Naturalization is the process by which a person born outside of the United States is granted U.S. citizenship. To be granted naturalization, you must fulfill all requirements established by Congress found in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).
You may be eligible to apply for naturalization if:
- You are at least 18 years of age
- You have been a permanent resident for the past three to five years
- You have maintained a continuous residence and physical presence in the U.S.
- You can read, write, and speak basic English
- You display good moral character
- You understand U.S. history and government
- You are loyal to the principles of the U.S. Constitution
- You are willing to take the Oath of Allegiance
Paths to Citizenship
Of course, there are different paths to citizenship. Each unique path has specific requirements you must meet in order to apply for naturalization. Following are the most common paths:
- Green card holder of at least 5 years
- Green card holder married to U.S. Citizen
- Green card holder and member of the military
- Child of U.S. citizen
You must pass a naturalization test in order to become a naturalized United States citizen. Unless you qualify for an exemption, you must take a civics test and an English test at your naturalization interview. The English test includes speaking, reading, and writing. You have two opportunities to take these tests. If you do not pass the first time, you will retake the failed portion (English or civics) within 2 to 3 months after your initial interview.
There are opportunities to study for both portions of the naturalization test and to take practice tests at home. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services provides study materials online, which can be found here.
After your naturalization application is approved by USCIS, the next step is to attend a naturalization ceremony and take the Oath of Allegiance. This is the final step in the process of becoming a United States citizen. You may be able to attend a ceremony on the same day as your interview, or you will receive a Notice of Naturalization Oath Ceremony.
After you receive the notice, this is what you can expect to take place at your naturalization ceremony:
- Check in with a USCIS officer
- Return your Permanent Resident Card to USCIS
- Take the Oath of Allegiance
- Receive Certificate of Naturalization
Your Certificate of Naturalization may be used as proof of your U.S. citizenship. Once you become a citizen, you may apply for a U.S Passport, Register to Vote, and update your Social Security record.
How We Can Help
Youngblood & Associates will help you determine if you are eligible to apply for naturalization to become a United States citizen and represent you throughout the process of applying. We can accompany you to your interview, will determine if you qualify for an English-language exemption, and will represent you in your best light to demonstrate your good moral character.
Not sure what you need?
Call our office today at 931-274-7811 to schedule your FREE first consultation or complete a service inquiry form to get your process started today.