Press Releases

Nadler and Collins Laud Senate Passage of Bipartisan Immigration Fix for Children of Military and Civil Servants

Washington, March 5, 2020

Washington, D.C. –Today, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) and Ranking Member Doug Collins (R-GA) praised the Senate passage of H.R. 4803, theCitizenship for Children of Military Members and Civil Servants Act,bipartisan legislation introduced by the Chairman and Ranking Member that fixes a problem in current citizenship laws that makes it difficult for children born abroad—and who are residing abroad because of a parent's service commitment—to establish residency for purposes of acquiring U.S. citizenship. The bill would ease those requirements, providing peace of mind to those who have dedicated their careers to serving our country in the U.S. armed forces or in other federal government positions.

“With today’s Senate passage of the Citizenship for Children of Military Members and Civil Servants Act, Congress has demonstrated its commitment to ensuring those who serve overseas in our U.S. armed forces and in federal government positions are able to fulfill their duties without unnecessary burdens or distractions,” said Chairman Nadler. “I want to thank Senator Duckworth for all her help in getting this bill passed, as well as Ranking Member Collins for his support, and I hope to see this important legislation signed into law.”

“The brave men and women serving our country overseas as part of the military or as civil servants should not have any doubts about their children's citizenship. With the passage of the Citizenship for Children of Military Members and Civil Servants Act, these families will no longer have to worry about enduring mountains of paperwork and jumping through bureaucratic hoops simply because their child was born outside the U.S. I appreciate the leadership of Chairman Nadler and SenatorIsakson on this legislation, and I look forward to seeing President Trump sign this bill,” said Ranking Member Collins.

Under the Immigration and Nationality Act, certain children who did not derive citizenship at birth will automatically acquire citizenship when certain conditions are met, including that they reside in the United States in the legal and physical custody of a citizen parent. This bill would ensure that children of U.S. Armed Forces members and U.S. Government personnel are not disadvantaged merely because their parents’ service to our country requires them to be deployed abroad. The Citizenship for Children of Military Members and Civil Servants Act would make a technical change to Section 320 to clarify that these children satisfy the residency requirement even while abroad.