US citizenship is automatically acquired if born in the US or any of its territories. Birthright citizenship is one of two paths to US citizenship, the other being naturalization. The other ways in which someone becomes a US citizen by birth are listed below.
- You are an American citizen by birth if you were born in the US.
- You are an American citizen by birth (in most cases) if you were born outside the US but both parents are US citizens, and at least one of them has lived in the US at some point in his/her life.
- You are an American citizen by birth (in most cases), if according to the USCIS guide, ALL of the following are true:
- At least one of your parents was a U.S. citizen when you were born and your citizen parent lived in the United States for at least 5 years before you were born; and
- At least 2 of these 5 years in the United States were after your citizen parent's 14th birthday.
Your record of birth abroad, if registered with a US Consulates or embassy, is proof of your citizenship. You may also apply for a passport to have your citizenship recognized. If you need additional proof of your citizenship, you may file an "Application for Certificate of Citizenship" (Form N-600) with USCIS to get a Certificate of Citizenship.
You can read more on becoming a US citizen by birth by visiting US Citizenship by Birth.