US Citizenship Through Naturalization
Naturalization refers to the process in which a foreign citizen or national voluntarily attains US citizenship. The foreigner must complete all of the requirements that are set forth by the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).
Qualifications for US Citizenship Through Naturalization
Citizens or nationalists of foreign countries may be eligible for Naturalization if they meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Have been permanent resident of the US for a minimum of 5 years.
- A minimum of 18 years of age at the time they file for Naturalization.
- Illustrate that they have lived in the United States for a minimum of 5 years right before applying for Naturalization.
- Demonstrate that they have been in the US for a minimum of 30 months of the 5 years immediately prior to filing for Naturalization.
- Demonstrate that they have resided in the state or USCIS districted where they are applying for Naturalization for a minimum of 3 months.
- Demonstrate their moral character.
- Pass a citizenship examination
More information about eligibility requirements for US Naturalization can be found here.
The process of filing for US Naturalization involves the following:
- Foreigners must complete and file Form N-400, the Application for Naturalization.
- Secure two pictures of oneself, and those pictures must meet the requirements set forth by immigration.
- Support documents must be collected.
- Application and fees must be filed.
- Complete the fingerprinting process.
- Complete and interview and test.
- Take an oath of allegiance to the United States
The amount of time it will take to complete the naturalization process varies for each applicant. On average, for individuals who are eligible and who have properly filed all necessary forms and documentation and who hail from locations that are generally considered low fraud areas, the time it takes for a Naturalization application to be completed is between 5 and 6 months.
The Naturalization timeline is as follows:
- An initial Notice of Action is sent after the N-400 file has been received by the USCIS.
- A second Notice of Action from the USCIS will notify the applicant of the date, time, and biometrics appointment.
- Completion of a mandatory USCIS Naturalization interview.
- Applicant attends an interview, during which time he or she will be notified whether the Naturalization application was granted, continued, or denied.
- Applicants must complete an Oath of Allegiance ceremony. After completing the ceremony, a Certificate of Naturalization will be granted to the individual..