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    Naturalization is possible despite second marriage

    A second marriage concluded abroad does not preclude a claim to naturalization in Germany. This has been decided by the Federal Administrative Court, as can be seen from a communication (file reference BVerwG 1 C 15.17).
    The case is about a Syrian who lives in Germany since 1999. His naturalization had been withdrawn after his second marriage had become known. He filed a lawsuit against this withdrawal.
    The civil engineer had married a German in April 2008 and a Syrian in June 2008 in Damascus. The man was naturalized in 2010 on the basis of paragraph nine of the nationality law , which provides for the naturalization of spouses. He confessed to the free democratic basic order; however, he did not conceal his secondness.
    The man had an affair with his cousin, from which a daughter emerged. Since the woman had been completely disenfranchised as unmarried in Syria, he married her, as he testified in court. His German wife finally approved the second marriage. The cousin now also lives in Karlsruhe in a separate apartment; the daughter lives with her father.
    Naturalization withdrawn
    In 2012, the authorities learned from the second, the naturalization was withdrawn a year later. The second marriage showed from the point of view of the authorities that the man was not yet sufficiently integrated into the German culture. Multi-marriage is incompatible with a liberal democratic constitution.
    The Federal Administrative Court has decided otherwise: The principle of “civil-legal monogamy” does not belong to the free democratic basic order. Rather, it is more a commitment to the law and the law as well as the human rights embodied in the Basic Law.
    The prerequisite for naturalization as a spouse is, according to clause nine of the nationality law, that the applicant classifies himself in German living conditions. The Federal Administrative Court has now ruled that the concealed secondment of the naturalization procedure precludes this requirement.
    Two ways to naturalization
    But there is a second way in which the Syrian can become German. According to section 10 of the nationality law, he can be naturalized if he has lived in Germany for at least eight years and can make a living for himself and his family. In addition, the foreigner must therefore confess to the liberal democratic constitution.
    At the same time, the responsible Senate made it clear that the legislature was free to exclude naturalization under Paragraph Ten in a plural marriage. According to Paragraph Nine, a “classification in German living conditions” could be demanded for this.
    The case of the Syrian referred the Federal Administrative Court back to the Administrative Court (VGH) in Mannheim. The VGH now has to examine whether the Syrian had a naturalization right at the time of rescinding his naturalization.

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