Changing citizenship is common here in the Philippines considering some of our countrymen are opting to stay in a different country due to work or family. However, no matter how good of a life they must have been living in a different country, the home is still where the heart is. For the former Filipino citizens who wants to again be a citizen of the Philippines but doesn’t want to give up their Canadian citizenship, the Philippines government signed a law that allows former Filipino citizens to enjoy the benefits of being a citizen of both countries; dual citizenship.
The Philippines Dual Citizenship or the Citizenship Retention Act of 2003 (Republic Act 9225) allows natural-born Filipino citizens who have been a naturalized citizen of another country to regain or retain benefits and privileges as a Filipino citizen. This law enables former Filipinos who are willing to contribute to the development of the country.
Right and Privileges
- Right to have a Philippine passport
- Right to stay and live in the Philippines, visa-free and for an indefinite period of time
- Right to practice profession
- Right to have a business such as investing in areas or industry that is only or partially allowable to Filipino citizens or Philippine companies
- Right to vote in Philippine election
- Right to have a real property beyond limits prescribed for former citizens
- Right to be appointed or elected public office under certain conditions
There are no disadvantages in acquiring a dual citizenship. Applying for dual citizenship is easy and inexpensive and not to mention quick. If you are interested in doing so you just have to pass basic documents that prove that you are a natural-born Filipino and proof that you are naturalized foreign citizen such as;
- Birth certificate
- Baptismal certificate
- Philippine passport or any Philippine government-issued document 9
- Certificate of naturalization or citizenship card
For people who are concerned with taxation, the Republic Act of 9225 states that the definition of ‘taxable income’ of Philippine citizens residing overseas including overseas Filipino workers will be limited to all income earned ‘from all sources within the Philippines’. Therefore, according to this, Filipinos of dual citizenship who are considered to be ‘residing outside of the Philippines’ shall be exempted from paying tax on their income that was earned abroad. To add to this, if an individual is earning income from both countries, the tax will only be limited to the income that you’ve earned within the country you earned it from.
Having a citizenship with both Canada and Philippines is considered beneficial considering that you get to benefit from being a citizen of both countries. Besides having small inconveniences such as having two passports for two countries that would cause confusion and delay or sometimes even when it comes to taxation wherein it could create false apprehension, there are no real disadvantage in having a dual citizenship.