How to get proof of citizenship (domovnica)

Sharing is Caring:

Anyone born in Croatia or born to Croatian parents is automatically a citizen of Croatia. In certain cases, you’ll need to provide proof of citizenship (called “domovnica”) like when requesting a copy of your birth certificate.

In this post, we’ll go over how to procure proof of citizenship for yourself or a relative depending on the situation.

Domovnica - Proof of Croatian nationality
Image by Slobodna Dalmacija

1. You have Croatian parents, but were not born in Croatia

If you’re Croatian diaspora but were not born in Croatia, then you will not be automatically registered in Matica rođenih, which is the master registry of Croatian births. A Croatian citizen born in a foreign country can be registered after the fact in Matica rođenih. Only after registration can the citizen get their birth certificate.

The request for Croatian citizenship can be submitted at any police department in Croatia or at a Croatian consular office in foreign countries. For people with disabilities, the request can be submitted by their legal representative or authorized person with power of attorney.

To make the request for registration and the associated domovnica, you will need to provide:

  • Curriculum vitae
  • An original birth certificate, not older than 6 months
  • An original marriage certificate, if applicable, not older than 6 months
  • Proof showing family relationship with your parents, grandparents or grand-grandparents
  • Background check from your country of birth, not older than six months
  • A certified copy of a valid identity document

After a decision is made on your application, you will be notified by mail whether or not it was approved. If your request was accepted, then you will receive Croatian citizenship after you pay the fee of 1.050 kuna. If your request was rejected, you will only need to pay an application fee of 35 kuna.

After your application is approved, your domovnica can be picked up at any Registrar Office in Croatia or in a Croatian Consular office abroad.

2. You were born in Croatia and/or have citizenship through other means

If you were born in Croatia, you already have Croatian nationality. Or, perhaps you recently applied for and were granted citizenship. In both of these cases, you can pick up your domovnica at any Registrar office in Croatia or in a Croatian Consular office abroad. The cost for a copy of your domovnica is 20 kuna.

Get domovnica for child
Image by Kat Grigg

3. You have Croatian parents, grandparents, or great-grandparents and need their domovnica, not your own domovnica

To get the domovnica of your parents, grandparents and great-grandparents, you must prove the lineage between you and your family. As evidence, you can enclose either:

  • Your relative’s birth certificate or
  • Authorization from your relative verified by a notary public confirming your lineage.

Once you have one of the two pieces of evidence, you can purchase the domovnica at the Registrar office in Croatia or in Croatian Consular office abroad.

If your relative is dead and you need his/her domovnica, it is not possible to get domovnica. In this case, you can get written confirmation from the Registrar that he/she was a Croatian citizen. This confirmation can be purchased at the Registrar office in Croatia or in Croatian Consular office abroad. You can purchase it personally or via person authorized by the notary public.

Sharing is Caring:

8 thoughts on “How to get proof of citizenship (domovnica)

  1. Joaquín
    August 6, 2019 @ 4:54 pm


    What is the case if someone is a citizen granted because his great grandparents, do his newborn may be able to have to citizenship?


    • Expat in Croatia
      August 7, 2019 @ 1:49 pm

      Hi Joaquin,

      It doesn’t matter how someone got Croatian citizenship. If they have a child, then their child can get citizenship.




  2. Terentia Stefani
    September 7, 2019 @ 5:27 pm

    Hello Sara,
    My father was born in Lussingrande (Veli Losinj) in 1932 when it was still Italy. His family emigrated to the Italian mainland when his birthplace became Yugoslavia after WWII. He would like to move back to “Lussino” to the retirement home on the island and, when the time comes, be buried in our Stefic’/Steffich family plot behind the “Chiesa di Sant’Antonio Abate”.

    When vacationing in Veli Losinj a few weeks ago in August, he was told by the retirement home that he must first become a resident and cannot receive his residency until after 5 years of living in Veli Losinj before he can even apply to the retirement home. Since he is almost 88 years old, you can imagine his disappointment in receiving this news. He holds dual citizenship – his Italian passport show birthplace as Lussingrande (HRV), and his USA passport shows birthplace as Croatia! Can he acquire Croatian citizenship and then get his residency faster? I am currently living in Rome and have the same dual citizenship. It only took me a few months to get my residency since I was an Italian citizen, and Croatia is also a part of the EU and may have the same rules.

    Dad still lives in NY where he moved to in 1956 and we are trying to grant his final wish of living on Veli Losinj before it is too late. My Mom passed away in 2017 and he is now alone with us kids spread out throughout the USA, and me in Rome, but he wants to go back to his homeland.

    Thank you very much in advance for your attention.

    Kindest regards,


  3. Brad
    November 27, 2019 @ 1:47 am


    My Great Grandfather was born in otok BRAČ and left in early 1900. I am wanting to explore the possibility of going back for extend stays to know my heritage and larger family unit who still live there. To apply for DOMOVNICA for someone who died in another country (my pradjed) am I correct in starting this process by gaining initially a birth certificate from the consulate etc? and then getting this verified? AM I also correct in believing that I am entitled also to citizenship being third generation? Ive read many posts and answers on this site. Lots of information. Hvala Lijepa!


    • Expat in Croatia
      November 30, 2019 @ 3:59 pm

      Bok Brad,

      Thanks for reaching out!

      If your great grandfather was Croatian, then yes, you qualify to apply for citizenship. You will need to get proof of his citizenship, which you can do through an embassy or at a Registrar’s office in Croatia. You won’t be able to get his birth certificate from the Croatian government since he is passed and you don’t have permission. Proof of his citizenship and proof of your connection to him is all you need.




  4. Steve Kusic
    June 26, 2020 @ 4:46 am

    I received my Croatian citizenship in March of 2019. I applied through the consulate in Los Angeles.
    As of now the only proof that I have is the letter I received from the consulate.
    Will this letter be enough for me to obtain my Domovnica, and how do I obtain it.
    I live in the U.S. but I am planning on moving to Croatia as soon as possible. I also have a five year old son and I would also like to obtain Croatian citizenship for him as well as Croatian passports for the both of us.
    Any advise would be welcome and greatly appreciated.



    • Expat in Croatia
      July 1, 2020 @ 10:20 am

      Hi Steve,

      Thank you for reaching out!

      You first need to request a copy of your birth certificate. To do that, you must first register with the Maticni Ured using the decision on your citizenship. Once registered, then you can request your birth certificate. Here are instructions:

      Next, you can use your birth certificate to get your domovnica.

      Registering with Matcini Ured can only be done within Croatia. I can connection you with a lawyer who can handle this on your behalf. They can also handle applying for Croatian citizenship for your child if you’d like. If you’d like a referral, please contact me by email.




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe to the Expat in Croatia Newsletter and get a FREE GUIDE to the 9 Biggest Mistakes People Make When Moving to Croatia.