Immigration for a Person Born in the United States to a Foreign Diplomat

Immigration for a Person Born in the United States to a Foreign Diplomat


While being born in the United States as the child of a foreign diplomat does not automatically grant you United States citizenship, it does offer a path towards a green card. 

This is accomplished through the successful completion of an I-485 application. Your parent’s accredited title must be listed in the State Department Diplomatic List, also known as the Blue List. You must also submit a Form I-508 waiving your rights to diplomatic immunity. 

Eligibility Criteria for Persons Born to Foreign Diplomats

A person born to a foreign diplomat may receive a green card if:

  • They were born in the United States to a foreign diplomat, including ministers, ambassadors, charges d’affaires, counselors, secretaries and attaches of embassies and legations, and members of the Delegation of the Commission of European Communities, or those with comparable diplomatic status and immunities assigned to the United Nations or to the Organization of American States.
  • Have resided in this country, continuously, since birth.
  • You have not abandoned your residence in the United States.
  • The applicant waives diplomatic immunity.

The permanent residency provision essentially recognizes that some children of some diplomats have lived here all their lives and know no other home. Registration is voluntary. 

What does continuous residence mean?

If you have never left the United States, it’s easy to see how you’ve met this requirement, but what if you have visited your home country? 

Temporary or extended absences don’t break continuous residence so long as the diplomatic parent remained accredited to the United States during your absence. Even an absence of a year or more may not have broken continuous presence under these circumstances. 

Why must the applicant waive diplomatic immunity? 

A lawful permanent resident may not be immune to the laws of the United States. If you’ve already lost diplomatic immunity some other way, you do not need to apply for it. 

Pursuing Citizenship

Once you’re registered and recognized as a lawful permanent resident you may pursue American citizenship just like any other LPR if that is your desire. 

If your application is approved the date of permanent residence will even be your date of birth, which can make the path to citizenship much faster for you.

Get Help Today

While American immigration law is relatively friendly to the children of diplomats, there are still consequences for failing to fill out the forms correctly, for failing to acquire and submit the proper evidence, and for failing to handle certain pitfalls that might occur during the course of your application.

If you’re serious about registering as an LPR, don’t wait. Contact our offices to get help today.

See also:

Understanding Good Moral Character Requirements for Naturalization

What to Do While Your Green Card Application is Pending

What Lawful Permanent Residents Need to Know About Re-Entry Permits


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