§58c StbG 1985

Article (§) 58c StbG 1985 is a amended provision in the Austrian Citizenship Act 1985 that was announced in September 2019, and which will enter into force in September 2020.

Under the amended Article 58c:

  • Citizens of the successor state of the former Austro-Hungarian monarchy or those who were stateless but with their main residence in federal territory prior to 15 May 1955 who were forced to flee as a result of persecution by, or fear of persecution by bodies of the NSDAP (formal name of the Nazi party) or by authorities of the Third Reich, or who were persecuted or feared persecution by virtue of their support for the Democratic Republic of Austria are able to acquire Austrian citizenship by submission of a written notification. (para. 1)
  • The descendants of such persons may make such an application by submission of a written notification, supported by appropriate documentation and certificates (e.g. birth certificates) that demonstrate that they are direct descendants of someone who is or was eligible to retake Austrian citizenship. (para. 1a)
  • The provision for descendants (Nachkommen) is extended to adopted children, subject to their having been adopted prior to reaching the age of majority. (para. 1b)
  • There are no charges for the notification, the decision or submission of documents in relation to this procedure (e.g. certificates, documents relating to personal status (e.g. birth, nationality, marriage and death certificates and translations thereof) (para. 4)
  • The authorities may request that the Nationalfonds der Republik Österreich (in English) (English: National Fund of the Republic of Austria for Victims of National Socialism) assists in an expert capacity in the assessment of the validity of such an application. Under such circumstances the National Fund is authorised to submit personal information including sensitive information to both the applicant and the authority (para. 5)


Under certain circumstances a naturalisation process requires the applicant to go through a temporary period of statelessness. In taking Austrian citizenship, this is only the case when naturalisation from a third country citizenship (e.g. Russian citizenship). In that case the renunciation process takes place before the conferring of the new citizenship and the applicant is stateless (in the case of my wife for approx. six weeks). Provisions in Austrian law cover the granting of citizenship to children born while the mother of the children is stateless.

third country citizenship

EU law refers to “Member States” (Mitgliedsstaaten) and “third country states” (Drittstaaten). A third country is any non-EU Member State (e.g. the United Kingdom after Brexit or the Russian Federation). There are stricter and longer criteria for naturalisation by third-country citizens, although mitigating circumstance apply for those naturalising as the spouses (in an intact marriage) of Austrian citizens.