Peru Naturalization and Citizenship

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Naturalization is the process of granting citizenship privileges and responsibilities to residents. In Peru, citizenship was a valuable privilege that included:

  • Rights to engage in business in a city.
  • Protection under the law.
  • Rights to purchase real property.
  • The right and obligation to vote.

Those who received the rights to citizenship are recorded in citizenship books. These books include information about the citizen, such as names, ages, social and economic status, occupation and training, and sometimes birthplaces and relationships. Until the 20th century, only males of the middle or upper classes were granted citizenship.

Only natural-born citizens of Peru can hold political office, such as deputy, senator, minister, or president.

Non-citizens are also prohibited from obtaining property within 50 kilometers of the border and living near military establishments. Since 1936, naturalizations have been recorded in the Personal Registry (Registro Personal) in the Office of the Civil Registrar (Oficinas de Registro Civil).

For Peruvians who moved to the United States, naturalization records in the United States may be an excellent source for determining the specific town or city where your ancestor was born, especially after 1906. (See United States Naturalization and Citizenship.