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Claiming German citizenship - advice needed

(30 Posts)
Rowantree Thu 15-Mar-18 18:56:49

My father was a refugee from Nazi Germany and came over with the Kindertransport in July 1939.

His parents didn't get out - my father couldn't raise enough money in time to help them. They were murdered in Auschwitz.

Like many other children of holocaust survivors I am entitled to claim German citizenship (dual). I don't want to
lose my British citizenship. However, I'm at a loss to know where to begin. Contacting the German embassy is very difficult. I finally found a phone number and spoke to someone who gave me an email address. I emailed with my requests, saying that I have all necessary documentation from my father, signed by a solicitor. I've heard nothing, not even an acknowledgement that my email has been read.
This is a long shot, I know - but does anyone know of a better way of contacting an appropriate person in the Embassy and talking to a human being?

maryeliza54 Thu 15-Mar-18 19:24:33

Did you find this? It includes a link to the forms you need

Fennel Thu 15-Mar-18 19:28:42

I'm sending you a pm.

Cherrytree59 Thu 15-Mar-18 19:53:16

I can't help Rowantree

You have an incredible family history, I wish you well with your duel citizenship.

Jalima1108 Thu 15-Mar-18 19:55:55

I don't know about Germany and how to proceed, but someone should have responded to you so perhaps the email address was wrong or an old one.

However, you should not lose your British citizenship; it is only certain countries that would make you renounce your citizenship of birth and I don't think that Germany is one of them.

Jalima1108 Thu 15-Mar-18 19:59:59

silverlining48 Thu 15-Mar-18 22:35:31

This is of interest to me as well, I eventually got through to the german embassy but heard nothing further.

maryeliza54 Thu 15-Mar-18 23:38:42

I have given a link which covers this

Rowantree Fri 16-Mar-18 00:05:27

Thank you - I will keep trying and the link maryeliza gives looks most relevant. Silverlining48 do you recall who you contacted at the Embassy? I'm even considering going there with my papers and demanding an audience!

silverlining48 Fri 16-Mar-18 09:03:01

I tried a number of times but the person I spoke to at the embassy didn’t know and no one came back to me. I contacted the honourary consul for our area but heard today that he can’t help and I should contact the embassy!

silverlining48 Fri 16-Mar-18 10:54:06

Rowan have pm’d you.

Rowantree Fri 16-Mar-18 11:21:59

Thank you - read and replied :-)

Wheniwasyourage Fri 16-Mar-18 15:17:25

How interesting - there was an article by Kate Figes in last weekend's Guardian magazine about doing the same thing. Good luck, Rowantree, I hope you have found out how to go about it now.

JackyB Fri 16-Mar-18 16:27:08

Message deleted by Gransnet. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

MargaretX Fri 16-Mar-18 22:03:39

I think you have chosen a busy time for getting German Citzenship. Apart from all the Brits in Germany, there are thousands of refugees keeping the staff busy -even if not with applications for Citizenship- it is the same office staff and they are terribly overworked at the moment.

Perhaps it would help if you got the documents translated and came to Germany yourself to deliver your application.
There are special offices for dealing with those sort of questions and a personal appearance would get things going.

The Embassy represents Germans in Britain.

You are correct that being German comes from the father's side and I think now that other life circumstances apply and the language is very important.

You would not lose your British citizenship but have dual nationality which I have had for 40 years.

grandtanteJE65 Sat 17-Mar-18 10:38:13

I can't help with the application, but if you do need to take a citizen test, you may find the following helpful:

Fennel Sat 17-Mar-18 21:37:16

I saw an advert today for a company called Passportia which deals with German Citizenship Claims.
Tel: +44 20 7993 8975
I haven't been able to speak to my friend yet.

BlueBelle Sat 17-Mar-18 21:54:05

Unsavoury Arabs !! What a nasty thing to say

maryeliza54 Sat 17-Mar-18 23:33:42

OP is entitled to citizenship under article 116 and so won’t be subject to the same rules as British citizens without her sort of history wanting to get German citizenship. She’ll also probably avoid having to queue up with nasty racist British people if she’s lucky.

Fennel Sun 18-Mar-18 10:08:03

I also read yesterday that Germany is planning a change in the law which allows Holocaust survivors to claim compensation for family property taken over by the Nazis.
This will probably end next year.

Fennel Sun 18-Mar-18 10:10:15

ps I should have said property of survivors or family members of those german Jews who died in the ~Holocaust.

Rowantree Fri 23-Mar-18 15:03:44

My father's family home is now in Poland, so claiming compensation for the loss of that wouldn't be easy. My grandparents were then forcibly moved around to other shared dwellings until their arrest and deportation. My great aunt had a lovely old inn (another part of Germany) but that has been converted to a house and is not the heavenly place my father remembers from his childhood. I'd love to have that back for my father's sake, even so, but it's not going to happen.

Rowantree Fri 23-Mar-18 15:10:02

Just read the post mentioning the 'unsavoury Arabs' and was horrified. I don't want that post in my thread tbh. Is there any way of removing it?
If anyone's in any doubt whether that phrase is racist, substitute any other race or faith and see how that feels.
My father is just one victim of such beliefs and it upsets me when I hear views like this. Have you learned nothing, JackyB?

Jalima1108 Fri 23-Mar-18 15:16:49

Better late than never, I suppose - but how on earth would anyone go about proving ownership after all this time? Records must have been destroyed in all the chaos during and after WW2.

maryeliza54 Fri 23-Mar-18 15:31:59

Jal it’s my understanding that a lot of work goes into proving ownership of previous property - the most famous examples are paintings because of the increase in value but I once met two Germans who received compensation for family land seized and as the land concerned now was part of an airport they are two very very rich Germans😄