Polish citizenship - News

Legal news related to Polish citizenship

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Refusal of military service and loss of Polish citizenship

According to Art. 113 of the Act of April 9, 1938 on universal military duty, military service was an honorable service for the Nation and the State, and at the same time the fulfillment of the basic civil duty. The law had significant consequences in the form of even the loss of Polish citizenship with the evasion of military service.

Another provision of this legal act stipulated that a Polish citizen subject to military duty may, at the request of the Minister of Military Affairs or a military authority authorized by him, be deprived of Polish citizenship. This could happen in a situation where a citizen:

  • • despite his military obligation, he left the unit or position and stayed outside the Polish State or in the territory occupied by the enemy;
  • • in order to avoid military duty, he did not satisfy an appointment or public summons to service, but went abroad or to an area occupied by the enemy and stayed there;
  • • resided permanently outside the Polish State and, in order to avoid his military obligation, did not report to the R. P. consular office or the competent military authority in the country within the time limit set by the authorities;
  • • stayed outside the Polish State and recruited Polish citizens staying in the country or abroad to a foreign army or a foreign military organization.

The authorities competent to issue decisions on the deprivation of Polish citizenship and the procedure to be followed in these cases were specified in the ordinance of the Ministers of Military Affairs, Interior and Social Welfare of February 7, 1939, issued in consultation with the Ministers of: Foreign Affairs, Treasury, Justice, Religious Denominations and Enlightenment Public, Agriculture and Agricultural Reforms and Communication on the implementation of the Act of April 9, 1938 on the universal military obligation.

It is significant that this regulation provided for the obligation to issue a decision on the deprivation of Polish citizenship. In practice, this means that persons who evaded the obligation to perform military service did not automatically lose their citizenship, unless a final decision was issued in their case.

This law was in force from September 2, 1938 to May 28, 1950.