Korean Nationality Status Check Guideline
1. How to Know Whether You Have Korean Citizenship
Regardless of your birthplace and current citizenship, if your father was a Korean citizen or a Permanent Resident of Australia, Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, South Africa, UK, or US at the time of your birth, you are more than likely to hold Korean citizenship. It is urgent to verify your Korean citizenship status by contacting the Korean Embassy/Consulate in your respective country.
- If it’s determined that you DO carry Korean citizenship, you will have to enter the country through a Korean passport. Please discuss the matter with the Korean Embassy/Consulate about the procedures of obtaining a Korean passport. If you wish to renounce your Korean citizenship and enter Korea through the passport of your current citizenship, you will have to file a Nationality Renunciation Report to the Korean Embassy/Consulate under certain criteria.
- If it is determined that you DO NOT carry Korean citizenship, please consult with the Korean Embassy/Consulate about obtaining one of two visas: E2 or F-4 (Overseas Korean).
2. Retain/Renounce Your Korean Citizenship
If you do have Korean Citizenship, you have the option of either retaining or renouncing your Korean citizenship. If you choose to retain it, you can enter on a Korean passport. If you have renounced your citizenship, you will have to arrange to enter Korea through an E2 or F-4 visa. Please check below on the criteria on how to renounce your citizenship.
- Females: Before turning the age of 22, you have the option to keep or renounce your Korean citizenship. If you keep your citizenship, you will have to enter Korea with a Korean passport. If you choose to renounce your Korean citizenship, you will have to enter Korea with a passport from your respective country of residence and obtain either an E2 or F-4 visa.
- Males: By March 31st of the year you turn 18, you have the option to keep or renounce your Korean citizenship. Once the date has passed, you will NOT be eligible to file in the Korean Nationality Renunciation Report unless you have fulfilled your Korean Military Service or have been waived from serving in the military. If you have neither fulfilled your Korean Military Service nor received a waiver, you will be subject to Korean Military Service at any time upon arrival.