Tag: citizenship

Understanding Naturalization Eligibility Requirements for U.S. Citizenship

Becoming a U.S. citizen through naturalization is a significant milestone for immigrants seeking permanent residency in the United States. However, achieving citizenship status entails meeting specific eligibility criteria established by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). In this article, we will delve into the essential eligibility requirements individuals must fulfill to apply for U.S. citizenship through the naturalization process.

Residency Requirement:

  • One of the primary eligibility criteria for naturalization is maintaining lawful permanent residence (holding a Green Card) in the United States for a specified period. Typically, applicants must have resided continuously in the U.S. for at least five years, or three years if married to a U.S. citizen, prior to applying for citizenship. Exceptions to residency requirements may apply in certain cases, such as military service or employment abroad with U.S. government agencies.

Age Requirement:

  • Applicants for naturalization must be at least 18 years old at the time of filing the application. Minors under the age of 18 may become U.S. citizens through the naturalization of their parents or legal guardians.

Good Moral Character:

  • Applicants must demonstrate good moral character throughout the statutory period leading up to the naturalization application. Good moral character encompasses various factors, including but not limited to, criminal history, tax compliance, honesty, and integrity. Certain criminal convictions or involvement in unlawful activities may impact an individual’s eligibility for naturalization.

Knowledge of English and Civics:

  • Proficiency in English and a basic understanding of U.S. history and government (civics) are fundamental requirements for naturalization. Applicants must demonstrate their ability to read, write, and speak basic English, as well as pass a civics test covering topics such as the Constitution, the branches of government, and American history. Some applicants may qualify for exemptions or accommodations based on age, physical or mental disabilities, or prolonged residency in the U.S.

Continuous Residence and Physical Presence:

  • In addition to meeting the residency requirement, applicants must maintain continuous residence and physical presence in the United States throughout the naturalization process. Extended absences from the country may disrupt the continuity of residence and could affect an applicant’s eligibility for citizenship.

Understanding and satisfying these eligibility requirements is crucial for individuals aspiring to become U.S. citizens through naturalization. Applicants are encouraged to thoroughly review the USCIS guidelines, seek legal advice if needed, and prepare diligently for the naturalization process.

In conclusion, the path to U.S. citizenship through naturalization requires adherence to specific eligibility criteria, including residency, age, good moral character, and knowledge of English and civics. By fulfilling these requirements and navigating the naturalization process with diligence and determination, individuals can achieve their goal of becoming proud citizens of the United States of America.

 

Navigating the U.S. Citizenship Application Process: A Comprehensive Guide

Becoming a citizen of the United States is a significant milestone for immigrants seeking to fully integrate into American society. The application process for U.S. citizenship, also known as naturalization, involves several steps, documentation requirements, and forms. In this blog post, we’ll provide an overview of the application process, including the necessary forms, documentation, fees, and steps involved in submitting an application to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Understanding the Application Process:

Eligibility Verification:

Before beginning the application process, applicants must ensure they meet the eligibility criteria for naturalization, including residency, age, good moral character, and knowledge of English and civics.

Complete the Form N-400:

The Form N-400, Application for Naturalization, is the official application for U.S. citizenship through naturalization. Applicants must accurately and completely fill out the form, providing detailed information about their background, residency, employment history, and more.

Gather Required Documentation:

Along with the Form N-400, applicants must submit supporting documentation to verify their eligibility for naturalization. Common documents include a copy of their Green Card, passport-style photos, proof of residency, marital status documents (if applicable), and any other relevant supporting evidence.

Pay Application Fees:

There are several fees associated with the naturalization application process, including the application fee and biometric services fee. Fee waivers may be available for eligible applicants based on financial hardship.

Submit the Application to USCIS:

Once the Form N-400 and supporting documentation are completed, applicants must submit their application package to the appropriate USCIS service center. The USCIS website provides detailed instructions on where to mail the application based on the applicant’s place of residence.

Attend Biometrics Appointment:

After USCIS receives the application, applicants will be scheduled for a biometrics appointment at a local Application Support Center (ASC). During the appointment, applicants will provide fingerprints, photographs, and signature verification for background checks.

Attend the Naturalization Interview:

Upon successful completion of the biometrics appointment, applicants will be scheduled for a naturalization interview with a USCIS officer. During the interview, the officer will review the applicant’s Form N-400, assess their eligibility, and test their knowledge of English and civics.

Receive a Decision:

Following the naturalization interview, applicants will receive a decision from USCIS regarding their application for citizenship. If approved, applicants will be scheduled for a citizenship oath ceremony to take the Oath of Allegiance and officially become U.S. citizens.

Navigating the U.S. citizenship application process can be complex, but with careful preparation and attention to detail, aspiring citizens can successfully complete the journey to naturalization. For detailed guidance and resources, consult with an immigration attorney for assistance.

Embarking on the path to U.S. citizenship is a momentous occasion, representing the fulfillment of the American Dream and a commitment to the values and principles of the United States of America.

 

Embracing Dual Citizenship and Renunciation: Navigating the Path to U.S. Citizenship

In today’s interconnected world, the concept of citizenship is evolving, allowing individuals to hold citizenship in more than one country simultaneously. Dual citizenship offers numerous benefits, including expanded travel and work opportunities, cultural connections, and the ability to maintain ties with one’s country of origin. In this blog post, we’ll explore the concept of dual citizenship, the process for individuals holding citizenship in another country to become U.S. citizens, and the steps involved in renouncing citizenship from another country to embrace U.S. citizenship.

Understanding Dual Citizenship:

Dual citizenship, also known as dual nationality, occurs when an individual is recognized as a citizen by more than one country. This recognition allows individuals to enjoy the rights and privileges of citizenship in multiple nations simultaneously. Many countries, including the United States, recognize and accept the concept of dual citizenship, enabling individuals to maintain connections to their heritage while embracing new opportunities in their adopted countries.

Process for Individuals to Become U.S. Citizens:

  • Naturalization Process: Individuals holding citizenship in another country can pursue U.S. citizenship through the naturalization process. This process involves meeting eligibility requirements, including residency, good moral character, knowledge of English and civics, and adherence to U.S. laws and principles.
  • Completing Form N-400: Eligible applicants must complete Form N-400, Application for Naturalization, and submit it to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) along with supporting documentation and applicable fees.
  • Naturalization Interview and Examination: Applicants undergo a naturalization interview and examination, during which they demonstrate proficiency in English and civics and provide evidence of their eligibility for U.S. citizenship.
  • Taking the Oath of Allegiance: Upon approval of the naturalization application, applicants attend a citizenship oath ceremony where they swear allegiance to the United States and officially become U.S. citizens.

Process of Renouncing Citizenship:

While many individuals embrace dual citizenship, some may choose to renounce citizenship from another country to fully commit to their U.S. citizenship. Renunciation is a formal process that involves voluntarily relinquishing citizenship in another country.

  • Contacting Consulate or Embassy: Individuals wishing to renounce citizenship should contact the consulate or embassy of their country of citizenship to initiate the renunciation process and obtain guidance on required documentation and procedures.
  • Completing Renunciation Forms: Renunciation typically involves completing specific forms provided by the consulate or embassy and submitting supporting documentation, such as proof of identity and citizenship.
  • Renunciation Oath: Some countries require individuals to swear an oath of renunciation before a consular official or in front of witnesses to formalize the renunciation process.
  • Acknowledgment of Renunciation: Once the renunciation process is complete, individuals receive an acknowledgment or certificate confirming the renunciation of citizenship from the respective country.

Dual citizenship and renunciation represent personal choices that individuals make based on their unique circumstances, values, and aspirations. Whether embracing dual citizenship to maintain cultural ties or renouncing citizenship to fully commit to U.S. citizenship, individuals have the freedom to navigate their citizenship journey in alignment with their beliefs and priorities.

In conclusion, the concepts of dual citizenship and renunciation underscore the dynamic nature of citizenship in today’s globalized world. By understanding the processes and implications of dual citizenship and renunciation, individuals can make informed decisions that reflect their identity, values, and aspirations on their journey to embracing U.S. citizenship.

Have you worked in the US without permission?

Worked in the US without permission? Understand the implications and the importance of disclosure in immigration applications in this article.This won’t be a problem for a spouse of a US citizen UNLESS the person worked without permission and then did NOT disclose that fact when asked about it on an online immigration application, paper submitted application, or in person with an immigration official. A common situation is for a student on an F-visa to babysit while he is in school, and then not disclose that when asked about it on an online immigration application, paper submitted application, or in person with an immigration official. If you’re asked by a US immigration official about unauthorized work and you lie, you may turn a non-problem (the work) into a big problem (lying, fraud, misrepresentation).

If you need to talk to an experienced immigration attorney. We’ve helped hundreds of people traverse the complicated immigration and citizenship process. We would love to help you as well.  Call (617-766-0214) or email hello@cambridgeimmigrationlaw.com to get in touch.

 

Can I renew my two year green card if I am no longer with my spouse?

 

 

Renew your green card through marriage after separation with Form I-751 and a waiver. Get legal help.If you obtained your two-year green card through marriage and you are no longer with your spouse, you may still be able to renew your green card by filing Form I-751, Petition to Remove Conditions on Residence. If you are successful, USCIS will grant you a 10-year green card (Form I-551)! To be successful on this application, you will need to show that yours was a “real” (aka bona fide) relationship and marriage. Or, in other words, you need to prove to USCIS that you did not get married just to get a green card.  

 

 

To renew your green card if you are separated from your spouse, you will need to file the Form I-751 jointly with your former spouse. However, if your spouse refuses to sign Form I-751, then you will have to qualify for a waiver to get your Form I-751 approved and your green card renewed for 10 years. You can request for a waiver based on one of the following grounds:

  1. Your spouse has died;
  2. Your marriage was real but your married is legally ended by divorce or annulment;
  3. Your marriage was real, but your US citizen spouse (or green card holding spouse) abused you physically, sexually, financially, or emotionally; or
  4. You will suffer extreme hardship if your green card is not renewed for 10 years.

To win a waiver case, you must not only prove it was a “real marriage” but you also need to prove the other issue of death, divorce, abuse, or extreme hardship. Waiver applications are difficult to prepare and win, and USCIS is always looking for fraud in I-751 waiver applications. Don’t file a waiver application without an experienced immigration attorney!

 

If you need to talk to an experienced immigration attorney. We’ve helped hundreds of people traverse the complicated immigration and citizenship process. We would love to help you as well.  Call (617-766-0214) or email hello@cambridgeimmigrationlaw.com to get in touch.

Fiance Visa to Citizenship

From Fiance visa to citizenshipOur client of many years recently got their Citizenship Application approved! When they came to us, they were a newly engaged couple who had experienced some complications with their Fiancé Visa application.  They decided that they couldn’t wait to get married so we filed an I-130 instead.  Once their application was approved, we worked with them on the National Visa Center applications and prepared them for the Embassy Interview.  Not long after that, the couple was reunited in Massachusetts!  A couple of years later we submitted their I-751 application.  While their I-751 was still pending we submitted their Citizenship Application.  On the day of the interview, both the I-751 and the N-400 were approved! All these years later and the newly engaged couple has grown into a happily married family of four.

 

If you need to talk to an experienced immigration attorney. We’ve helped hundreds of people traverse the complicated immigration and citizenship process. We would love to help you as well.  Call (617-272-7980) or email hello@cambridgeimmigrationlaw.com to get in touch.

US citizenship in less than 3 months

This week one of our clients became a US citizen in less than three months. She had been a permanent resident for more than 5 years and decided that it was time to take the next step in her immigration process. We immediately began to work with her and submitted a strong application to USCIS on her behalf. She was scheduled for her Naturalization interview within 3 months. Our attorney prepared our client for her naturalization interview and went with her to the interview. The attorney was with our client through the whole interview process to make sure everything went smoothly. Our client’s naturalization application was approved the same day. She is now a United States citizen, in what we consider record time.

 

If you need to talk to an experienced immigration attorney. We’ve helped hundreds of people traverse the complicated immigration and citizenship process. We would love to help you as well.  Call (617-272-7980) or email hello@cambridgeimmigrationlaw.com to get in touch.

Expedited Travel Document and Green Card in One Visit

Expedited Travel Document and Green Card in One Visit

Recently, we were able to help one of our clients to get approval on her green card and expedited travel documents. She got a change to visit their very ill mother in India. Our client was waiting on a pending green card application and urgently needed to leave the country. She wanted to see her ill mother and to take care of her. Our attorney was able to get her an appointment to request to expedite her application for a travel document at USCIS. The appointment went so well that not only did our client leave with an approved travel document,  which allowed her to leave the country to visit her mother, she also left the appointment with an approved green card!

 

If you need to talk to an experienced immigration attorney. We’ve helped hundreds of couples traverse the complicated immigration and citizenship process. We would love to help you as well.  Call 617-714-4375 or email hello@cambridgeimmigrationlaw.com to get in touch.

Peace of Mind After 11 Years!

Green card approved after winning the removal proceedings

This week our firm obtained a big win for one of our clients at their removal hearing. Our client had been in removal proceedings since 2011. Our client suffered 11 years of stress because of the removal proceedings.

Our attorney was able to gather strong evidence and argued a strong compelling argument in favor of our client. The court granted our client his green card. Not only will our client get his green card, but he will also have peace of mind and the opportunity to build a future in the United States.

 

If you and your partner are beginning the green card process as an affianced couple or as a married couple, you should discuss your situation with an experienced immigration attorney. We’ve helped hundreds of couples traverse the complicated immigration and citizenship process. We would love to help you as well. Call 617-714-4375 or email hello@cambridgeimmigrationlaw.com to get in touch.

USCIS may reopen on June 4 for US naturalizations/citizenship

Today I received a message from the New England Chapter of AILA (American Immigration Lawyers Association) informing me that USCIS offices in Massachusetts plan to bring workers back into its offices on June 1 and reopen to the public on June 4 for limited services.

Once reopened, USCIS will focus on scheduled small-batch US naturalization ceremonies. Also, USCIS will begin scheduling N-400 interviews.

We do not have information about when green-card/adjustment interviews, biometrics, or other in-person services will resume in Massachusetts.

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You should consult with an attorney to figure out if you are eligible for a green card before you submit any applications or documents to the U.S. government.