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How to Get Croatian Citizenship

The path to Croatian citizenship can feel a lot like a wild goose chase. This coveted status is often reserved for those with Croatian heritage or those who marry a Croatian citizen, and even then, the journey is often a lengthy one filled with unexpected road blocks.

If you’re itching to become a Croatian citizen, or are curious to learn more about the process, you’re in the right place. In this article, we will help clear up some of the most common questions about acquiring Croatian citizenship including: 

  1. What are the benefits of becoming a Croatian citizen
  2. Who qualifies to apply for Croatian citizenship
  3. How to apply for Croatian citizenship
  4. How to get help with your Croatian citizenship application

We’ll also be sharing how CitizenHR, a new Croatian citizenship calculator app, can help make the entire process a breeze and get you on the right track to citizenship in no time.

Want to find out if you qualify for citizenship?

How to Get Croatian Citizenship: All the Answers You Need

What are the benefits of becoming a Croatian citizen

Croatia is seeing an increasing number of visitors year after year, and many of them are choosing to come for more than just their annual holiday. Descendants of Croatian grandparents living abroad and even digital nomads are seeking out ways to stay in the country longer. And with the recent reduction in requirements needed for obtaining Croatian citizenship, there has been no better time to get your hands on a Croatian passport.

Let’s look into some of the benefits of becoming a Croatian citizen.

  • You can live and work legally not only in Croatia, but also the European Union
  • Citizens of Croatia (and the EU) are free to travel anywhere in the European Union without restrictions
  • Citizens have an easier time purchasing real estate and getting approved for loans
  • Croatian citizens have access to quality and safe medical treatment while living in Croatia
  • Citizens can also take advantage of Croatia’s safe environment for raising a family or even retirement

Now that we’ve covered the perks of holding Croatian citizenship, let’s go over who can apply for it.

Who qualifies to apply for citizenship

Simply put, anyone with family ties to Croatia and those who are married to a Croatian citizen can apply for Croatian citizenship. There are, however, certain rules and other fine details that must be met in both situations. 

Luckily, though, the government recently lifted the requirement to pass the Croatian language and culture test for those applying based on lineage, making the application process much more simple.

For individuals who do not have family ties to Croatia, it may be possible to obtain citizenship under the following circumstances:

  • Naturalization – something to consider long and hard as you will be required to surrender your current citizenship and replace it with Croatian citizenship.
  • Re-admission – you already had Croatian citizenship but voluntarily gave it up to become a citizen of another country.
  • Special interest to Croatia – reserved for extremely specific cases in which the individual in question would benefit the Republic of Croatia in some way (i.e. a foreign athlete representing Croatia in a global sporting event).
  • Treaty – the Croatian Citizenship Act allows for the possibility of acquiring Croatian citizenship based on international treaties.

If you’re unsure if you qualify for Croatian citizenship, you can find out here in just a few minutes.

How to apply for Croatian citizenship

The first step in applying for Croatian citizenship is to confirm whether or not you qualify and under what conditions. This will determine what documents you will need to provide as part of your application.

Everyone applying for Croatian citizenship must provide the following documents in addition to the official application form:

  • Completed application form
  • Curriculum Vitae (Biography) containing a short summary of your personal background and reason for applying for citizenship. Read the full list of required information on the official website of the Ministry of Foreign and European Affairs. *Please note that your biography must be written in the Croatian language.
  • Valid birth certificate that has been translated into Croatian, apostilled and notarized
  • Proof of nationality (like a passport from the country you reside in or something equivalent to a Domovnica)
  • Certified copy of a valid ID (such as a passport or driver’s license) with a clearly visible photo
  • Federal background check that is not older than six months. This document must also be translated, apostilled, and notarized.

All foreign public documents that you submit with your application must be original, translated into the Croatian language, apostilled, and notarized. It is vital to ensure that the apostille for any document submitted is not older than six months.


Depending on your circumstances, you may need to provide additional documentation to prove you are eligible for citizenship status such as:

  • Evidence that your parent (or parents) hold Croatian citizenship
  • Birth certificates, marriage certificates and/or death certificates for Croatian relatives
  • Evidence of Yugoslavian citizenship for individuals who moved from the territory of the Republic of Croatia prior to October 8th, 1991
  • Evidence of Croatian lineage
  • Evidence that you are related to someone who emigrated from Croatia
  • If applying based on special interest, proof that your citizenship will benefit the Republic of Croatia
  • Proof that you have passed the Croatian Language & Culture Test

Your particular background and situation will dictate the paperwork and documents you need to file along with your application. The CitizenHR App can help you find out the exact documents you need and connect you to certified professionals that will assist you through the process. More on that below.

Submitting your citizenship application

Your application for Croatian citizenship should be submitted in person in the country where you reside at your nearest consulate or embassy. If your legal residence is in Croatia, you can apply at MUP (Ministarstvo Unutarnjih Poslova), an administrative police station in your area.

It should be noted that not all consulates and embassies are the same “across the board”. Some requirements can vary based on where you are applying, so it is important that you contact the embassy or consulate where you plan to submit your application. 


Fees vary depending on where you apply. Each consulate and embassy have their own fees, so it is best to check with your nearest embassy.

Get Help With Your Croatian Citizenship Application Using CitizenHR

How to get Croatian citizenship using CitizenHR calculator app

Applying for Croatian citizenship is a long process that requires strict attention to details. Knowing which route to citizenship to pursue, or if you even qualify, can be extremely time consuming and confusing.

Everyone’s path to citizenship is different, and while there is a lot of information floating around online, it can be difficult to figure out exactly what you need to apply. Missing even one single element from your application can cause it to be delayed, or even worse, refused. If you want to get it right the first time around, and increase the chances of your application being approved, you will want to download the CitizenHR app.

CitizenHR is a new mobile app that helps demystify the process of becoming a Croatian citizen, no matter your background. Whether you have Croatian roots, are unsure, or know for a fact that you have no connection to Croatia, CitizenHR will help you figure out the best path to Croatian citizenship based on your personal situation. It will show you how to get Croatian citizenship by descent, lineage, naturalization, affiliation, special interest, marriage, and even re-obtain previously held Croatian citizenship.

Here’s how it works

Click this link to download the app from the App Store or from Google Play – it’s completely free to download and use!

Once it is installed, open the app and enter your email address to get started.

After entering and submitting your email address, a short questionnaire will show up. Here, you will fill in information about your age, the country you were born in, your relationship with Croatia, your ancestry, marital status, and current location. Filling out this form takes less than 60 seconds to complete, and is necessary to determine your most viable path to Croatian citizenship.

Based on your answers, CitizenHR will calculate your available paths to citizenship. Your options will automatically appear on the screen after completing the questionnaire and can include the following:

  • Descent
  • Affiliation
  • Special Interest
  • Lineage
  • Marriage
  • Re-Admission
  • Treaty
  • If no route to citizenship is available to you, the app will provide you with information about how you can get your hands on visas, including the new Croatian Digital Nomad Visa.

You can then tap on each option individually to see what documentation and requirements you need to apply for citizenship through that specific claim. This is extremely beneficial in getting information that relates to your particular situation instead of spending hours going down the Google rabbit hole on your own.

In addition to the documents you need to begin your Croatian citizenship journey, CitizenHR also provides citizenship-seekers with a network of trusted and qualified professionals. This pool of vetted experts can help collect the documents you need to prove your right to citizenship (such as birth certificates and proof of citizenship), translate and notarize your foreign documents, assist you with writing your biography in Croatian, and review your application before it is submitted.

If you live abroad and wish to apply for citizenship, you must apply at your nearest embassy or consulate. CitizenHR provides a list of Croatian embassies and consulates worldwide, along with their contact information and direct links to where you can get more information.

Croatian citizenship made easy

CitizenHR is the best tool available for those who want to get Croatian citizenship. The app helps make the journey to citizenship as smooth as possible while increasing your chances of achieving citizenship status sooner. If you haven’t already, download the app now and get one step closer to Croatian citizenship!

What happens after you get Croatian citizenship?

After acquiring citizenship, you will receive “Rješenje o primitku hrvatsko državljanstvo”, which is a formal document stating that your application for citizenship has been approved. Once you have received your this document, you will want to request the following:

  • Domovnica – certificate of nationality which proves your citizenship. You can get this document from any registry office in the Republic of Croatia.
  • Croatian Birth Certificate – even if you were not born in Croatia, you have a right to a Croatian birth certificate based on your citizenship. 
  • Passport – if you wish to obtain a Croatian passport, you can apply for one once you have your Domovnica and Croatian Birth Certificate.
  • Osobna Iskaznica – this is your legal ID (much like a State ID in the United States). If you live abroad, you don’t really need an Osobna Iskaznica, but you can apply for one if you want to. One of the benefits of having an Osobna Iskaznica is that you can use it to travel between countries in the EU in lieu of a passport.

How to Get Croatian Citizenship: Final Thoughts

As you can probably tell, getting Croatian citizenship is not as easy and straightforward as it may seem (even if you have family ties to Croatia). To make the process painless, we recommend using the CitizenHR app to get you on the right track and, if needed, enlist the help of a qualified professional who can eliminate the guesswork for you.

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