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25 years' experience in dual citizenship cases

Most countries allow dual nationality – the right to become a citizen of another country and to hold second (or multiple) passports. Countries like Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand and Portugal allow dual nationality. It gets more complicated with Kenya, South Africa, Zimbabwe and the UK.

South Africa
SA allows dual nationality but you must get permission first
Kenya has recently changed its dual nationality laws
Zimbabwe has recently changed its dual nationality laws

Consequences of dual citizenship

There are several consequences of dual nationality that you should note:

  • The nationality laws of the country of which you’re already a citizen may not allow dual nationality.
  • Under the nationality laws of some countries, a married person automatically takes on their partner's nationality. Children may also automatically take on a parent's nationality even if they were born abroad.
  • Under international law, a country cannot give diplomatic assistance if you are resident in a country of which you are a national. For example, if you hold both UK and Chinese nationality, the UK would be unable to give you diplomatic assistance when you are visiting or resident in China.

Your existing nationality, and that of your partner or children, could be compromised if you take on Australian nationality. You should always seek professional advice when obtaining dual nationality, especially before you travel internationally.

UK and dual citizenship

The United Kingdom allows dual nationality. However, if you hold one of the other four forms of British nationality, different rules apply and you must seek further advice.

Please note: Obtaining a second nationality can mean the automatic loss of one of these four British nationalities. Always consult an expert when applying for a new nationality.

Get in touch with our nationality experts to find out if you’re eligible for a second nationality.

South Africa

Cape Town

Regent Square
Doncaster Road
Kenilworth 7708 +27 (0) 21 657 2120


201 The Annex
Ridgeside Office Park
Umhlanga +27 (0) 31 536 8843

United Kingdom


Castlewood House
77/91 New Oxford Street
WC1A 1DG +44 (0) 20 7759 7514


5-7 Selsdon Road
South Croydon
CR2 6PU +44 (0) 20 7759 7581



9 Yarra Street
South Yarra
VIC 3141 +613 (0) 8651 4500

Sable International is a trading name of 1st Contact Money Limited (company number 07070528), registered in England and Wales. We are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK (FCA no. 517570), the Financial Services Conduct Authority in South Africa (1st Contact Money [PTY] Ltd - FSP no. 41900) and hold an Australian Financial Services License issued by ASIC to deal in foreign exchange (1st Contact Group - AFS License number 335 126).

Please note: Sable International is a trading name of Philip Gamble and Co. Ltd. Philip Gamble and Co. Ltd is registered in the UK with the Office of the Immigration Service Commissioner (OISC) under no. F2001-00004. Our staff based outside of the UK are not regulated by the OISC and may be involved in some client casework. However, they work to the same high standards as our UK staff and clients receive the same service regardless of which office they engage with.

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