The process involves finding out whether you have ever possessed German citizenship or not. Where appropriate, checks will be conducted to find out whether, when and on what basis you lost German citizenship. If it can be established that you do not possess German citizenship, a “negative certificate” (Negativbescheinigung) is issued.
How to apply
For persons living abroad, the process is carried out by the Federal Office of Administration (Bundesverwaltungsamt - BVA) in Cologne. Before applying for a negative certificate, please read the Federal Office of Administration guidance.
You can apply directly to the Federal Office of Administration for confirmation of non-possession of German citizenship. The postal address is:
Please use the Federal Office of Administration application forms for your application.
Please note that the application forms must be filled in in German.
When applying for a negative certificate you will need the following documents:
Application form N
Copy of your current official document with photograph (e.g. passport)
Copies of documents proving other nationalities
Copy of your birth certificate
Copy of a document proving your current civil status (unless it is “single”)
If you were adopted, have acquired a foreign citizenship upon application, voluntarily joined the armed forces of a foreign state or have been through another citizenship-related process in the past, please also enclose copies of the relevant documents, together with a German translation, with your application.
Plain copies are sufficient. Certified copies are not required.
Alternatively, you can submit your application via the Embassy in London or the Consulate General in Edinburgh. In this case, please send your complete application documentation by post to the German mission responsible for your place of residence.
The postal address is:
Legal and Consular Section
Embassy of the Federal Republic of Germany
23 Belgrave Square
London SW1X 8PZ
Legal and Consular Section
German Consulate General
16 Eglinton Crescent
Edinburgh EH12 5DG
You will receive confirmation of receipt from us once your application has been forwarded to the Federal Office of Administration. If you have a query about your application, please always state the reference number indicated in this confirmation of receipt.
If additional information or documentation is required during processing, we will get in touch with you. Otherwise we will only be in touch once the final outcome of your application is known. Because processing in Germany is likely to take some time, we would ask you not to enquire about the progress of your application until at least six months have passed since receipt of the confirmation of receipt. If you have any queries about your application, you can contact the German mission responsible for your area using our contact form. You can contact the Federal Office of Administration by email.