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2. U.S. Department of State telegram to all U.S. diplomatic and consular posts abroad regarding the Child Citizenship Act of 2000, January 18, 2001.


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R 180000z jan 01

Fm secstate washdc

To all diplomatic and consular posts

Special embassy program

Bt

Unclas section 01 of 03 state 009319

E.o. 12958: n/a

Tags: cpas

Subject: H.R. 2883 - Child Citizenship Act of 2000

1. Summary on October 30, 2000, President Clinton signed

into law H.R. 2883, "Child Citizenship Act of 2000." this

cable provides the salient features of the legislation

which becomes effective on February 27, 2001. In

addition, at paragraph seven below, posts will find a

series of Q's and A's pertaining to this law. In a

nutshell, H.R. 2883 amends section 320 of the immigration

and nationality act so as to facilitate the automatic

acquisition of U.S. citizenship for children (both

biological and adopted) of U.S. citizens who are born

abroad and who do not acquire citizenship at birth. In

addition, the bill repeals INA section 321 and amends INA

Section 322 so as to apply only to children who reside

outside of the United States. End summary

----------------------------------------------------------

INA section 320: automatic acquisition of U.S. citizenship

for some children

----------------------------------------------------------

2. On October 30, 2000, President Clinton signed into law

2883, "Child Citizenship Act of 2000." section 101

of the act amends INA section 320 so that "(a) a child

born outside of the United States automatically becomes a

citizen of the United States when all of the following

conditions have been fulfilled:

(1) at least one parent of the child is a citizen of the

United states, whether by birth or naturalization.

(2) the child is under the age of eighteen years.

(3) the child is residing in the United States in the legal

and physical custody of the citizen parent pursuant to a

lawful admission for permanent residence.

(b) subsection (a) shall apply to a child adopted by a

United States citizen if the child satisfies the

requirements applicable to adopted children under section

101(b) (1) -"

-------------------------------------------------------

INA section 322: certificate of citizenship to children

who reside abroad

-------------------------------------------------------

3. Section 102 of the act serves to amend INA section 322

in the following manner: "(a) a parent who is a citizen of

the United States may apply for naturalization on behalf

of a child born outside of the United States who has not

acquired citizenship automatically under section 320. The

Attorney General shall issue a certificate of citizenship

to such parent upon proof, to the satisfaction of the

Attorney General, that the following conditions have been

fulfilled:

(1) at least one parent is a citizen of the united states,

whether by birth or naturalization.

(2) the United States citizen parent- (a) has been

physically present in the United States or its outlying

possessions for a period or periods totaling not less than

five years, at least two of which were after attaining the

age of fourteen years; or (b) has a citizen parent who has

been physically present in the United States or its

outlying possessions for a period or periods totaling not

less than five years, at least two of which were after

attaining the age of fourteen years.

(3) the child is under the age of eighteen years.

(4) the child is residing outside of the United States in

the legal and physical custody of the citizen parent, is

temporarily present in the United States pursuant to a

lawful admission, and is maintaining such lawful status.

(b) upon approval of the application (which may be filed

from abroad) and, except as provided in the last sentence

of section 337 (a), upon taking and subscribing before an

officer of the service within the United States to the

oath of allegiance required by this act of an applicant

for naturalization, the child shall become a citizen of

the United States and shall be furnished by the attorney

general with a certificate of citizenship.

(c) subsections (a) and (b) shall apply to a child adopted

by a United States citizen parent if the child satisfies

the requirements applicable to adopted children under

Section 101(b) (1)."

4. Posts will note that INA section 322 continues to apply

only to children who reside abroad and who are only

temporarily in the U.S. pursuant to a lawful admission.

________________________

INA section 321 repealed

________________________

5. Section 103 of H.R. 2883 repeals in its entirety INA

Section 321 ("child born outside of United States of alien

parent; conditions under which citizenship automatically

acquired").

______________

Effective date

6. The bill's effective date is 120 days after its

enactment (i.e., February 27, 2001). It applies to all

individuals who meet the requirements of amended sections

320 and 322 on that date.

___________

Q's and A's

7. Q: does this legislation change the manner by which

children adopted overseas by American citizens are brought

into the United States?

A: no.

Q: does section 320 apply to foreign-born children who

are adopted in the U.S. as well as those who have been

adopted abroad?

A: yes, as long as the child meets the requirements of

INA sections 101(b)(1)(e) or (f) and was admitted into the

U.S as a LPR.

Q: will a child who acquires citizenship pursuant to

amended section 320 need to apply to INS for a certificate

of citizenship or any other documentation?

A: no. As soon as the child can demonstrate that the

three conditions now set out in section 320 have been met,

s/he is a U.S. citizen and can be documented as such with

A U.S. passport. In addition, the child can also apply to

INS for a certificate of citizenship. It must be

emphasized, however, that neither a passport nor a

certificate of citizenship is a prerequisite for

citizenship acquisition.

Q: does it matter in which order the three conditions

are satisfied?

A: no. The child acquires citizenship automatically

as soon as the last of the three requirements has been

fulfilled.

Q: will a child's claim to ciitzenship pursuant to

amended section 320 be adversely affected by the fact that

s/he returns overseas after having been admitted into the

U.S. as a LPR but prior to being documented with a

passport or certificate of citizenship? Can post issue a

passport in these circumstances?

A: yes, a passport can be issued. Again, the child's

claim to U.S. citizenship vests as soon as the three

conditions set out in section 320 are satisfied. The

department is of the view that the residence requirements

of the new law are met as soon as INS admits the child

stateside as a LPR. Such an interpretation, we believe,

is consistent with the intent of congress to streamline

the acquisition of citizenship in these cases.

Q: is the law retroactive?

A: no. Individuals who are 18 years of age or older

on February 27, 2001, do not qualify under this law

notwithstanding the fact that they meet the law's other

criteria; however, children, including those adopted prior

to February 27, 2001, who are under 18 and residing in the

United States as a LPR in the legal and physical custody

of a U.S. citizen parent on February 27, 2001 acquire

citizenship automatically.

Q: will foreign service posts issue reports of birth

for children who acquire citizenship under amended section

320?

A: no. Reports of birth are issued only to children

who acquire citizenship pursuant to chapter 1

("nationality at birth and by collective naturalization")

of title iii of the INA. Citizenship acquired by virtue

of section 320 is deemed naturalization in accordance with

chapter 2 of title iii of the INA.

Q: can children who heretofore have not been documented

as American citizens but who now meet the requirements of

Section 320 be documented as american citizens?

A: yes.

Q: what happens if a child has LPR status and otherwise

meets the conditions of section 320 but is currently

temporarily overseas?

A: the child acquires citizenship automatically under

Section 320 as soon as s/he is next admitted stateside as

a LPR, provided that s/he is under the age of 18 at the

time of admission.

Q: can posts issue an niv to a child so as to enable

her/him to acquire a certificate of citizenship pursuant

to amended section 322?

A: yes, provided the child demonstrates an intent to

return to a residence abroad after a temporary visit to

the U.S.

Q: what if citizenship applications have already been

filed for children who are eligible for automatic

citizenship under the new law?

A: until February 27, 2001, INS will continue to

process all currently pending applications for

certificates of citizenship under the current law.

effective February 27, 2001, INS will begin processing all

pending and newly filed applications for certificates of

citizenship under the new law.

* * * *

Talbott

Bt

#9319



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