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What Nationality Are You If Born Aloft?  
User currently offlineArt From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2005, 3382 posts, RR: 1
Posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18186 times:

Supposing you say hello to the world on a Lufthansa flight from LA to SYD. What effect would this have on your nationality? You normally have an automatic claim to the nationality of the land in which you are born. Can you claim German nationality because you were born on a German owned/registered aircraft? If in US or Oz airspace, can you claim one of those nationalities?

Just wondered. When I was a small child I thought I had been born on a plane over the North Sea since I was told I was half English and half Norwegian.

81 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineGulfstreamGuy From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 646 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18174 times:

From what I've heard, wherever the plane lands is where the official birthplace is. So if the plane lands in SYD then the baby's birthplace is Sydney.

GulfstreamGuy  airplane 



"If we couldn't laugh, we would all go insane. " -Jimmy Buffett
User currently offlinePA110 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 2008 posts, RR: 23
Reply 2, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18170 times:
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This is total speculation on my part, but I think that in ambiguous situations like this, the nationality of the parents is the determining factor. I don't know how much national airspace or aircraft registry plays a role, or if they can even be used for the purposes of applying for citizenship other than that of the parents, but I think its an interesting question. Hopefully someone can enlighten us with fact.


It's been swell, but the swelling has gone down.
User currently offlineBoeing7E7 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18164 times:

The Birthplace is that of the air carrier's flag. The citizenship is that of the parents. As an example, if you are born of British parents on an American Airlines Flight to London, your place of Birth is Dallas (The airlines business address of record), Texas and your citizenship is British.

[Edited 2005-03-30 04:07:00]

User currently offlinePlanespotting From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 3529 posts, RR: 5
Reply 4, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18162 times:

well, say an American women-citizen has a child on a plane going from the US to Britain. From my understanding he/she is given dual citizenship in both countries until he/she turns 18. then the adult chooses which nationality they want to be.


Do you like movies about gladiators?
User currently offlineArt From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2005, 3382 posts, RR: 1
Reply 5, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18157 times:

Short and sweet. Thanks for that info, Gulfstreamguy.

Edit: Sorry, lots of posts before I could answer. Thanks for all the info. Not so simple after all, it seems...

[Edited 2005-03-30 04:11:41]

User currently offlineBoeing7E7 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 6, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18127 times:

Quoting Planespotting (Reply 4):
From my understanding he/she is given dual citizenship in both countries until he/she turns 18. then the adult chooses which nationality they want to be.

This is incorrect.


User currently offlinePlanespotting From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 3529 posts, RR: 5
Reply 7, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18116 times:

well gosh darnit. i remember asking my civics teacher in 8th grade and thats the exact explanation he used.

stupid mr. radtke



Do you like movies about gladiators?
User currently offlineBoeing7E7 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 8, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18110 times:

Had a couple of these incidents about 15 years ago working for DL.

User currently offlineLTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13138 posts, RR: 15
Reply 9, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18082 times:

The link below should explain where a child is born to an American citizen outside the USA, which could apply to on a foreign aircraft or ship. Basicly, the American Citizen birth parent is to register that birth with the nearest US Counsular office or Embassy office, and the line of American Citizenship is by the Amerian citizenship of one of the parent. In some cases, proof of paternity may have to be presented for a declaration of citizenship for the born child. Of course, you still have a lot of fun comming into a country without a passport...that must make customs and immigration fun ('do have anything to declare that you got during your visit...')
http://travel.state.gov/family/family_issues/birth/birth_593.html


User currently offlineACDC8 From Canada, joined Mar 2005, 7643 posts, RR: 35
Reply 10, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18067 times:

I would think Boeing7E7 is on the right track. I don't see why you would get dual citizenship just because you were born on a foreign carrier or in foreign airspace. You'd most likely get the citizenship of your parents I would think.

On a positive note, you might get free tickets for life though!  Smile



A Grumpy German Is A Sauerkraut
User currently offlineBAxMAN From St. Helena, joined May 2004, 671 posts, RR: 2
Reply 11, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18070 times:

Quoting Boeing7E7 (Reply 3):
The Birthplace is that of the air carrier's flag. The citizenship is that of the parents. As an example, if you are born of British parents on an American Airlines Flight to London, your place of Birth is Dallas (The airlines business address of record), Texas and your citizenship is British

Really? So a Japanese chick flying SIN - MEL on BA has her child early and thus its place of birth is London??? Someone with the misfortune to fly FR from HHN to BGY not only has to buy a new ticket for their infant, but the aforementioned infant's place of birth is Dublin??? Although every country in the world has a corrupt and illogical legal system, this would seem too illogical - even by a lawyer's standards.

I think Gulfstream Guy's response (reply 1) sounds accurate and then the nationality of the baby is then determined by each individual country's own laws, so in the UK we would look at the domicile of the parents (father takes precedence, if I remember correctly from my Conflicts of laws studies) and the intentions of the parents as to where they were going to permanently reside, to decide whether the newly delivered is entitled to British citizenship.



I need to get laid
User currently offlineACDC8 From Canada, joined Mar 2005, 7643 posts, RR: 35
Reply 12, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18039 times:

Quoting BAxMAN (Reply 11):
Someone with the misfortune to fly FR from HHN to BGY not only has to buy a new ticket for their infant

Now, thats funny! Thanks... bigthumbsup 



A Grumpy German Is A Sauerkraut
User currently offlinePlaneSmart From New Zealand, joined Dec 2004, 987 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 18016 times:

Too many expectant mothers came to NZ to give birth, child had NZ citizenship, parents then sought to settle in NZ with their child.

That loophole closed last year - child now has citizenship of parent/s.

Birthplace would be destination airport, but no longer = to citizenship in most countries.


User currently offlineFLflyguy From United States of America, joined May 2004, 244 posts, RR: 3
Reply 14, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 17997 times:
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My understanding is that an aircraft is considered territory of the country in which it is registered. I remember years ago when I used to work at IAD a couple of instances where with Aeroflot, the Soviets would rush someone onto one of their planes and the U.S. police could not retrieve them (i.e., in the case of a defector, etc.) since the aircraft was considered Soviet soil.

In the case of a birth in-flight, the child can obviously claim citizenship of the parents in the normal way. Whether they can claim citizenship of the country of the air carrier depends on that nation's laws: is a child born in that country automatically eligible for citizenship? In the US, that is the case. A child born in the US can claim US citizenship regardless of the citizenship of the parents. That is one reason why at AA we try to be very careful about transporting pregnant women who are close to delivery - in some of the countries we fly to, a woman would give just about anything for her child to have US citizenship and we have fairly frequent occurrences where she will try to hop a flight literally while she is in labor. Of course, we usually notice that fact and refuse to transport her on medical grounds (since it is obviously best for a child to be born in a more appropriate and supportive environment than an aircraft!).

Now, as to what exactly the birth certificate would read I have no idea!



The views expressed are my own, and not necessarily those of my employer.
User currently offlineSkyhawk From United States of America, joined May 2001, 1066 posts, RR: 3
Reply 15, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 17919 times:

Boeing7e7 has it mostly right. If his imaginary child is on American between Dallas and London, the child does have rights to claim American citizenship, but the child is not deemed to have been born in Dallas. The child's birth certificate lists the birthplace as the longitude and latitude at the time of birth. This happened years ago on a Pan Am flight between the African continent and New York. The birth was in the middle of the Atlantic and as I said the birthplace was latitude and longitude.

User currently offlineTrolley Dolley From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 17918 times:

I was on a flight where a lady gave birth across the aisle from me. It was a British Airways 747 Harare to Lonodn in 1990. The little boy was born over Chad. The birth place was listed as International Airspace. This avoids claims to citizenship against the airspace of the country, the home country of the airline and the country of arrival- in case the flight has to divert for medical reasons- and allows the citizenship to be sorted out in a calm way. Given the event is rare, the rules are applied as if the parent gave birth at the arrival destiantion. As already mentioned, this does not entitle automatic citizenship of the arrival destination.

In my case, the little boy was granted UK citizenship as he would have been entitled to it anyway.


User currently offlineNWADC9 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 4898 posts, RR: 10
Reply 17, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 17889 times:

Question: What would someone that late in pregnancy be doing on an airplane in the first place!?!??!?!?!??!?!?!??!?!?

Quoting Skyhawk (Reply 15):
The birth was in the middle of the Atlantic and as I said the birthplace was latitude and longitude.

Cool, a baby fish! Silly



Flying an aeroplane with only a single propeller to keep you in the air. Can you imagine that? -Capt. Picard
User currently offlineLTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13138 posts, RR: 15
Reply 18, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 15 hours ago) and read 17776 times:

Outside the territorial borders, the national registration of the airline, like that of a ship, will determine the issuer of the birth certificate. As to the USA, the citizenship is per that of the parent(s), as noted in my previous post.

User currently offlineThucydides From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 95 posts, RR: 3
Reply 19, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 17626 times:

Quoting FLflyguy (Reply 14):
Whether they can claim citizenship of the country of the air carrier depends on that nation's laws: is a child born in that country automatically eligible for citizenship? In the US, that is the case. A child born in the US can claim US citizenship regardless of the citizenship of the parents.

FLflyguy has it correct. It all depends on the laws of the country where the child's parents have citizenship and the laws of the country in which the child is born.

So the determination would be based on what ever laws govern who has jurisdiction over the plane, and I would imagine that there are conflicts in the law on this matter between jurisdictions. Some might also argue that until you clear immigration, you are not in a country, whereas in other countries, you may only have to have touched land to reap the citizenship benefit.


User currently offlineRDUDDJI From Lesotho, joined Jun 2004, 1516 posts, RR: 3
Reply 20, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 17592 times:

Quoting NWADC9 (Reply 17):
Question: What would someone that late in pregnancy be doing on an airplane in the first place!?!??!?!?!??!?!?!??!?!?

That was exactly what I was thinking!



Sometimes we don't realize the good times when we're in them
User currently offlineRootsAir From Costa Rica, joined Feb 2005, 4186 posts, RR: 40
Reply 21, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 17578 times:

I thought that after a certain weeks of gestation women were not allowed on board depending on the airline.Correct me if I'm wrong

Quoting Art (Thread starter):
Just wondered. When I was a small child I thought I had been born on a plane over the North Sea since I was told I was half English and half Norwegian.

so that means that if you were half english half scottish you'd be brn an Hadrian's wall  Wink



A man without the knowledge of his past history,culture and origins is like a tree without roots
User currently offlineBerlinflyer From Germany, joined Jan 2005, 94 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 17540 times:

According to german citizenship, this requires at least one parent of german nationality. It doesn´t matter at all where you are born. So being born on Lufthansa is no way of getting german nationality if not one of your parents isn´t anyway.

User currently offlineDeltaWings From Switzerland, joined Aug 2004, 1294 posts, RR: 17
Reply 23, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 17528 times:

Quoting RootsAir (Reply 21):
so that means that if you were half english half scottish you'd be brn an Hadrian's wall

Hadrians Wall is not the border to England from Scotland  Smile


~DeltaWings



Homer: Marge, it takes two to lie. One to lie and one to listen.
User currently offlineB747-437B From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (9 years 6 months 4 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 17416 times:

The definitive answer is as follows.

The baby initially assumes the nationality of the MOTHER for immediate arrival formalities. Remember, the baby has to be classified as a national of some country to complete the paperwork when the plane lands! The nationality of the father is irrelevant until a birth certificate naming him as father is prepared, which cannot be done inflight. In the event of the mother becoming deceased at delivery, the child is treated as a ward of the state whose flag operation is being conducted, and NOT that of the state whose registration is carried on the aircraft (if it is different). If the mother carries dual nationality, then the nationality of the documentation used to make the current flight is considered to be the primary citizenship. The airspace being flown over at the time of delivery is totally irrelevant. The aircraft and all enclosed within it is considered to be the soil of the country whose flag it is flying and the child *may* be entitled to that nationality depending upon individual country laws on the issue. The birth certificate will read "International Airspace" as place of birth.


25 HAWK21M : Pray that there Isn't an uncalled for Divertion. regds MEL
26 DIJKKIJK : Sometime in the 1960s, a friend of mine was born on a Pan Am 707 flying between LHR and JFK. As she was born on an American Airliner, she was given Am
27 TransIsland : That is incorrect. It applies to some countries, but there are many countries that will not give you citizenship just because you're born there, unle
28 Art : My understanding of what you have written is that normally you do not have an automatic claim to the nationality of the land in which you are born. N
29 Post contains images EA CO AS : What Nationality Are You If Born Aloft? You're all wrong - it depends on the airplane...so if you're on a Boeing product, you automatically become an
30 Art : Forewarned is forearmed. I'll try hard to avoid being born on North Korean, Burmese, Zimbabwean etc airliners.
31 COAMiG29 : you belong to the airline for the resst of your life
32 Post contains images TransIsland : I don't know the laws of that many countries and cannot say "normally" or anything. I just know that there are countries where you do not automatical
33 BCAL : B747-437B has given the correct answer in Reply 24. I have confirmed this with a solicitor friend who specialises in immigration issues.
34 Pope : B747-437B what is your source for this?
35 FLY2LIM : Generally speaking, after the seventh month you are now allowed to fly if. My daughter was born in Peru and my wife, who was a US citizen, registered
36 Post contains images FRAspotter : I always thought that it was where the plane landed and not the registration. What if the plane is wet leased?
37 Aeroflot777 : Nationality does is not necessarily determined by the place you were born. For instance, I was born in Moscow, but my sister was born in San Francisco
38 Bucky707 : I don't care where you are born, your nationality should be that of your parents.
39 Starlionblue : It depends. If you are born on US soil (the plane) you can normally claim US citizenship. Same for a ship. Dual citizenship rules vary from country t
40 Trijetman : This is a great and very interesting thread! I'm not sure if we'll come up with THE right answer - suppose it depends on many factors and laws and reg
41 Starlionblue : Airspace doesn't count. The vessel counts.
42 Jtamu97 : Do the airlines make you pay for an extra seat once you have the baby? J/K!! Anyways interesting topic and while we are at the what if's..What if the
43 Post contains images Elagabal : Hi FLy2Lim, Good to hear of someone else a bit like me - I have dual parentage, and both US and British nationality. Art, TransIsland is right on the
44 AR385 : TransIsland is correct, many countries don't have "ius soli" and won't give you the nationality of their flag carriers
45 Avek00 : "In any case, depending on the particular laws of the particular countries concerned, in certain circumstances a child born over international territo
46 Post contains images LH450 : wow, I didn't know that there is existing a Lufthansa flight from LA to Sydney ...*jk*
47 FLY2LIM : Errrr, not true. Your nationality is determined by where you are born. If your parents are from a different country as you, then you may enjoy the be
48 B707Stu : A friend of mine was born on an Aer Lingus trans-atlantic flight many years ago. She was given American citizenship because her MOther and Father were
49 Isitsafenow : That's a great Q. I would guess an Airbusite a Boeinger or a McDonnell Douglasan just kidding safe
50 Post contains images Starlionblue : Ok, I'll concede that. Well, if US law respects reciprocity (which I don't dispute) and Russia accepts dual Russian/US citizenship, then she would no
51 AirWales : I did not think you were allowed to fly if you were that far pregnant?? Premature births are of course the exception.
52 Danialanwar : every country has its own rules, but I think a common denominator across the globe is that a child gets at least the citizenship of his/her father IRR
53 EnviroTO : Citizenship is not always determined by where you are born. Some countries only give citizenship to people born of citizens. Every country gets to mak
54 RCS763AV : I think that if you are in international airspace you get the nationality from the airline your are flying. eg: if a baby is born on a Varig flight fr
55 Aeroflot777 : FLY2LIM, Starlionblue, Russia and the US do allow dual citizenship. She has both an American passport and a Russian one. I just applied for an America
56 TommyBoy : You're an illegal alien no matter where you are....
57 Post contains images FLY2LIM : Starlion, you got me there. I did not finish my statement (my mistake). I meant to say that she would have to renounce US citizenship if she wanted t
58 Lincoln : Uggh, if true, that would be painful when dealing with (US) financial institutions and others that use place of birth as a verification: Customer Ser
59 Starlionblue : Lots of lying mothers out there. You mean the mother. You just contradicted yourself. The US does respect reciprocity, as you point out in the last s
60 Post contains images Airsicknessbag : Tsk, the thing is settled since reply 24, and here we are at reply 60… It is completely irrelevant whether you’re born in Enid/Oklahoma, aboard th
61 Centrair : My grandfather was born on a ship between Naples, Italy and New York with a final destination of Chicago. This was back in 1907 but his birth certific
62 Elagabal : Hi Avek00, Remember: the text is accurate, yes. But it is written in lawyerese. Errm, perhaps I'm the one confused here, but I think you should read w
63 Post contains images Elagabal : PS - My mistake above - I said B747's text was accurate initially - but as you can see I took issue with a portion of it later. I'm sorry for not havi
64 GARUDAROD : Great topic!. Ok, under this scenario, which is actually true except for the birth. A baby is born on a flight from LAX to Indonesia on a GARUDA fligh
65 B747-437B : ICAO
66 B747-437B : The context of my post deals solely with how the child is treated for the purpose of immediate action (in this case, how the child is treated upon ar
67 Avek00 : "The context of my post deals solely with how the child is treated for the purpose of immediate action (in this case, how the child is treated upon ar
68 LTBEWR : Since certain rules of ships and aircraft as to international sea/air space are similar, try this: Someone my Father knew was born on a Swedish regist
69 Elagabal : B747-437B, Avek00: Thank you both for the specifications / corrections. Guess I jumped to some conclusions myself! Good call also in quoting the sourc
70 N1120A : The US used to "encourage" people to do this, but at 21. Now the State Department take little interest in such things and just ignores all other nati
71 Starlionblue : If they are citizens of another country as well and the US, and the US does not force them to renouce their other citizenship, the US respects recipr
72 Oftwftwoab : This is incorrect. The US constitution states that anyone born in the USA is an American citizen. There are no qualifications on this at all. Janet D
73 Bearcuban12 : I seem to remember that their is a world record of over 1000 pax on a B747 flying an evac flight out of Ethiopia. During that flight a baby was born.
74 Post contains images Gearup : Born on a 707! Awesome! GU
75 MD11Engineer : Art, In the case of a child being born on LH plane, it would have German citizenship only if either on of it´s parents was German citizen at the time
76 IMatAMS : If you're born aloft, you don't get any citizenship....You'll get a frequent flyer card instead.....
77 N1120A : Actually, it does. They don't respect reciprocity, rather they ignore the conditions surrounding it. Whereas in France you can offically hold dual ci
78 FLY2LIM : You are mistaken. As you noted earlier, the US basically ignores anything else besides your American citizenship. If I'm not mistaken, you (N1120A) a
79 Starlionblue : Yes but what exactly is the difference. As FLY2LIM states, the difference between doing it officially and just doing it seems rather insignificant.
80 Lamedianaranja : So many replies and nowhere the limits to fly for expectant mothers! I'm always surprised when I see a big belly going on board and check the rules ag
81 Danialanwar : That does not apply in all countries. Nationality is not necessarily determined by place of birth in all countries. I have a friend couple, both Sing
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