The United States has always been a land of immigrants.People from various nations come to the United States in search of a better life and prospects. Naturalization is the process by which permanent residents of the United States can become citizens of the beloved country they have made their home.
If you are interested in naturalization, here’s a quick guide which gives you better information about the entire process.
If you want to become a citizen of the United States, you must first check if you are eligible to apply for the naturalization process. Here’s a list of criteria that you need to satisfy to apply for naturalization.
You must be 18 years or older
You must be a Permanent Resident of the U.S for the past 5 years or 3 if you are married to a U.S citizen.
You must have continuous permanent residence in the U.S for the past 5 years. You must not have remained outside the country for more than 6 months out of any given year in the past 5 years.
You must establish a good moral character, which includes not having any major criminal offense history.
You must be able to communicate in English language.
You must have a knowledge of the history and civics of the United States.
If you get through the process of Naturalization, you must be willing to take the Oath of Allegiance to the U.S.
To apply for Naturalization, you need to complete Form N-400. The Form N-400 is a 21 page application that can be a tedious and daunting process to fill by oneself. If you make any mistakes when you fill in the application form, provide any kind of incorrect information, or submit an incomplete application, the process gets delayed. The Application for Naturalization, Form N-400 can be filled online using our software, which makes the whole process easier and quicker, making your application accurate and error free.
Application for Naturalization, Form N-400
The Form N-400, contains 17 sections out of which 14 sections have to be filled at the time of submission to the USCIS. The remaining sections must be filled at the time of the citizenship interview and at the Oath ceremony. The application requires you to fill in all your details, your name, your A-number, your parent's details, your current address, details about your spouses, your children, the dates of your travel outside the United States, your political affiliations, your moral character issues, any criminal history you may have had in the past. It is best to fill out the application form as honestly and accurately as possible. Any discrepancy in information, if found by the USCIS will result in possible rejection or a delay in processing the application.
Supporting Documents and the Application Packet
After you complete the Form N-400 online, you must print the form and sign it at the required spaces. You must submit this completed form along with copies of your Permanent resident card (Green card), 2 passport-style color photographs, application processing fees and all supporting documents to the local USCIS office. You must mail the application packet to the local USCIS lockbox by US Postal Service or FedEx/DHL. It is best to retain copies of all the documents that you send to the USCIS.
In about one to two months of submitting your application to the USCIS, you will receive a receipt from USCIS as an acknowledgment that your application has been received. After a few months of submitting the application, you will receive a notice with a schedule for biometrics appointment at the nearest USCIS office. Make sure you keep the appointment and carry an identification document with you, like your Permanent Resident card. At the biometrics appointment, you will be photographed and fingerprinted.
In a few months after your biometrics appointment, you will receive a letter from the USCIS telling you when and where your citizenship test is scheduled. Prepare well for the interview as you will be asked questions from the information you have provided on your application form. You will be asked question on the history and civics of the United States. During the interview, the USCIS officer will also evaluate whether you are able to communicate in English. On the day of the interview, be on time and carry your identification document like Green Card with you. Answer all the questions honestly and as accurately as possible. At the end of the interview, you will receive a decision whether your application for u.s. citizenship has been approved, continued or denied.
Oath of Allegiance
If your citizenship application is approved by the USCIS, you will have to wait until the USCIS notifies you of the date and time of the Oath Ceremony. At the ceremony, you must surrender your Green card to the USCIS and take the Oath of Allegiance to the United States. Once you recite the Oath of Allegiance, the USCIS will issue your Certificate of Naturalization making you a citizen of the United States officially.