Can my child born in a foreign country (e.g. US or Canada) enjoy the right of abode in the HKSAR?
If I have emigrated overseas and I am an overseas resident (e.g. become a US resident, holder of US green card but have not yet naturalized as a US citizen), can my child born in a foreign country (e.g. US or Canada) enjoy the right of abode in the HKSAR?
If a child has acquired a foreign nationality at birth to parents of Chinese nationality who have settled overseas (e.g. in the USA) at the time of the child’s birth, regardless of whether or not the parents have acquired the foreign nationality, the child does not have Chinese nationality in accordance with Article 5 of the Nationality Law of the People’s Republic of China. As the child is not a Chinese citizen, he or she is not eligible for Hong Kong permanent resident status.
Under paragraph 2(c) of Schedule 1 to the Immigration Ordinance, Cap 115, a person of Chinese nationality born outside Hong Kong before or after the establishment of the HKSAR to a parent who, at the time of birth of that person, was a Chinese citizen born in Hong Kong or has resided ordinarily in Hong Kong for a continuous period of not less than 7 years, is a permanent resident of the HKSAR and can enjoy the right of abode in Hong Kong.
However, for a Chinese citizen born in Hong Kong or has ordinarily resided in Hong Kong for a continuous period of not less than 7 years, his or her child’s eligibility for the right of abode in Hong Kong depends on whether this child has Chinese nationality at the time of birth.
Article 5 of Chinese Nationality Law states that: “Any person born abroad whose parents are both Chinese nationals or one of whose parents is a Chinese national shall have Chinese nationality. But a person whose parents are both Chinese nationals and have both settled abroad, or one of whose parents is a Chinese national and has settled abroad, and who has acquired foreign nationality at birth shall not have Chinese nationality.”
Under normal circumstances, having permanent resident status in a foreign country (that is, having resided abroad ordinarily and not being subject to any limit of stay) will be treated as having settled abroad.