Children born to U.S. troops or government employees overseas will no longer be automatically considered as U.S. citizens, the Trump administration has said.
The change was announced today, according to a policy alert released by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
The alert stated that the USCIS aims to better clarify the difference between “U.S. residence and physical presence.”
Historically, children born to U.S. citizens were automatically granted citizenship because they were considered “residing in the United States,” under Immigration and Nationality Act 320.
However, the policy has changed so that even those born in U.S. military hospitals and diplomatic facilities will no longer be considered as residing in the U.S.
“The policy change explains that we will not consider children who live abroad with their parents to be residing in the United States even if their parents are U.S. government employees or U.S. service members stationed outside of the United States, and as a result, these children will no longer be considered to have acquired citizenship automatically,” USCIS spokesperson Meredith Parker told Task & Purpose on Wednesday, according to Business Insider.
“For them to obtain a Certificate of Citizenship, their U.S. citizen parent must apply for citizenship on their behalf,” she said.
As the children will be considered to be residing outside of the U.S., they will be required to apply for naturalization and will be allowed to do so while living abroad. This must be done before the child’s 18th birthday.
Previously, Donald Trump also voiced his intent to abolish birthright citizenship. Birthright citizenship is protected under the 14th amendment, which guarantees citizenship to everyone born in the U.S. to parents who are citizens of another country.