Immigration. Travel. Living.

Trinidad and Tobago: ways for citizenship

Flag of Trinidad and Tobago

Trinidad and Tobago (T&T) are blessed with oil and gas resources due to its proximity to Venezuela, which holds the world’s greatest oil reserves. Trinidad, with a land area of 4,800 square kilometers, and Tobago, with a land area of 300 square kilometers, make up the country’s territory. Trinidad is substantially closer to Venezuela (11 kilometers) than Tobago is to Trinidad (30 km).

The population of T&T is estimated to be 1.4 million people. Port of Spain is the country’s capital. You may fly to Port of Spain Piarco International Airport (POS) from Canada, the United Kingdom, or the United States. You can also travel to Trinidad and Tobago via cruise liner.

The Trinidad and Tobago Constitution Order of 1962, as modified; the 1976 Citizenship Act, as amended; and numerous British Nationality statutes govern Trinidadian and Tobagonian nationality law. These laws define who is a Trinidad and Tobago national or who is qualified to become one. Birth in Trinidad and Tobago or birth abroad to parents holding Trinidadian and Tobagonian nationality are the most common ways to get Trinidadian and Tobagonian nationality.

It can be awarded to people who have a connection to the country or to permanent residents who have resided in the country for a certain period. In T&T, there is currently no mechanism for anyone to gain nationality by investing in the country. As a citizen of a sovereign nation, one’s nationality establishes one’s international identity. Though not synonymous with citizenship, the United Kingdom, and hence the commonwealth, have long used the terms interchangeably for rights conferred under domestic law for domestic reasons.

Birth, registration, or naturalization are all ways to become Trinidadian or Tobagonian.


By Birth

Persons born on the territory, unless their foreign parents are granted diplomatic immunity or persons born outside of T&T to at least one parent who was born in the country.

aerial view of city buildings during night time

By Registration

Those who have familial or historical ties to Trinidad and Tobago are considered nationals by registration. Individuals who obtain nationality by registration include:

  1. After five years of residency in the territory, Commonwealth nationals, Republic of Ireland nationals, or British Protected Persons.
  2. Foreign spouses of Trinidad and Tobago nationals who have relinquished their former citizenship.
  3. Minors under the age of eighteen who have been legally adopted by a Trinidad and Tobago national; or
  4. Any juvenile, at the Minister in charge of immigration’s discretion.


By Naturalization

Ordinary naturalization in Trinidad and Tobago is available to adults of legal capacity who have remained in the territory for the previous 12 months, are of good character, and plan to remain a resident of T&T.

Applicants petition the Minister of Immigration, who assesses if the applicant has sufficient English language skills, has lived in the territory for eight years, has worked for the government, or has combined residency with government employment. Applicants must swear an Oath of Allegiance and may be asked to relinquish their citizenship of origin if their application is approved.

If the declarant is a legal adult with full capacity, he or she may voluntarily renounce their affiliation with Trinidad and Tobago. If the country is at war with the proposed new source of nationality, renunciation may not be accepted. If a person obtains nationality through fraud, false representation, or deception, or if a naturalized person has dual nationality, denaturalization may occur

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