Vietnam Law & Legal Forum Magazine is your gateway to the law of Vietnam

Official Gazette

Saturday, February 4, 2023

Citizen identity cards for Viet kieu

Updated: 08:00’ - 01/01/2023
Are Viet kieu eligible for grant of Vietnamese citizen identity cards?

Viet kieu is referred to a Vietnamese person permanently residing outside the Vietnamese territory regardless of whether he/she bears the Vietnamese citizenship, the citizenship of the host country, or dual citizenships.

As per the 2008 Law on Vietnamese Citizenship (the Citizenship Law), Viet kieu may be divided into two groups:

 Overseas Vietnamese: As defined in Article 3.3 of the Citizenship Law, overseas Vietnamese are Vietnamese citizens and persons of Vietnamese origin who permanently reside in foreign countries but still hold the Vietnamese citizenship. 

 Persons of Vietnamese origin residing overseas: As defined in Article 3.4 of the Citizenship Law, persons of Vietnamese origin residing overseas are Vietnamese people who used to have the Vietnamese citizenship which had been determined at the time of their birth on the consanguinity principle, and their children and grandchildren who are permanently residing in foreign countries.   

Under Article 19 of the 2014 Law on Citizen Identification (the Citizen Identification Law), Vietnamese citizens aged full 14 years or older are eligible for grant of citizen identity cards. Under the Citizenship Law, persons bearing the Vietnamese citizenship are Vietnamese citizens.

Hence, a Viet kieu may be granted a Vietnamese citizen identity card as long as he/she bears the Vietnamese citizenship (falls into the group of overseas Vietnamese as mentioned above) and is aged full 14 years or older. 
According to Article 26 of the Citizen Identification Law, a Vietnamese citizen may apply for grant, renewal or re-grant of identity card at one of the following authorities:
  • The citizen identity management agency of the Ministry of Public Security;
  • The citizen identity management agency of the provincial-level Police Department;
  • The citizen identity management agency of the district-level Police Office;
  • A citizen identity management agency competent to carry out procedures for grant of citizen identity cards in the commune, ward, township, agency or unit where the Vietnamese citizen resides or works or at his/her place of residence in case of necessity.
An overseas Vietnamese family in France is preparing banh chung (sticky rice cakes) for Tet__Photo: VNA

Required papers

Under Article 22 of the Citizen Identification Law, to be granted a Vietnamese citizen identity card, a Viet kieu just needs to fill in and submit a declaration form under regulations. In case no information about him/her is available on the National Population Database, he/she has to produce such lawful papers as birth certificate, temporary residence book, etc.

Procedures for grant of Vietnamese citizen identity cards to Viet kieu

Procedures for grant, renewal or re-grant of Vietnamese citizen identity cards to Viet kieu are the same as those applicable to domestic Vietnamese citizens referred to in Article 11 of the Ministry of Public Security’s Circular 21/2021/TT-BCA, specifically as follows:

- An applicant comes to a police office competent to receive applications for grant, renewal or re-grant of citizen identity cards in the locality where he/she is permanently or temporarily residing to request the grant of a citizen identity card;

- A police officer of the police office where the applicant submits his/her application searches the applicant’s information on the National Population Database; chooses the type of citizen identity card to be granted and makes description of the applicant’s personal identification features; collects the applicant’s fingerprints; takes the applicant’s portrait photo; prints out the citizen identity information sheet, resident information collection sheet (if any) and resident information updating and correction sheet (if any) for the applicant to check the information therein and then sign and write his/her full name thereon; then collects a fee from the applicant under regulations and issues an appointment slip for notification of procedure settlement results.

In case the applicant has already had a people’s identity card and wishes to convert such card into a citizen identity card or has been granted a citizen identity card and now applies for renewal of such card, the police officer will ask the applicant to return the old people’s identity card or citizen identity card; search the citizen identity archives to verify the applicant’s citizen information (if any); and process and approve the applicant’s dossier for grant, renewal or re-grant of a citizen identity card.

The police office will hand over the new, renewed or re-granted citizen identity card to the applicant in person or deliver it to the applicant through a delivery service if the latter so wishes. In the second case, the applicant will have to pay a charge.

Time limit for grant of a citizen identity card

As stated in Article 25 of the Citizen Identification Law, the time limit for grant, renewal or re-grant of a citizen identity card, counted from the date of receipt of a complete and valid application dossier, is:
  • Seven working days, for grant or renewal of citizen identity cards, or 15 working days, for re-grant of citizen identity cards in cities and towns;
  • Twenty working days, for grant, renewal and re-grant of citizen identity cards in mountainous, border or island districts; or,
  • Fifteen working days, for grant, renewal and re-grant of citizen identity cards in all other localities.- (VLLF)
 

Send Us Your Comments:

See also:

Video

Vietnam Law & Legal Forum