I am often asked how to file for naturalization. In order to obtain U.S. citizenship through naturalization, you must fill out the necessary paperwork with the U.S. government. The USCIS provides all the forms online and instructions on how to fill them out. Becoming a naturalized citizen may take time, but if you are detailed, timely and patient you can accomplish this.
Here are some of the steps to becoming a U.S. citizen through naturalization (Immigration and Nationality Act) or here is how to file for naturalization
1) File by filling out form N-400, Application for Naturalization (form on the USCIS website)
– Includes 10 pages and 8 pages of instructions
– There are several addresses where you can mail this form depending on where you live. Please check the USCIS website for more information.
– Pay the filing fee of $595 (an extra $85 for biometric fee where applicable) . Members of the military are not required to pay this fee. Those over 75 years old do not have to pay the biometric fee.
2) You must take a test that includes U.S. history, English and civics questions. Take advantage of what the USCIS website has to offer to help you prepare for the test.
– Take the naturalization self test. This self test is a study tool to help you gain knowledge on U.S. government and history. This test is multiple choice .The actual test is not multiple choice but an oral exam. You will be asked ten questions out of 100 during the interview. You must answer six out of ten questions in order to pass.
3) Study for the naturalization test. This includes English and civics. The English portion includes reading, writing and speaking. The civics test covers important U.S. history and government topics. The USCIS website provides you study materials for both the English and civics portions.
– Reading: You will be required to read out loud one out of three sentences. This demonstrates your ability to read English.
– Writing: You must write one out of three sentences. This demonstrates your ability to write in English. The writing test vocabulary list on the USCIS website will help you study for this portion.
– Civics: This portion includes 100 questions. You must answer ten questions from the list of 100 during your naturalization interview. Answer at least six out of ten questions correctly in order to pass.
Continuing with our blog post on how to file for naturalization, you may qualify for naturalization if you have been a permanent resident for at least five years and meet all other eligibility requirements according to law. You may also qualify if you have been a permanent resident for three years and meet all other eligibility requirements to file as a spouse of a U.S. citizen. Also, if you are a member of the military you may qualify if you meet eligibility requirements. If you are already a U.S. citizen and your children we born outside the U.S., they may qualify for naturalization. Make sure to review the USCIS Policy Manual Citizenship and Naturalization Guidance as well as the USCIS’ “A Guide to Naturalization”. It’s important to fill out all forms that are required for naturalization to make the process as smooth as possible.
Now that you have read this blog post on how to file for naturalization you should still consult with an immigration attorney. The area of naturalization can be complicated and not only can your case be denied you can lose your green card in certain circumstances. You may always call our office for advice on the naturalization process.
Lawrence Gruner is an immigration attorney, a fiancé visa attorney, and green card attorney with almost 20 years of experience handling immigration cases. He would be happy to talk to you about your immigration options. He may be reached at 888-801-6558.
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