You have come to the United States and want to make it your home. You may have gone through the immigration process and become a lawful permanent resident, but it is your hope and desire to become a United States citizen.
What do you have to do to become a United States citizen? What steps do you have to take? Is there a process that you have to go through?
Just as there is an immigration process that has to be completed in order for you to become a lawful permanent resident, there is also a process of naturalization for you to become a United States citizen.
Naturalization is the term used to refer to the process of becoming a United States citizen. Naturalization is defined as being, “the process by which U.S. citizenship is conferred upon a foreign citizen or national after he or she fulfills the requirements established by Congress in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).”
The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) was established in 1952. There were a variety of statutes that governed immigration law before the INA was passed, but they were not organized in one location. The McCarran-Walter bill of 1952, Public Law No. 82-414, collected and codified many existing provisions and reorganized the structure of immigration law. Through the years, this Act has been amended many times. However, it is still the basic body of immigration law.
There are some general requirements that you must meet for administrative naturalization. These include:
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- An ability to read, write and speak English
- Good moral character
- A period of physical presence and continuous residence in the United States
- Residence in a particular USCIS District prior to filing for citizenship
- Favorable disposition toward the United States
- Attachment to the principles of the United States Constitution
All naturalization applicants have to demonstrate attachment, favorable disposition and good moral character. The other naturalization requirements may be waived or modified for certain applicants like the spouses of United States citizens.
As mentioned earlier, there are steps that have to be taken in order for you to become a United States citizen. There is a process involved that you must go through.
The first step in naturalization has already been mentioned. That is, that you believe you meet the eligibility requirements.
The next step is to apply for United States citizenship through naturalization. This is done by obtaining an application. The application is called the “Application for Naturalization” (Form N-400). This form can be downloaded off of the internet. Along with the completed application you will to get two approved passport-sized photos. You will need to collect all required supporting documents and make sure they are properly completed and/or translated. You then mail this application package to the correct USCIS location.
The next step in the process of naturalization is to get fingerprinted. The US Citizenship and Immigration Services will send you an acknowledgement letter that they have received your application for United States citizenship. The letter will tell you the date and time to get fingerprinted. If the USCIS requests any additional documents, you will need to send them in.
The next step in the process of naturalization is that you will receive an interview appointment letter from the USCIS. It can take anywhere from five months to longer than two years between the sending in of your application package and your interview to become a United States citizen. This letter will tell you the date, time and place for your interview. You will need to take identification and any other documents that the USCIS may have requested that you bring to the interview.
At the interview you will answer questions about your background and application. You will take the English and Civics tests. Then, you have to wait for a decision from the US Citizenship and Immigration Services.
The final step in the process of naturalization is that you will receive a ceremony date letter from USCIS telling you that your application has been approved and setting the date for your ceremony of citizenship. You will check in at the ceremony location on the date and time specified in your letter. You will return your Permanent Resident Card and answer questions about what you have done since the interview. You take the oath of allegiance, receive your Certificate of Naturalization and become a United States citizen.
As you can see, this process of naturalization takes time, and there can be long delays in the process. Because of this, you or a relative may need help from a legal professional with problems or difficulties that you have encountered in the process of naturalization.
A skilled immigration attorney may be able to help you or your relative avoid long delays, overcome and avoid many legal issues and simplify the naturalization process as much as possible. One of the reasons for this is that immigration law is broad and complex. It is also ever changing.
Family lawyers or those recommended by friends are wonderful, but they may not be the right ones to help you or a relative with immigration issues and the process of becoming a United States citizen through naturalization.
In these matters you need someone who knows and specializes in immigration law. This is what an immigration attorney does. He or she specializes in cases and issues involving immigration and naturalization. They keep up with the updates and changes to immigration law.
usimmigrationlawyer.com is the Website where you or your relative will find an experienced immigration attorney that you can rely and depend on. The trustworthy immigration attorney at usimmigrationlawyer.com can help and advise you or your relative with any problems or difficulties that you are having with the naturalization process.
Do not put this off. Do not hesitate. This is a matter of vial importance to you or your relative. It can affect you or your relative for the rest of their life. Contact the proven immigration attorney at usimmigrationlawyer.com, today.