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constitutes such evidence. If the citizen be a naturalized citizen, slighter and less evidence will be required than if he is a native; and 'if residing in his native country, two years' residence there has been deemed sufficient evidence of the abandonment, by a naturalized citizen, of his adopted country, and intent not to return to it. But no mere length of residence abroad, it seems to me, is sufficient, standing alone, to raise, in the case of a native citizen, such a presumption. Other circumstances are required, such as disposing of property at home, and purchase of property abroad, and having all his interests centered in his foreign abode. Question 6. When a naturalized citizen of the United States returns to his native country and resides there for a series of years, with no apparent purpose of returning, shall he be deemed to have expatriated himself, where the case is not regulated by treaty?
Answer. A naturalized citizen returning to reside in his native country will be presumed, after two years' residence, not to intend to return to his adopted country. But this would be presumption only from mere residence and lapse of time. Circumstances, actions, and even declarations might vary it. I name two years because that is the period named in several treaties for that purpose. Question 7. Are the children born abroad of a person who has been a citizen of the United States, but who has become a subject or citizen of another power, or who has expatriated himself, citizens of the United States and entitled to its protection ?
Answer. Children sub potestate parentis follow the condition of the father; or, if no father, of the mother. If of full age, and emancipated, they are subject to the same rules as any adult person. Question 8. Can a person who has formally renounced his allegiance to the United States, and assumed the obligations of a citizen or subject of another power, become again a citizen of the United States in any other way than in the manner provided by general laws?
Answer. A citizen of the United States who has renounced his citizenship and become naturalized abroad, by returning to his own country and residing there without intent to return to his adopted country, will be regarded as having renounced his adopted citizenship; but he will not be again a citizen of the United States without naturalization or the force of some special law on the subject. (See the naturalization treaties before referred to, which are based on good sense, and on reason.)
It should be added, although it does not come within the direct scope of the questions submitted, that the right of protection is not confined to citizens, but extends to denizens and those having their domicile in the United States. All persons, citizens or not, who make the United States their home, whose domicile is here, and who claim the protection of the Government, will obtain it if the claim be made in good faith and the conduct of the party has not been such as to forfeit the claim.
This was the case of Martin Koszta, who had only declared his intention to become a citizen, and who resided in the United States, but was temporarily absent in Turkey, innocently employed. All of which is respectfully submitted. Very respectfully, your obedient servant,
GEO. M. ROBESON,
Secretary of the Navy.
Washington, D. C., November 17, 1873. SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 6th August, asking the opinion, in writing, of the principal officer in each of the Executive Departments upon certain questions, therewith submitted, relating to the expatriation of citizens of the l'nited States, and the relations between the Government and expatriated persons who may claim its protection by virtue of restored citizenship.
After giving the subject such study and deliberation as its importance demanded, I cannot find any ground to differ from the views of the Attorney-General of the United States, given in his well-considered and very able opinion in answer to the same questions, also submitted to him.
The conflict of opinion heretofore expressed by eminent statesmen and jurists upon some of the points raised by the questions; the tide of immigration flowing to, and the facilities of travel from, this country; the prolonged and sometimes permanent residence of our citizens in foreign countries—all induce me to unite earnestly with the Attorner-General in the recommendation that some positive legislation be invoked to put at rest, so far as legislation can do so, these delicate international ques. tions, which may at any time involve uis in serious complications with foreign powers. I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant,
JNO. A. J. CRESWELL,
Postmaster-General. His Excellency U. S. GRANT,
President of the United States.
August 20, 1873. SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communi cation of the 6th instant, submitting for my official opinion certain questions hereinafter stated, to which I respectfully make answer as follows: Question I. The law-making power having declared that the right of expatriation is a natural and inherent right of all people, indispensable to the enjoyment of the rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, (15 U. S. Stat., p. 223,) should the Executive refuse to give effect to an act of expatriation of a citizen of the l'uites States ?
Answer. My opinion is that the affirmation by Congress that the right of expatriation is “a natural and inherent right of all people," includes citizens of the United States as well as others, and the executive should give to it that comprehensive effect. Question II. May a formal renunciation of United States citizenship, and a voluntar
submission to the sovereignty of another power, be regarded otherwise than as as act of expatriation ?
Answer. Congress has made no provision for the formal renunciation of citizenship by a citizen of the United States while he remains in this country; but if such citizen emigrates to a foreign country, and there, in the mode provided by its laws, or in any other solemn or public manner, renounces his United States citizenship, and makes a voluntary submission to its authorities with a bona fide intent of becoming a citi
zen or subject there, I think that the Goverument of the United States should not regard this proceedure otherwise than as an act of expatriation. Question III. Can an election of expatriation be shown or presumed by an acquisition of domicile in another country, with an avowed purpose not to return?
Answer. Residence in a foreign country and an intent not to return are essential elements of expatriation ; but to show complete expatriation as the law now stands, it is necessary to show something more than these. Attorney-General Black says (IX Opinions, p. 359) that expatriation includes not only emigration out of one's native country, but naturalization in the country adopted as a future residence. My opinion, however, is that, in addition to domicile and an intent to remain, such expressions or acts as amount to a renunciation of United States citizenship and a willingness to submit to or adopt the obligations of the country in which the person resides, such as accepting public employment, engaging in a military service, &c., may be treated by this Government as expatriation, without actual naturalization. Naturalization is, without doubt, the highest but not the only evidence of expatriation. Question IT. Ought the Government to hold itself bound to extend its protection, and exert its inilitary and naval power for such protection, in favor of persons who have left its territories, and who reside abroad, without an apparent intent to return to them, and who do not contribute to its support?
Ansicer. Persons born in the United States, who, having left them, reside abroad with no apparent intention of returning, and who do not contribute to their support, do not necessarily discharge the United States Government from its obligation to interpose for their protection in proper cases. Foreign domicile, which is substantially described in this inquiry, is not the equivalent of expatriation. When a citizen of the United States becomes domiciled in a foreign country he becomes, as a general rule, subject to its laws and its authorities like one of its citizens; but if, by his acts or declarations, he continues to assert his United States citizenship, and takes no oaths, or public or official obligations inconsistent therewith, it is the duty of the Government of the United States, though he may have at the time no real or apparent intent to return to them, to protect him against special acts of wrong or injustice by the Government of the country in which he resides, and from the imposition upon him by that government of duties which are exclusively due from its own citizens or subjects, or which may be inconsistent with his allegiance to the United States. Question 1. What should constitute evidence of the absence of an intent to return in such cases?
Answer. When a citizen of the United States goes abroad without intending to return, he takes one indispensable step toward expatriation ; but to effect a complete annihilation of all duties and obligations between the government of his native country and himself, which extradition implies, it is necessary that he should become a resident in some foreign country with an intent to remain there, superadded to which there must be acts in the direction of becoming a citizen or subject of such foreign country, amounting at least to a renunciation of United States citizenship. Absence of an intent to return to one's native country, or to speak, perhaps, with more accuracy in considering a question of expatriation, an intent to remain in a foreign country, may be evidenced in various ways and by a great variety of circumstances, and though it might not be difficult to determine from the facts in a specific case as to the intent of a party changing his domicile, it is impossible to lay down any general rule upon the subject by which all cases can be decided. Intent is the great criterion by which the character of domicile is determined. When a person avows his purpose to change his residence and acts accordingly, his declarations upon the subject are generally received as a satisfactory evidence of his intent; but in the absence of such evidence the sale of his property and the settling up of his business before emigration, the removal of his family, if he has one, arrangements for a continuing place of abode, the acquisition of property after removal, the formation of durable business relations, and the lapse of a long period under such circumstances are among the leading considerations from which the intent to make a permanent change of domicile is inferred. Question 11. When a naturalized citizen of the United States returns to his native
country, and resides there for a series of years with no apparent purpose of returning, shall he be deemed to have expatriated himself where the case is not regulated by treaty?
Ansuer. Conflicting views have been advanced upon this question by distinguished lawyers and statesmen of this country; but I know of no principle upon which it can be held that, with respect to protection in foreign countries, the rights of a naturalized are different from those of a native-born citizen. Domicile in his native country without an intent to return to the United States, by a naturalized citizen, would not of themselves, so long as he maintains his claim and distinctiveness as such naturalized citizen, deprive him of his right of protection in proper cases by the Government of the United States. But less evidence would per. haps be requisite to show that a person residing in his native country had thrown off a foreign citizenship acquired by naturalization, or, in other words, had expatriated himself from his adopted country, than to show that a person born in the United States, but residing elsewhere, had expatriated himself from his native country. Naturalization effected in the United States without an intent to reside permanently therein, but with a view of residing in another country, and using such naturalization to evade duties and responsibilities that would otherwise attach to the naturalized person, ought to be treated by the Government of the United States as fraudulent, and as imposing upon it no obligation to protect such person; and as to this the Executive must judge from all the circumstances of the case. Section 2 of the act of July 27, 1867, (supra,) as to protection in foreign countries, puts naturalized and native-born citizens upon the same ground. Question VII. Are the children born abroad of a person who has been a citizen of the
United States, but who has become a subject or citizen of another power, or who has expatriated himself, citizens of the United States, and entitled to its protection!
Answer. Section 1 of the act of February 10, 1855, (10 U. S. Stat., p. 604,) provides that 6 persons heretofore born, or hereafter to be born, out of the limits and jurisdiction of the United States, whose fathers were, or shall be at the time of their birth, citizens of the United States, shall be deemed and considered, and are hereby declared to be, citizens of the United States: Provided, however, that the rights of citizenship shall not descend to persons whose fathers never resided in the l'nited States;" from which, as well as from other considerations, it is evident that children bom abroad of persons once citizens of the United States but who have become citizens or subjects of a foreign power, are not citizens of the United States, or, as such, entitled to their protection. Question VIII. Can a person who has formally renounced his allegiance to the l'nited
States, and assumed the obligations of a citizen or subject of another power, becue again a citizon of the United States in any other way than in the manner provided by general laws?
Answer. Persons born in the United States who have, accorcling to the laws of a foreign country, become subjects or citizens thereof, must be regarded as aliens; and section 1 of the act of April 14, 1802, (2 U. S. Stat., p. 153,) declares that an alien may be admitted to become a citizen of the United States as provided in said act, and not otherwise. Actual naturalization abroad would seem to be necessary to make a person born in the United States an alien.
Section 1 of the fourteenth amendment to the Constitution declares that all persons born or naturalized in the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.” But the word “jurisdiction" must be understood to mean absolute or complete jurisdiction, such as the United States had over its citizens before the adoption of this amendment. Aliens, among whom are persons born here and naturalized abroad, dwelling or being in this country, are subject to the jurisdiction of the United States only to a limited extent. Political and military rights and duties do not pertain to them.
I have made the foregoing answers as specific as I can to what are abstract propositions; but I beg to add, generally, tbat, in the absence of treaties and legislation by Congress touching the subjects involved in said questions, the rules of law relating thereto are to be drawn from writers upon international and public law, who do not always agree, and therefore it will be difficult for the Government to act upon any such rules without a chance of controversy.
Legislation is needed to declare by what acts United States citizenship is lost. According to the French code, not only naturalization in a foreign country, but a fixed residence there without the intention of returning, destroys the quality of a Frenchman; and regulations to the effect that a subject by acts other than naturalization in a foreign country may expatriate himself bave been adopted by Russia, Austria, Italy, and other countries of Europe. I can see no good reason why Congress may not put an end to controversy upon the subject by declaring that a citizen of the United States who emigrates to a foreign country with the avowed purpose of remaining there, or who resides abroad for a definite period without an avowed purpose of returning to the United States, shall be considered as thereby expatriating himself or losing the right to call upon the Government of the United States for protection during such foreign residence. Several treaties have been made with European powers to the effect that when a naturalized citizen renews his residence in his native country with intent to remain, he shall be held to have renounced his naturalization; and something like this, it seems to me, might with great propriety be incorporated into the laws of this country, to be applied as well to our citizens who, having been naturalized abroad, return to reside in the United States, as to those who, naturalized here, return to reside in their native country. Very respectfully,
GEO. H. WILLIAMS,
Attorney-General. The PRESIDENT.
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,
Washington, D. C., September 30, 1873. SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your communication of the 6th of August last, which requests me to answer certain