Case Result: Consular Report of Birth Abroad for Child of US Citizen (Client from Dominican Republic)

DISCLAIMER: case results are not meant as legal advice or a guarantee as to any specific outcome.

I assisted my client, a United States Citizen from the Dominican Republic, in completing the Consular Report of Birth Abroad for his child.

Under US immigration law, a child who is born in their home country to a US citizen parent is able to acquire citizenship if some requirements are met. Usually, the first step is for parents to apply for a Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA) document as proof that the child is indeed a United States Citizen. In turn, the CRBA is used for the child to get a US passport and be able to travel to the U.S.

There are certain categories under the CRBA:

  • A child born out of wedlock to a U.S. citizen mother;
  • A child born out of wedlock to a U.S. citizen father;
  • A child born in wedlock to two U.S. citizens; and
  • A child born in wedlock to one U.S. citizen and one non-U.S. citizen.

The one applicable to this particular client was “A child born out of wedlock to a U.S. citizen father.”  That classification has its own set of requirements:

  • The father must have been a U.S. citizen at the time of the child’s birth;
  • The father must have been physically in the U.S. for five years, and two of those years took place after the father was of age fourteen;
  • The father must agree to provide financial support in writing until the child reaches age 18; and
  • The father must acknowledge paternity.

My client came to me with a great sense of frustration: He had completed other immigration processes that did not apply to him or to his daughter, and incurred great financial costs and loss of time. For example, he had completed an N-600K, Application for Citizenship and Issuance of Certificate Under Section 322, which had been denied since he did not satisfy the requirement of the child residing in his physical custody. He was anxious to finally be able to better provide for his daughter and wished for her to be able to visit the United States and get the opportunity to meet and create a relationship with her siblings.

One of the issues, in this case, was the long gap in years between the time of the client’s daughter’s birth, and adding his name to her birth certificate (i.e. legally recognizing his daughter). My approach was to assist him in drafting a declaration and putting together evidence in his possession that would explain those circumstances. Other requirements entailed proving the blood relationship with clear and convincing evidence, where the results of a DNA test were also provided.

In January of 2022, I was able to schedule a Report of Birth Abroad interview with the U.S. Embassy in Santo Domingo for March of 2022 – The client, his daughter, and the daughter’s mother would attend this appointment. Before the client departed for the Dominican Republic, we met and went over every piece of documentation he would take with him to the Dominican Republic. The client attended the interview and was told that prior to issuing a decision, the Embassy needed to confirm the DNA results.

A few days later, because we had not heard back from the Embassy, I contacted the Consular Communications Unit, Consular U.S. Embassy, Santo Domingo, and they responded promptly indicating that the client’s CRBA case was approved and that the client’s daughter should receive the CRBA and passport in 3-6 weeks.