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Dual citizenship and Russian visa

+1 vote
Hello everyone,
I am russian citizen, was born in Russia and still have my parents in Moscow. In addition to that, when I moved with my wife to New York I did not drop my housing record (propiska) in Moscow, so for russian authorities I am considered "temporarily away from Russia". Recently I have received US citizenship based on refuge status. Now I feel totaly lost, because I need to travel to Russia often and I don't know what kind of visa I need to get or, I don't need any visa since I have both US and Russian passports. As I understand I can use russian passport to enter and leave Russia, but how russian and US authorities will react on the fact that I don't have a visa?
It would be very helpful if you can clarify this for me.
asked Mar 5, 2015 in Russian Visa by Lavrichev (280 points)
I have almost the same problem as you do. i am leaving to Russia for the first time in 10 years sinse I emigrated on June 11,2006. I am trying to find out which passport I should use??? Very confusing! The only thing I found out is that we can not get a visa even if we want to due to the fact that we are still concidered to be Russian citizens. Russia does not recognize dual citizenship. If you have your Russian (zagranichnii) passport, in your case you must use it to enter Russia.
My problem is that I have both Russian and American passports but my Russian (zagranichnii) passport still under my maiden name and American under married name?!  :(
If anyone has any idea what to do in this case,please let me know.

2 Answers

+1 vote
Best answer
yes, I just got back recently. Since I have both passports I used both of them when I was leaving US. When I came to Moscow I showed my Russian passport in the airport. When I was leaving Russia I showed both passports again, and when I came to US I came through US customs as american citizen showing only US passport.
I found out all legal information regarding this question. If you have both citizenships and you want to visit Russia you must enter country as Russian citizen. You may be detained if you do otherwise and if they find out. When you leave Russia you can show both passports - russian customs don't care how many citizenships you have, they only care that you are allowed to enter the country you are going to. That is why you can safely show them your US passport. Same applies to US customs - they need to be sure that you will be able to enter the country you are going to. Therefore, renew your russian passport ASAP. If you have different names, try to make a translated copy of your name change documents signed by notarius, or request a new russian passport with a new name.
Do not bother with visa and good luck!
answered Mar 5, 2015 by Lavrichev (280 points)
You said  "make a translated copy of your name change documents". What document can this be? Marriage document only lists my maiden.
Also, if the name does not match, which passport do you use to book your airline ticket?
Thank you!
+1 vote
Yesterday I called russia-visa.com customer service and spoke with Oleg (as I've read testimonials he is very good guy). He said that even if you have a dual citizenship you can still get a visa to Russia (at least through them) and enter Russia as US citizen with all advantages that US citizens have. The second option is to visit Russia without any visa. When you depart from US and enter Russia you will show Russian passport. When you depart from Russia and enter US you will show US passport (US doesn't care which country you came from). He also said that many people he knows personaly did it without any problem, however, every case is unique. Anyway, I don't think there will be any obligation to try to get russian visa from a third party like russia-visa.com. Since Russia has no idea what your married name is, you should be able to get your visa with no problem.
answered Mar 5, 2015 by Lavrichev (280 points)
so....how did it go? did you end up traveling with both passports?
Did you ever apply for visa to Russia being actually a Russian citizen? I want to go to Russia as US citizen. Just wanted to see if you were able to do so.