Referendum Answers

Short Answers to Popular Questions about Scottish Independence

Passports

Q. Would I have to give up my British passport and buy a new Scottish one?

A. No

Oh oh. Have you heard this one too? Theresa May, Home Secretary, hinting that, after independence, she'd be knocking on your door demanding your passport? Don't worry, it's just another independence scary fairy tale from the glooms at Project Fear.

So what's the reality? Would we really have to hand in our British passports and buy new Scottish ones? Well, turns out that citizenship and the issuing of passports are based on the principles and articles of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Hard for even Mrs May to ignore that.

In fact, even Mrs May's own department, the UK Border Agency admits that "..British subjects [you and us] who take on another nationality [Scottish in our case] can keep their British nationality and passport, as long as the second country [Scotland in our case] allows dual nationality". And of course the Scottish government has already said that it will allow dual nationality.

So what does this mean for your passport after independence? Well, it means that:

  • You can just hold onto your British passport
  • Or you can chuck your British passport in the bin and take out a Scottish passport
  • Or you can have two passports

Your choice. No problem.

 

Sources

United Nations: The Universal Declaration of Human Rights

The UK Border Agency: Information About Dual Nationality

Further Reading

Wings over Scotland: Nationality for nationalists