Double Identity

What is the double identity issue and why is it a challenge

The situation of having two identities and two nationalities, written by Alejandro Quezada based upon his own life experiences

NOTE:

This might not be applicable for everyone since the irregular adoptions went in different ways as we recently learned. 

I will explain the following items: 

  1. How adoptions should go in order not to continue life with a double identity.
  2. Where my “two identities” come from.
  3. Chilean nationality under Chilean law
  4. The effect for any children you might have
  5. The difficulties someone faces once he/she decides to continue life in Chile (like myself)

1.

A child who got adopted and went to a different country should be “deleted” from the Register office administration so that the child will not show up anymore as a citizen in the country of origin. A note could be made next to the original name that the child has continued life at the country of destination with the new name. This way the child is simply not in the country of origin anymore and when it would come back one day to the country of origin, he or she would arrive as a tourist.  

2.

In my case, I was declared dead towards my mother but of course I am still alive and no death certificate was ever issued for me. During my birth I have been registered as born alive and I received a Chilean RUT Number based on my inscription of my Chilean name. I. Alejandro Quezada Quezada (my father didn’t recognize me so I have two times the last name of my mother) 

For Chilean law I was put under “personal care” and NOT under Adoption (Chile had no adoption law those years). Here is the challenge:

Once arrived in the Netherlands my adoption family gave me a new name to their likings and I received the family name of them; totally different from my Chilean names. On top of that, I received the Dutch nationality by the immigration office due to the adoption that took place in the Netherlands. And there I was: living in NL under my new name and new identity. 

Little did I know; at some point in life, being 30 years of age, I found out together with a friend I made in Chile, that my Identity in Chile still existed. And this only came to light because we were speaking about my adoption. I send him a copy of the Chilean passport I came to the Netherlands with in the year 1980. 

He looked up the RUT number and there it was; I was still an active Chilean citizen with my Chilean name. Nothing was deleted from the system. 

3.

So I found out that I was still a Chilean citizen like any other person living here. There is no difference. I can rent a house, buy a car (for that you only need your id-card), have a job, start a company, vote, etc. 

In Chile however there is no notice of my Dutch Nationality. It’s almost like having disappeared into oblivion. Chilean state does not know that if I show my Dutch passport, I am Chilean. Because it says: “Nationality: Dutch”. The only thing that it mentions is Paillaco as my place of birth but that’s it. My Dutch identity does not exist here. There is no link. Period. 

So when someone decides to go and live in Chile and takes with him or her a partner and their children they have together, you will get into serious challenges. 

Let me explain this: 

4.

First of all it is important to know that there is a second way one obtains automatically the Chilean nationality. That is when one is born outside Chile and the parents, or at least one of them, has the Chilean nationality. 

Children who were born for example in the Netherlands and thus on Dutch soil, from a Dutch parent, no matter mother or father, both having the Dutch Nationality, their children are simply Dutch. 

But they also have the Chilean nationality because for the Chilean law, being still an active citizen, born outside Chile of a father / mother who has the Chilean nationality: by Chilean law those newborn children are Chilean citizens too!! 

5.

But when you get to the point of obtaining the RUT Number for your children, there is no way to do this because in my case: on their birth certificates, which were Dutch, because my children were born in the Netherlands, I am being mentioned with my Dutch name as their father. As the Chilean identity does not exist in the Netherlands, there is no way you can tell you are the same person. That person with that identity (while you are the same person) is legally not recognized by Chilean law because there is no connection between those two identities. So here in Chile the children are NOT your children and your partner is simply without a connection to you. 

Thanks to the irregularity of the adoption and not being eliminated from the Chilean System. 

I obtained my Chilean ID card in 2013. That was the least of all the issues so with my Chilean citizenship I am totally welcome here in Chile. However, we entered the country in 2014 with our Dutch passports and since we could not arrange for our children and partner to have them registered as Chileans, we were illegally in this country for almost four years. 

This is something for which no law exists yet. That is actually what CAW is trying to change. Because Chilean migration authority knew we were in the country illegally and they knew that they can not just throw us out because I am officially a Chilean and the children that are with me are connected to me. So they left it alone, because there is no law applicable to this situation and no one really knew what to do and how to solve this. Until today this remains a very challenging situation for many of us. 


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