Citizenship in Norway - Guide for 2023

Citizenship in Norway

Updated on Wednesday 26th April 2023

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Citizenship in Norway
Many foreign citizens who have obtained Norwegian residency decide to remain long enough to also apply for citizenship. This is one of the most advanced countries in Europe in terms of social security, education and healthcare systems that incentivize people to live here.
While naturalization is the safest option to gain citizenship in Norway, it is not the only one. So, below, our lawyers invite you to discover all the ways in which you can secure a Norwegian passport.

Citizenship options in Norway

Here are the main ways to obtain citizenship in Norway:
  • naturalization;
  • marriage;
  • descent, birth, or ancestry.
The choice on how to apply for a passport for this country depends on several factors, which is why our Norwegian immigration lawyers are at your disposal to help you find out in which category you fit best.

Getting Norwegian citizenship by naturalization

The following requirements must be met if you are an adult who has been residing in Norway in order to apply for citizenship:
  1. first of all, you must have had a permanent residence permit for Norway;
  2. you must have spent at least 7 years within a period of 10 years in Norway (you must have not left the country for more than 2 years during this timeframe);
  3. at the time of application, you must have a valid permanent residence permit (validity that must extend over the processing period of your application)
  4. you must have a thorough understanding of the Norwegian culture, history, and language;
  5. you must remain in Norway while the citizenship application is processed.
Getting a Norwegian passport is not difficult through naturalization, however, you must also know that you will need to pass a citizenship test. More about and also about how to immigrate to Norway so that you can get citizenship is available with our lawyers.

Citizenship by marriage in Norway

Another option to obtain citizenship in Norway is marriage. This applies if:
  • you have resided in Norway for the previous 3 years with your spouse or partner in order to apply for Norwegian citizenship;
  • your marriage must have lasted at least 7 years, and so must your time spent in Norway;
  • you must have had a residence permit for at least one year throughout the previous 3 years.
Also, if you have been married to your spouse for 4 years and have spent the previous 3 years living together in Norway, you may be eligible to file for Norwegian citizenship.
At the time of application, a valid Norwegian residence permit is required. Additionally, you must complete social studies and Norwegian language courses and pass the exams. A clean criminal record is also required, as well living and intending to continue remaining in Norway in the future.
Perhaps the first thing that comes to mind when comparing citizenship by naturalization and marriage in Norway is that the minimum time for living here is the same – 7 years.

Citizenship by birth in Norway

Ancestry is also an option to obtain a Norwegian passport if you are lucky to have parents that were born in this country. At this moment, only first-generation descendants can apply for citizenship this way, namely:
  • children with at least one parent who were born before 2006;
  • children with at least one parent who were born after 2006;
  • children with Norwegian adopted parents;
  • children with parents that have obtained citizenship by application.
All applications must be submitted with the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration.
The Norwegian government allows dual citizenship as of January 2020. This implies that you do not need to renounce your current citizenship in order to apply to become a Norwegian citizen.
If you need support in applying for Norwegian citizenship, please contact us.