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Hungarian citizenship is inherited by birth (ius sangui), thus the children of Hungarian citizens are generally also eligible to become Hungarian citizens. Children born prior to 1957 can only inherit Hungarian citizenship from their paternal side, but those born after 1957 can inherit from either.
The assessment of the citizenship is done exclusively by the Citizenship Department of the Ministry of the Interior in Budapest. Applications lodged in New Zealand need to be submitted through the Consulate-General in Wellington or the Consulate in Auckland to the Hungarian Embassy in Canberra, Australia, who send it by diplomatic courier to the Ministry in Hungary.
First-time applications submitted from New Zealand generally take 10-12 months.
All applicants of Hungarian descent who do not have one of the three documents that undeniably prove their Hungarian citizenship – i.e. a valid passport, a valid Hungarian personal ID card, or a current Citizenship Certificate (issued from Hungary within the last 12 months) – or those who left Hungary prior to 1 January 1972 and are not in possession of a Hungarian Passport issued thereafter have to undergo a citizenship assessment by filling in and signing the citizenship application form. This form, which is in Hungarian, can be downloaded here..(PDF)
The documents that need to be attached to the form are:
Note: A Hungarian passport can be issued only to Hungarians whose births (and marriages, etc where applicable) are registered in Hungary.
Only the full versions and originals of all certificates are accepted. (The Consulate–General or Consulate can prepare a certified true copy of an original document in exceptional circumstances.)
The Hungarian authorities require all original New Zealand documents to be authenticated. Birth, marriage and death certificates, and divorce and change of name documents issued in New Zealand require Apostille Certification before they can be registered in Hungary. If the original document bears the round seal of the Registrar of Births, Deaths and Marriages (or the Registrar-General), you can send it straight to the Authentication Unit, Department of Internal Affairs, PO Box 805, Wellington 6140. (Some older documents do not have either of these seals and must be notarised first, or in fact a cheaper option is to order new certificates from Births, Deaths and Marriages and asking that they be sent directly to the Authentication Unit for an Apostille Certificate before being sent to you.) You can find detailed information about this the authentication process at Department of Internal Affairs website.
All non-Hungarian documents submitted with an application, including Apostille Certificates, must be translated into Hungarian. The Consulate-General can assist with such translations. All translations into Hungarian submitted from New Zealand require verification by the Embassy in Canberra.
The applicant must register their own birth, all their marriages and divorces and any name changes.
It should be noted that all the forms need to be completed in Hungarian as the officials handling them do not necessarily speak English. Family names should be written in block letters. In the case of those of Hungarian origin (including children) the family name should precede the first name, e.g. TÓTH Stephen, but in the case of the non-Hungarians, names should be written as we write them in English, e.g. Jane TÓTH. Things like "New Zealand" need to be written as "Új-Zéland", and "New Zealander" as "új-zélandi". All dates should be written in the order of year-month-day eg. 2012-01-15. NOTE: all forms need to be signed by the applicant(s) in front of someone (usually an Honorary Consul) authorised to witness their signing.
Those applying for citizenship through the Consulate-General in Wellington can obtain assistance from the Consul-General to fill in the forms.
If yours is a first-time application, you will first need to submit a citizenship application. Once your application has been processed and approved in Budapest, you will receive a Citizenship Certificate, with which you will then be able to apply for a biometric passport at the next available opportunity. Your Citizenship Certificate together with any Hungarian registration documents will be sent from Budapest to the Embassy from where they will be posted directly to you. The process takes about 9-12 months and costs anywhere from about NZD400 to NZD1500, depending on the complexity of your application.
Consular fees apply in all cases. This information is obtainable from your nearest consulate.
Click Hungary's consular representations in New Zealand for contact details.
© (1998–2012) Consulate–General of the Republic of Hungary in New Zealand
Last modified: 12 August 2012