Obtaining citizenship in Latvia: ordinary and simplified naturalization

Latvia is a developed country in the European Union with a high level of income, ranked 39th in the Human Development Index. Many immigrants seek its citizenship because of the low cost of living, great employment opportunities and satisfactory accommodation. In addition, obtaining its id-card provides all the benefits of EU passport. One of them is freedom of travel and staying within the territories of other EU member countries.

States where you can freely enter and settle with the passport of Latvia: Greece, Romania, Luxembourg, Denmark, Netherlands, Austria, Poland, Lichtenstein, Bulgaria, Italy, Estonia, Iceland, Lithuania, Switzerland, Cyprus, Sweden, Portugal, United Kingdom, France, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Finland, Germany, Norway Slovenia, Malta, Croatia, Belgium, Hungary, Ireland, Spain.

There are 3 common ways of becoming Latvian citizen:

  • Naturalization
  • Repatriation
  • Investments

This article is devoted to receiving passport of Latvia via naturalization. We will tell you who is eligible for the simplified naturalization procedure, the conditions for acquiring a passport of this state, and the mandatory documents to be submitted.

Obtaining citizenship in Latvia by naturalization

To receive an id card of Latvia through naturalization, you should fulfill a number of conditions. You are eligible for submitting an application if you:

  • Have a solid knowledge of Latvian history, language, culture and are able to pass the necessary exams based on this information;
  • Are at least 15 years old;
  • Have lived in Latvia for at least 5 years with a temporary residence permit and at least 5 years as a permanent resident.
  • Are proficient in speaking Latvian;
  • Have legal income sources.
Ordinary and simplified naturalization in Latvia

In 2 months after submitting the application, you may be asked to take language and other required tests. Children under the age of 15 can obtain citizenship by naturalization together with the applicant without additional state fees. In addition, if you have committed criminal offenses related to terrorism, actively participated in an anti-state or criminal organization, your application will be rejected.

List of documents required under Latvian law:

  • Id card;
  • Document on legal source of income;
  • Your photo (3x4 cm);
  • Application form for naturalization;
  • Confirmation of paid tax;
  • Certificate of no criminal record;
  • Proof of 5-year resident status (with PRP) in Latvia.

If citizenship via naturalization is concomitantly granted to children younger than 15 years of age, it is necessary to submit a document confirming their continuous residence in Latvia.

Latvian citizenship by simplified naturalization

Simplified naturalization stands for acquiring Latvian citizenship in a faster and simpler way. If you have grounds, you can obtain an id card almost immediately (in most cases the government decision is made up to a year).

You may submit an application for simplified naturalization if you are:

  1. A Latvian or a Liv;
  2. Child of a noncitizen or nonnational;
  3. Born abroad, if at the time of the child's birth one or both parents are Latvian citizens;
  4. An exile from Latvia or their descendant;
  5. Parentless and under nonfamilial guardianship in Latvia.
  6. A Latvian language educated person who has completed basic primary or general secondary education.

Clarification of information above:

  1. The candidate's ancestors resided continuously within Latvia between 1881 and June 17, 1940. The applicant must be fluent speaking Latvian and submit evidence of their Latvian or Livonian origin.
  2. If both parents have the status of "stateless person" or "non-citizen", you are allowed to apply for Latvian citizenship between the ages of 15 and 18. You must not have a criminal record, speak fluent Latvian and have resided in the country for five years.
  3. At the birth of a child, parents should decide on the country of nationality of their child. If one of the parents is a Latvian citizen, they can apply for the child's Latvian citizenship.
  4. The person who was a citizen of Latvia as of June 17, 1940, who escaped or was deported before May 4, 1990, is defined as an exile from Latvia. They can proceed with the passport restoration. Those who are their descendants (who were born before October 1, 2014) may submit an application for citizenship and retain their current citizenship.
  5. A child under 15 years of age must have their legal representative sign the application.
  6. After 2 years it is possible to obtain Latvian citizenship.


Latvia is a developed EU country. The simplest way to acquire passport of this state is the naturalization procedure. You need to meet certain conditions to apply. This option requires 10 years of living in the state, but there is a faster possible way — simplified naturalization. It means obtaining a Latvian passport as well, but very quickly. Not everybody can be eligible for it, yet if you fulfill all the criteria, then you can acquire citizenship of Latvia in approximately 2 months.

Migration Centr