The US is famous for attracting immigrants from all over the world who want to lead a better life. The US is a large and diverse country with lots of career opportunities, so many youngsters want to go and settle in the US. It is also known as a melting pot because people from different ethnic groups are residing there. Getting a tourist visa is a tedious job so let’s check out how to become a US citizen. Before that, take a quick look at some of the benefits of becoming a US citizen.
1. Eligible to cast a vote
2. Hold and run public office
3. Traveling overseas for more than 6 months
4. Get employment and enjoy federal benefits.
5. No risk of deportation.
6. Sponsor other family members for green card status.
7. Tax laws benefit.
8. Eligible for scholarships, monetary awards, and government grants.
How Long Does it Take to Become a U.S. Citizen?
The process to gain US citizenship all depends upon circumstances. You can get citizenship in a year or it might take several years. It all depends upon the location from which you are applying. If your parents are not USA-born, then you need to migrate to the USA to get a permanent residency. You are required to live for 5 continuous years and apply for naturalization. If you are married to a US citizen or if you are a part of the United States Armed Forces, then the time required is 2 years.
The process of getting US citizenship starts with filing Form N-400 and you need to pay the required fees. This initial step takes a time of 6 months to 1 year or more. For the processing of this application, you can take the assistance of certified translators and immigration lawyers because any error in this form will extend the processing period. After the processing of your application, the US Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) will approve your application after reviewing it. Once the application is reviewed, you will get a notice from the agency. They will tell you about the schedule of the immigration test and interview. The waiting list depends upon where you are present because there are long waiting lists in some regions. After passing the exam and interview, you need to wait for 180 days or about two years. The final step of getting the U.S citizenship includes taking the oath. After taking the oath ceremony, you will get the certificate of naturalization.
The Process to Become a U.S Citizen
If you want to become a citizen of the USA then you need to follow these seven steps.
Check out Your Eligibility
1. At the time of application, you should be at least 18 years old.
2. You should be a green card holder or a permanent resident for five years.
3. You should possess good moral character.
4. Enjoyed the residency in the USA for 5 years and physically present in the US.
5. You should possess a great knowledge of the English language.
6. Want to take an Oath of allegiance
Overcome Barriers If you are not Eligible
Before filling out the application, you need to find whether you are eligible to become a US citizen or not. Your application can be rejected if you have spent a long time outside the United States. If the application is denied then you need to provide additional documents to USCIS for the consideration of the case. Some applicant cases are delayed with a continued status. Here additional documents are required to pursue the case. Applications with denied notice are ineligible for citizenship.
Filing USCIS form N-400
The request for US citizenship starts with the filing of the USCIS form also known as the application for naturalization. There are certain steps involved in completing the naturalization process. This application requires the attachment of two passport size photographs and other supporting documents. When this form is filed with USCIS, they issue you a receipt for the record. You can monitor the progress of the application online. The National Customer Service Center also provides you with a direct number to inquire about application status.
Submit Biometric Services
When you receive the receipt of the application by USCIS then you have to visit the local application support center on the required date and time to submit biometric services. In the meantime, USCIS will conduct a background check to check the information provided in the application form. There is the possibility that USCIS asks you to provide more additional documents. You need to submit the required documents and comply with N-400 instructions in the specified time instructed by them.
Appear in the Exam and Interview
If there are no discrepancies present in all your documents and background check then the USCIS will send you an interview appointment letter. You need to go through all the information that you have provided in your documents to clear the exam and interview. It is recommended to reach 30 minutes before your interview time and bring your USCIS letter with you. Along with the letter you need to bring your identification photos and other supporting documents that you have submitted with the USCIS letter. If you clear the test, you will be informed on the same day or a few days later.
Attend the Oath-Taking Ceremony
After qualifying the test, the USCIS will send a letter to a person informing them about the date, time, and location of the oath-taking ceremony. You should be formally dressed and reach the venue 30 minutes before the time given. After reaching there, you need to register and return the green card to USCIS. After that, you can take an oath of allegiance with other applicants. The receiving of the certificate of naturalization will confirm that you are a legitimate citizen of the United States.
The process of getting US citizenship might seem to be a lengthy process but if you understand the requirement of all the important documents and comply with USCIS instructions, you can become a citizen of the US in minimum time. If you are facing a language obstacle in understanding the procedures for citizenship then you can take the assistance of CCJK. We have a team of native translators that can provide you with seamless translation services in a swift turnaround time.