Hello everyone! Here is a one-stop place to find all your information regarding how to become a naturalized citizen of the United States of America. Now, this is a long process, and is often complicated for individuals who are embarking on this journey. So, to make things a little easier, over the next couple of weeks I will have several articles explaining the process of this test, the information you need to remember, ways to study, and more. This way your route to citizenship is as easy as can be and FREE!
To start off, the citizenship test is handled by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services department. It is designed to provide individuals who were not born in the United States, or born to U.S. parents, the opportunity to be able to become legal citizens.
Your first step to citizenship will be to determine if you already are a U.S. citizen. This part is very easy. If you were born in the United States or one of the U.S. territories or have one parent that is a U.S. citizen, then you are already a citizen!
However, if you were not born in the United States or one of the U.S. territories, and do not have at least one parent that is a U.S. citizen, then you are going to have to file for naturalization citizenship.
This brings me to step two of our process. Next, you must determine whether or not you are eligible for naturalization as it stands right now. There are several things that may bar you from being eligible to apply for naturalization such as being too young, not living in the U.S. long enough, or having legal issues on your record.
To make this simple, take the short survey below and find out whether or not you are eligible to apply for naturalization. If you are not, do no worry, most of the time the issues are time sensitive, and after time passes, you can take this survey again and begin your naturalization journey at that time.
After determining if you are eligible to apply for naturalization citizenship, you will need to fill out your N-400 Form. This is the form that will be used by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services department to begin the following steps in the citizenship process.
To see what the N-400 Form will look like, click the Download Button below. More information on how to fill this out will be given in later articles as we work our way through the process.
After you have filled out your N-400, make sure to submit it along with any fees, pictures, and additional documents you may need. (More information on that to come).
The next step is to set up your biometrics appointment (more information on how to do so will be provided at a later date).
This appointment is nothing to be concerned about. According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services protocol, all applicants must have their fingerprints and photograph taken and ran through the FBI system prior to obtaining an interview.
You won’t be able to move on to the next step of the naturalization process until this data is collected, ran through the system, and returned clean.
This step is where you will interview with an officer from the Citizenship and Immigration Services Department, and will take your English test (if applicable) and Civics test. More information on these tests will be provided in later articles.
This interview will also include some clarifying questions about your N-400 Form, and the results of your interview. In this case, you will learn whether you have passed, or if you have a continuation on your naturalization.
A continuation occurs mainly when an individual failed the English or Civics test. But, it is important to note that this is not the end of the world! If you do not pass either of these tests, your citizenship application will be continued, and you will be allowed to retest in 60-90 days. Additionally, when you are retesting, you will only be tested on the section you failed, so, if you passed the English test and failed the Civics test, you will only take the Civics test when retesting.
IT IS IMPORTANT TO NOTE THAT IF YOU FAIL THE TESTS TWICE, YOUR N-400 FORM WILL BE REJECTED! So, it’s better to study up and take it once!
You will receive a written notification as to the decision made regarding your citizenship! This will either be “Granted,” or “Denied” and will specify additional information/reasoning in it.
If you are denied, your letter will have specific information in it regarding how you are able to appeal this decision. However, appeal paperwork must be submitted within 30 days of your original decision notification, so, work fast!
Next, you’ll receive a notice for the time and date of when to take your oath of allegiance to the United States. For some, this may occur on the same day of your interview, but it can also be at a later date.
Once you have taken the oath of allegiance, you will receive a Certificate of Naturalization in exchange for your Permanent Resident Card. After this is done, you are officially a legal citizen of the United States!
While this process may seem scary, it is nothing to fret over! I’m here to help, and so are the agents at the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Department.
For more information about specific pieces of the naturalization process feel free to visit the link below, or contact me using the form below!