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  1. #1
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    Default My naturalization journey - Part one

    If you are a foreign woman married to a Dominican man, the following documents have to be handed in at the Ministry of Interior and Police in the capital to start the citizenship process.
    1. 4 2x2 photos: Easy to do, cost RD$100
    2. The application form. Download off the internet, easy to complete, and then pay RD$1500 when you hand it in.
    3. Letter asking to be a citizen in Spanish. Easy to do, cost 0.
    4. Copies of husband’s birth certificate – has to be an inextensa version, not just an extracta de acta. Cost around RD$700. No older than 6 months.
    5. Copy of marriage certificate – inextensa RD$700. No older than 6 months.
    6. Colour copy of first 3 pages of passport and colour copy of husband’s cedula.
    7. Copy of birth certificate, apostilled and translated. Cost of apostilled birth cert from England and getting it sent here was around RD$4500. Please note, this must not be more than 6 months old. I had to do mine twice. I used a fabulous lady for translation, Olga, [email protected]. I scanned the certificate and apostille, she translated and stamped it and then I met her in the capital and we went to the Procuraduria for the official legalized stamp, Cost RD$330 for the stamp, she didn’t charge me for translation as loves the blog, but I think is usually RD$800 a page – mine was two pages.
    8. Receipt from national newspaper for announcement of citizenship. I did mine at Listin Diario office near Caribe Tour in the capital. They are very efficient, answer emails and open till 8pm at night. Cost was RD$1804 pesos.

    Four copies of everything plus the original, cost of copying around RD$300.

    So we went to Procuraduria to have the translation stamped, having paid at Ban Reservas, that took no time at all as Olga “knows” people so we queue jumped. Then off to the Ministry of Interior and Police in the Huacalito. Remember to wear closed shoes and short or long sleeves – not sleeveless. Sometimes they ignore the rules but who knows. Went to 13th floor, check each lift before you enter as they all go to different floors. Then into naturalization where man checked paperwork – and everything came to a grinding halt. I thought it was all too easy. My name on my birth certificate is not the same as the name on my marriage certificate as I was married and divorced before marrying present husband – as I am sure were many. Now, before marrying, I had to provide original marriage certificate and divorce certificate, and also when getting residency. Both the Junta Central Electoral and Migracion were happy enough and I have residency and a marriage certificate to prove it. But Mr Jobsworth at Interior and Police insisted I provide an apostilled copy of my previous marriage certificate and my divorce papers. I have the originals and he told me just to go to the British embassy and get them to authenticate them. I told him they wouldn’t and tried to explain Hague convention and apostilles to him but he wasn’t having it. Off to British Embassy who of course said it had to be apostilled in the UK so back to the drawing board. Hopefully I will get the apostilled version of old marriage cert in the new year, we will then have to redo my husband’s birth cert and our marriage cert as they will be over 6 months old by then, and then I will try again.
    Mr Jobsworth made a point of telling me that my naturalization will be in the name on my birth certificate, which begs the question why the hell they proof as to why my name changed, so they take no notice of the fact I am married to a Dominican and have been using his name for 10 years. It is also the name on my residency and my UK passport. I decided not to argue the point, as once I am Dominican it is easy to change, you just change it like every Dominican who marries does.
    So cost so far is around RD$9,000. I haven’t paid the RD$1500 yet as papers not deposited. You can add on cost of Caribe tours to capital to that and the odd taxi.

    Recommendations so far:

    1. You do not need a lawyer however Olga was great at translating and useful as knew where all the places were. Fluent in English and Spanish and expedited things at the Procuraduria.
    2. It doesn’t take much time to get the paperwork together, but remember the 6 month rule.
    3. Wear the right clothes to the Ministry in case there is a Jobsworth on the door.
    4. If the name on your marriage cert is different to the name on your birth cert then take reasons why, apostilled and translated.
    5. If you can’t sort the national paper announcement where you are, then go to Listin Diario behind Caribe tours.

  2. #2
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    Great post. I had the same experience/problem with my first temporary residency. I started the process in my country of origin, everything was notarized, authenticated, apostilled and translated into Spanish - cost me much more than yours did I'm sorry to say.

    Got a call from immigration in Santo Domingo - thinking they were calling to say my residency was ready. Not. It was who was the name on my birth certificate, passport, etc. Well I have been married twice so had to show maiden name to first marriage, divorce papers from first marriage, marriage certificate for 2nd marriage, divorce papers from second marriage, and then translated into Spanish. Done. And finally all paperwork was in order. What an ordeal! Good luck with your process.

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  4. #3
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    I was married in Imbert. I believe the marriage certificate in extensa printed in Imbert has to be certified in Santiago. In other words one more step to be added... certification of marriage certificate?
    The 5 months rule is puzzling for birth certificate. I have had the same birth for many years (!). So I come to the DR, get married, cannot apply for citizenship for 6 months but the papers i need from home cannot be older than 6 months. ok, maybe my embassy can do this.
    Great post, informative, detailed and useful! Here is to hoping they won't change the rules within the next 5 months!

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  6. #4
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    I always have to smile about documents like birth certificates that can be no more than 6 months old. As if your birth would change if the certificate was older than 6 months.

  7. #5
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    Part two

    Mother got copy of first marriage certificate, sent to be apostilled and sent by DHL by the Foreign and Commonwealth office with 2 day delivery - supposedly. The certificate went from London Heathrow to East Midlands airport in the UK. Then to Barbados. Then Venezuela, then Panama, back to Venezuela then Santo Domingo and then took 3 days from Santo Domingo to Santiago (by donkey I assume). Scanned the document to Olga for translation and a week later off again to get it legalized at the Procuraduria and hand my documents in again. It was not to be. There were 1,000 people at the Procuraduria so Olga chatted to her mate there who said we could queue jump, and off to the bank to pay for the stamp. The system was down. Ban Reservas said it was the Procuraduria system down and the Procuraduria said it was the bank system down. Whatever. Outside the bank were hundreds waiting to pay and no one knew how long whoever's system it was would be down for, and whether it would be hours or days. It was obvious there was no way anything would be stamped that day. Off to the Ministry of Interior and Police to check whether Olga could hand in the papers for me - which she could - why didn't I think of that earlier? Interestingly the citizenship office was full of foreigners - German, French, Italian, all who were opting for citizenship. Olga went 2 days later, papers handed in and all accepted. The interview is supposed to be 2 weeks after you hand your papers in - my date is early April. Dominican two weeks.

    Lessons from this trip - get some one else to hand the papers in for you. Just put them on Caribe Tours and you sit at home relaxing while some one else goes through all the running around, hanging around and frustration.

    Matilda

  8. #6
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    One question : why was your marriage cert. 700? The extract should be 300 and the extended version 400 pesos. That's what I paid last week.

  9. #7
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    Default Germans too...?

    Wondering if the Germans know that they will loose their German citizenship when they take on another one.


    Quote Originally Posted by Matilda View Post
    Part two

    Mother got copy of first marriage certificate, sent to be apostilled and sent by DHL by the Foreign and Commonwealth office with 2 day delivery - supposedly. The certificate went from London Heathrow to East Midlands airport in the UK. Then to Barbados. Then Venezuela, then Panama, back to Venezuela then Santo Domingo and then took 3 days from Santo Domingo to Santiago (by donkey I assume). Scanned the document to Olga for translation and a week later off again to get it legalized at the Procuraduria and hand my documents in again. It was not to be. There were 1,000 people at the Procuraduria so Olga chatted to her mate there who said we could queue jump, and off to the bank to pay for the stamp. The system was down. Ban Reservas said it was the Procuraduria system down and the Procuraduria said it was the bank system down. Whatever. Outside the bank were hundreds waiting to pay and no one knew how long whoever's system it was would be down for, and whether it would be hours or days. It was obvious there was no way anything would be stamped that day. Off to the Ministry of Interior and Police to check whether Olga could hand in the papers for me - which she could - why didn't I think of that earlier? Interestingly the citizenship office was full of foreigners - German, French, Italian, all who were opting for citizenship. Olga went 2 days later, papers handed in and all accepted. The interview is supposed to be 2 weeks after you hand your papers in - my date is early April. Dominican two weeks.

    Lessons from this trip - get some one else to hand the papers in for you. Just put them on Caribe Tours and you sit at home relaxing while some one else goes through all the running around, hanging around and frustration.

    Matilda

  10. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mauricio View Post
    One question : why was your marriage cert. 700? The extract should be 300 and the extended version 400 pesos. That's what I paid last week.
    Sorry that was including the cost of the legalization stamp.

    Matilda

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  12. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by webmacon View Post
    Wondering if the Germans know that they will loose their German citizenship when they take on another one.
    I would assume so. I suppose if they never want to go back there, and don't want to travel they maybe they don't mind?

    Matilda

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  14. #10
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    Next part was the interview. Date was set for April 2nd and I checked and was surprised to see that was the Thursday of Easter Week which would make getting out of Santo Domingo on the bus horrid. The Ministry obviously thought the same thing and they called me to say they were shut that day and had not realised when they made the appointment. They rescheduled for March 4 when I was due to be in the capital anyway. Result. Hey ho the day before they called again and said no interviews on March 4 and it would be now March 9th, yesterday. Off I went again expecting them to call and change it again. They didn't. Arrived at the Ministry at 1.45 for 2pm appointment, had fingerprints taken and waited till 2.45 with fellow interviewees: A Columbian couple and their lawyer (no idea why on earth you need a lawyer for this), a Russian girl, and a Venezuelan man. The interviews lasted all of 5 minutes, done by a very ample chested, cleavage flaunting lawyer. She asked 8 questions out of the the 48 options they give you, told me I was approved as was everyone apart from the Russian who did not speak Spanish and thought there would be an interpreter. It was explained that I would now be checked by the DNI, DNCD, and Interpol in your home country. I should return every 3 months to check how many of the tests have been completed - the average time is 10 months for all 3. I asked if I could telephone and apparently you cannot - but I will try that route first. Once all the checks are in, pay RD$5,000 and get your date for the swearing in which is at 9.45 am on the third Thursday of each month - formal attire required. All very painless and cost this trip was only the bus fare there and back. Interestingly the Venezuelan man was asked to produce his residency and passport and I was only asked for passport - so the residency for men married to Dominican women still stands. If anyone wants any info please do feel free to pm me.

    Matilda

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