The procedure of issuing a certificate of a Slovak living abroad

Who can apply for a certificate of a Slovak living abroad

According to Act no. 474/2005 Coll. is a Slovak living abroad „a person who does not have a permanent residence in the territory of the Slovak Republic and either

  1. Is a citizen of the Slovak Republic, or
  2. Is not a citizen of the Slovak Republic but keeps the national awareness , and they or their ancestor in the direct lineage has the Slovak nationality.

National awareness represents active expressions of commitment to the Slovak nation and to the values that represent the Slovak language, Slovak cultural heritage and traditions.

Application for recognition of the status of a Slovak living abroad

The application is submitted on a form. The application is required to be submitted in person. If submitted in the Slovak Republic, it is submitted at the address ÚSZŽ, Palisády 29/A, 817 80 Bratislava 15. It is, however, possible to submit it at the representative office in the country of residence.

The application can be submitted either at the Office for Slovaks living abroad, or abroad at the representative office or at the consular office of the Slovak Republicin the state in which the applicant resides.

Conditions for issuing a certificate of a Slovak living abroad

Conditions for issuing a certificate are listed at the  § 7 of the Act.  

The applicant has to:

  1. Fulfill the conditions according to § 2 letter a) first article or second article, ie. definition of who is a Slovak living abroad, ie. (i) the person must not have a permanent residence in the Slovak Republic, (ii) they are either a citizen or (iii) they are not a citizen of the Slovak Republic and retain the national awareness, and they or their ancestor in the direct lineage have Slovak nationality. Please note that the validity of the certificate expires on the day of the registration of the certificate holder for permanent residence in the territory of the Slovak Republic or on the day of the permission of the permanent residence in the territory of the Slovak Republic.
  2. Could not be lawfully convicted of an intentional criminal offense or for an act that is an intentional criminal offense under the laws of the Slovak Republic. Integrity shall be proved by the extract from the criminal record or a similar certificate issued by the competent authority of the country of which the applicant is a citizen or in which the applicant resides and shall not be more than three months old. An extract from the criminal record or other document issued by the competent authorities of the country must prove the integrity of the entire territory of the country which issued the document.
  3. Does not perform activities dertimental to the interests of the Slovak Republic.

Attachments to the appication for recognition of the status of a Slovak living abroad

The above conditions must be demonstrated/substantiated by the following documents:

National awareness is proved by a statement of the applicant on the results of their public activities , which prove their national awareness , or by written testimony of an expatriate organization operating in their place of residence and, if not, by written testimony of at least two Slovaks living abroad in the same country as the applicant.

„National awareness is also demonstrated by mastering the Slovak language, which the applicant proves by substantiating the confirmation from the relevant school about attending the school with the Slovak language as the language of instruction or a school report issued by a school with the Slovak language as the language of instruction; in such a case, it is not necessary to submit written evidence issued by the relevant expatriate organization. The document proving the applicant´s national awareness must not be older than 6 months; this does not apply if the applicant demonstrates the national awareness by a school report.“ (source:

Slovak nationality is proved by an official document confirming this fact, which is in particular a birth certificate or a baptismal certificate, extract from the registry, certificate of citizenship or certificate of the permanent residence of the applicant, if it contains a record of nationality under the law of the country whose authority issued the certificate, and these data cannot be obtained from public administration information systems according to § 1 par. 3 of Act no. 177/2018 Coll. on certain measures to reduce administrative burdens through the use of public administration information systems and on the amendment of certain laws (the Anti-Beaurocracy Act), as amended. (Note: Applicants from Serbia prove their Slovak nationality by a registration document, e.g. birth certificate, etc., which contains information on the Slovak nationality only if this registration document is issued before January 1st, 2019, i.e. before the entry into effectiveness of the Registration Act in Serbia (Article 45a). In the case of submission of a registration document certifying/confirming the Slovak nationality by inspecting the register of births, ÚSŽZ will accept the registration of the party from which the certificate/confirmation is based and the document bound in this way is certified in the form of „APOSTILLE“ and officially translated into the Slovak language by the bullet procedure above. source:

The application is further accompanied by:

  • Two actual identical coloured photographies of the applicant with the dimensions of 3,5 x 4,5 cm (photographies made in the photoboots are not accepted by ÚSŽZ)
  • A photocopy of part of the applicant´s valid travel document or identity document with personal data, photograph, number, serial number of the document and its validity in order to verify the accuracy of the applicant´s personal data provided in the application; the original document must be submitted for inspection to verify compliance.
  • Birth certificate
  • Birth certificates of ancestors of the applicant in the direct lineage until the birth certificate of an ancestor, until who the applicant proves their Slovak nationality
  • A photocopy of a certificate or a license of the foreign Slovak of the applicant´s ancestor/descendant in the direct lineage in case it has been issued.

What must foreign public documents contain?

Foreign public documents attached to the application for the issue of a certificate of a Slovak living abroad must be verified  by an apostille clause, or superlegalized. Certification clauses must not be older than 6 months.

Exceptions, where an „APOSTILLE“ certificare or legalization/superlegalization is not required, are those public documents which are issued by an authority of a Member Country of the European Union, and the calculation of which is set out in Regulation 2016/1191 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 July 2016 on the promotion of free movement of citizens by simplifying the requirements for the submission of certain authentic instruments in the European Union and amending Regulation (EU) No 1095/2010 1024/2012.

Documents issued in other than the Slovak or Czech languages must be completely officially translated.

„ÚSŽZ accepts only such an official translation which is issued by court translator of the applicant´s home country which is entered in the relevant home state register or which is made by a court translator registered by the Ministry of Justice of the Slovak Republic. The eligibility of a certified translator of the home country will be certified to the applicant of the home country in the form of „APOSTILLE“ (for Hague Convention countries) or legalization/superlegalization (for other countries), while the certification clauses must not be older than 6 months. Listed verifications are not required if the eligibility of a certified translator of the home country is confirmed for the ÚSŽZ by relevant representative office of the Slovak Republic abroad on the cover letter by which the applicant submits the application to the ÚSŽZ.“ (source: ÚSŽZ)

Procedure for issuing a certificate for a Slovak living abroad

The Office for Slovaks living abroad may summon the applicant in order to provide further information, for example, as stated on the Office´s website „in order to ascertain the applicant´s national awareness/cultural identity, personal ties and relationships to the Slovak nation, knowledge of Slovak traditions.“

Deadline for issuing a certificate of a Slovak living abroad

The Office for Slovaks living abroad has 60 days from the date of delivery of the complete application to assess and decide.

The Office for Slovaks living abroad may, however, also suspend the proceedings in accordance with Section 29 of the Administrative Procedure Code. The suspension of the procedure for issuing the certificate of a Slovak living abroad shall be delivered by the official correspondence address of the applicant stated in the application and, if the applicant does not state it, to the address of the applicant´s permanent residence.

Certificate of a Slovak living abroad

A certificate issued to an applicant over the age of 18 is valid indefinitely (Series A).

Minor applicants have a series D certificate which has limited validity (3, 5 years or up to 18 years of age).

The loss, theft, destruction or damage of the certificate must be reported to the Office.

The certificate of a Slovak living abroad is valid only on the territory of Slovakia and only together with the identity card, the data of which agree with the data in the certificate.

If the applicant requests so, the Office shall deliver the certificate to them through the embassy at the applicant’s place of residence.

Fee for issuing a certificate of a Slovak living abroad

According to Act no. 145/1995 Coll. on administrative fees, the fees are as follows:

  • for an application for a certificate of a Slovak living abroad: EUR 10,
  • for issuing a certificate of a Slovak living abroad as compensation for a lost, destroyed or damaged certificate: EUR 20,
  • for issuing a new certificate to a Slovak living abroad in case of registration of amendments: EUR 10.

The fees are the same no matter where the application is submitted.

Temporary residence and Slovak citizenship of a Slovak living abroad

On the basis of the issued certificate on the status of a Slovak living abroad, a citizen of a country not belonging to the European Union may apply for a temporary residence permit of a Slovak living abroad. Subsequently, if they have a continuous residence in the territory of the Slovak Republic for at least three years immediately preceding the submission of the application, they may apply for the granting of citizenship of the Slovak Republic.


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