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As long as you qualify, you may be able to become a US citizen through the process of naturalization. Naturalization is an exciting, but complex process. It helps to have an experienced naturalization attorney, like those at Los Angeles Legal Advocates, on your side to help guide you through the steps and prepare you to meet the naturalization eligibility requirements.
What is naturalization?
Naturalization is a process that allows a lawful permanent resident to become a US citizen once they achieve eligibility. It begins with obtaining a green card and ends with citizenship. There are a number of requirements for naturalization laid out in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). A naturalization attorney can help simplify these requirements so that you can meet them with ease and begin the journey towards citizenship.
Citizenship requirements in the United States:
What is the naturalization process?
Before you apply for naturalization, you must be a green card holder for at least 3 years if you obtained your green card through marriage of a U.S citizen or 5 years if otherwise. In this time, you can work and live in the United States, fulfilling the requirement of physical presence and residency. At any time during the statutory period, your attorneys can begin the naturalization process.
The first step is filing an N-400 application. Once this is filed, along with any supporting documents and the filing fee, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will send a notice of receipt, as well as a case number so you can track the status of your application online.
This is usually followed by a waiting period, after which point you’ll be mailed an appointment date for your biometrics. During your biometrics appointment, you’ll have your photograph and fingerprints taken. The USCIS will conduct a background check and then schedule an interview at the closest office to your place of residence.
Your attorney may come with you to the interview for support. During the interview, you’ll be tested in reading, writing, speaking, and US civics and history. An immigration officer will go over all the information on your N-400 application to make sure everything is still up to date. By the end of the interview, you will know whether you are going to be recommended for naturalization approval and given a date to swear your oath if so.
This is the final step to the naturalization process. Within 30 days of your interview, you’ll receive a notice with the date that you’ll be sworn in. You may arrive at that location at the appointed time and swear your oath of citizenship. Congratulations! As of this point, you are a US citizen.
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