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Understanding the naturalization process

On Behalf of | Nov 3, 2023 | Immigration

Immigrants come to the United States for many reasons, including for new opportunities. If you are an immigrant and would like to permanently live in the United States, you can complete the naturalization process which is how immigrants become U.S. citizens.

Naturalization overview

First, you will determine whether you are eligible for naturalization. You must have a green card which allows you to have permanent residency in the United States. There are several ways to obtain a green card, usually through employment, a family member or other category.

You must have also physically lived in the United States and have good moral character, meaning that you follow the law. You must pass a civics test, which tests applicants on their knowledge of the U.S. government and history and be proficient in the English language.

Once you are eligible, you can submit an application to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). USCIS will interview you and have you complete a biometrics appointment, where your fingerprints and photos are taken. If your application is approved, you will attend a ceremony to take the Oath of Allegiance.

Benefits of citizenship

The benefits of citizenship include the right to vote, protection from deportation, travel with a U.S. passport and petitioning for family members to come to the United States. You will also have access to government benefits and programs, like Social Security and medical coverage.

If you are interested in furthering your education, it may provide you with scholarships and financial aid opportunities that are available only to U.S. citizens. Finally, as a U.S. citizen you will have a sense of belonging and connection to the United States.