15 years late, you should apply directly with Putrajaya. Why don't you contact JPN directly? These days they have good services, you can have information through email.

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  33. Hi Bee Ean, I just got approval letter from the consulate here in Dubai, as here is where we are staying at the moment and the person in charge says that, when I go get the original certificate in Putrajaya for my daughter, he said they might ask us to surrender her french passport and this got me worried, coz I wouldnt want to do that as when I decided to embark on this, I had the impression that they let the child have dual citizenship up to certain age and then they will decide for themselves if they want to be a Malaysian or a French. Do you have any knowledge of others having to surrender their passports?

    Raycillient

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    1. Hi Raycilient,

      That was JPN's reply to me:
      "Sehubungan itu, sekiranya permohonan taraf kewarganegaraan anak puan berjaya, puan tidak perlu menolak taraf warganegara yang dimiliki sekarang. Walau bagaimanapun, apabila anak puan telah mencapai umur 21 tahun, beliau perlu membuat pilihan sama ada ingin mengekalkan taraf kewarganegaraan Malaysia atau sebaliknya. "

      I didn't know of anyone having to surrender the French passport. But in the worst case, you could reapply the French passport for your kid.

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    2. Thanks Bee Ean, this helps clear some questions in my head. merci beaucoup! :)

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  34. Hi Bee Ean, thank you so much for sharing your experience with us. I'm looking to apply for the Malaysian birth certificate and citizenship for my little girl (she's 7 weeks old this week!) who was born in the UK.

    Do you mind me asking if there are two different procedures.. i.e. we can only apply for her Malaysian citizenship after she has turned 1? We are planning to head to Malaysia next year but keen to hear if it would be possible to do both (birth registration and citizenship) together at the Embassy/High Commission?

    Be grateful for your thoughts!

    By the way, it is lovely reading about your life in France! One of my close friends is also married to a French man but they live in London at the moment. :)

    Many thanks in advanced!

    Sarah

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    1. Hi Sarah,

      What I read was that you could apply at the High Commission before your child turns one. Afterthat you will need to apply personally in Malaysia. I heard that so far most cases applied with the High Commission are approved. While for me since I applied in Malaysia, I still haven't heard from them after 1,5 years. The best is to contact the High Commission directly since my information might be outdated. Good luck!

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    2. HI Bee Ean,

      Can't believe you still haven't receive your approval yet! That's mad!

      I've been told at the Malaysia High Commission that if we would like to get a Malaysian citizenship for our girl, we are not to apply for British passport. Hmm.. apparently Malaysian mum can't apply for Malaysian Birth Certificate but only Citizenship. I find all these details so confusing.

      Anyway I've got the forms now and hubby and I will discuss if we will apply. Thanks for your response!!! Hope France has got some spring weather now... :)

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  35. Hi all,
    Hope u are all well. I have one question which i hope someone can help. Can a child of a malaysian mum own a british and malaysian passport at the same time?
    Thank u

    Jess

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  36. Hi all,

    Here is my case. Me and my wife both Malaysian citizen and both of us are Aussie PR. My son born in aussie and he has obtained his Malaysian birth cert and Malaysian passport. His Malaysian passport indicates that his birth place is Australia.
    He also has his aussie birth cert and aussie passport.

    I have problem on how to use his passport to enter Malaysia.

    When leaving aussie, use aussie passport to exit. I take a direct flight to Malaysia this time. When entering Malaysia, which passport to give the immigration? if I give Malaysia passport, will the officer ask me why my son's Malaysia passport does not have an exit stamp? Bear in mind that my son's Malaysia passport indicates his place of birth as Australia. Any comments on this?

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    1. Hi, I don't have any experience on this as my daughter has not gotten her Malaysian citizenship yet. What I heard from people is that you should use the same passport to enter and exit a country. It is advised also to use Malaysian passport to enter and exit Malaysia.

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    2. Bee Ann,

      Did your application get approved?

      Raymond

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    3. No unfortunately I haven't gotten an official reply from JPN.

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  37. I am malaysian and my husband is a foreigner. I gave birth to my daughter in Vietnam and went to the consulate here with the intention to apply for msian citizenship. Unfortunately they only allow us to apply for birth cert. After waiting for a few months with no reply, we went to Putrajaya JPN to apply with my husband. They did not require my husband to sign anything! N i asked them if he would need to sign anything and they said no! We applied and waited. After a yr a letter came to my malaysia address saying our application has been rejected with no reason given... Sad.

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  38. what happened? in the end, is it possible to get dual citizenship?

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  39. Hi All,
    For your information, we got an approval letter for my daughter's application. She will get her Malaysian citizenship certificate in 2 months. (Got the letter from our last trip to Malaysia, Feb 2016, letter dated May 2014).

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  40. Congratulations.
    I have applied twice for my daughter n got rejected twice.... :(

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  41. Hi Bee Ean, congratulations!!!
    Could you please tell us how is the procedure to get the child´s Malaysian
    citizenship certificate? What kind of documents they need in order to pick
    up the Malaysian citizenship certificate? Is the certificate pick up at
    JPN? Should the child comes along with?
    Thanks.

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    Replies
    1. Hi, you will need to bring along the approval letter, your birth cert and IC, and the fee (RM100 in Feb 2016). Yes you pick it up at JPN and your child has to come along. I will take 3 to 6 months before they could issue you the certificate.

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  42. Dear All,

    Happy ending, we went back to Malaysia in July 2017. We got the citizenship certificate from my family (they picked up for me in July 2016) and we applied for a MyKid for her.

    So, please try to apply, it could work.

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  43. Congratulations to you Bee Ean, here's my case, my daughter was born in Australia and got her NZ citizenship by descent. Becos of Malaysia wont allow dual citizenship, thts why i didnt apply for her Malaysia birth cert thru embassy when she was Born. Now she is 4years , we are going back to M this dec to apply her citizenship thru putrajaya, do u think we got a chance?

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    1. Yes, I think everyone has a chance, but the wait is longer now. It has been more than two years now I applied for my youngest daughter, and still no news.

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    2. Thank for your reply, hope your youngest daughter get them soon. Yeah will be a long battle.

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