Proving kinship with vital records
In our previous article How to get Polish Citizenship Part 2 – Documents proving Polish descent we have covered Polish documents that can prove your right to cerify Polish Citizenship and be a base to start a procedure. Now it is time to go through another important group of documents – vital records. Even though you cannot base your aplication form on them, they play an equally important role. To cut the long story short, they prove that you are a part of your family.
Every governmental authority has to keep vital records of its citizens as they are a basic tool to manage the data of the population. From our point of view the most important are: Birth Certificates, Marriage Certificates/Licences and Death Certificates. All of three are quite self-explanatory, therefore we will concentrate mostly of how to recognize Polish vital records of any kind.
Birth Certificate / Akt Urodzenia
The documents that may be in your possession can have the following polish headlines: Odpis skrócony aktu urodzenia, odpis zupełny aktu urodzenia, Wyciąg z aktu urodzenia, Świadectwo Urodzenia.
Their importance results from the information they convey, meaning that they inform where the person was born, and who their parents were.
Some of you may be quite puzzled why is the birth certificate is not sufficient to get a citizenship? It is because Polish legal system is based on right of blood, which means that the citizenship is not determined by place of birth but by having one or both ancestors who are Polish citizens. You can read more about it in our article Getting Polish Citizenship through Right of Blood (Jus sanguinis)
Certificate of marriage registration / Marriage license / Akt Małżeństwa
This certificate is very important primarily because it proves that a child was born in a wedlock. The certificate could have the following Polish headlines: Metryka Zawarcia Małżeństwa, Akt Ślubu and may have a German headline Heiratsurkunde. We are mentioning the German headline as you must remember that Poland regained independence in 1918.
Death Certificate / Akt Zgonu
Similar to the records mentioned above the death certificate has data, which important for us: place of birth and marital status. To give an example – provided you possess the death certificate of your grandfather, and the marriage certificate of your parents and your birth certificate – we get the entire kinship in two generations perfectly described.
To sum up, vital records cannot themselves be a trigger for the procedure, even though they are extremely important to prove your kinship. If you would be interested in the documents that are essential for the procedure, please read our previous article. If you are not in posession of any vital records, we also offer a service of documents’ search, however first consider taking our free eligibility test.