If you have immigrated to the United States American citizenship is probably your ultimate goal. Exercising that option should be considered for any eligible person who plans to spend their life in the United States. While remaining a permanent resident may seem like a decent option for some, it is not recommended. Permanent Residents have less legal protections and rights than United States citizens do. Their right to remain in the United States is subject to political changes and as such is less stable than United States citizens. Permanent Residents can be removed (deported) from the United States for a variety of infractions that can be changed by Congress at any time.
To become a United States citizen one must meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Be at least 18 years old at the time of filing the Application.
- Be a legal permanent resident of the United States at least 3 or 5 years depending on the situation.
- Physical presence in the United States for at least 5 years before filing the application.
- Continuous presence in the United States for at least 30 months out of the 5 years before filing the application.
- Live at least 3 months in the state where applying for citizenship.
- Have good moral character
- Ability to read, write and speak English
- Ability to pass a civics test
- Swear an oath of allegiance to the United States
*United States law permits multiple citizenship. Thus, a citizen of another country may obtain U.S, citizenship while retaining their previous citizenship.
Other than the legal protections mentioned above, U.S. Citizens hold some benefits that are exclusive to citizens. Some of these benefits include:
- The right to vote- the right to vote for federal office in all states is restrictive to citizens only.
- Eligibility for Federal Jobs- most jobs at government agencies require U.S. citizenship
- Eligibility for financial aid- many financial aid grants given by the government for specific purposes are only available to U.S. citizens
- Freedom to enter and leave the United States without restriction on the time permitted to spend outside of the United States.
Leave the process to an Immigration Professional
While the above requirements may seem straightforward, there are many intricacies involved in the application process and often times an applicant may get denied despite meeting the above requirements if any parts of the application are filled out incorrectly. This may set applicants back months if not completely ruin their chances of a second application. Since the process is complex and the outcome is vitally important, it is recommended to hire an experienced immigration attorney to navigate this complex process for you. We are a full service immigration law-firm that practices exclusively in immigration matters and will be happy to discuss the specifics of your case with you. Contact us by phone or email today to schedule a consultation with Shirley Reginiano, Esq.
Why should you hire Immigration Lawyer Shirley Reginiano?
- Avoid costly mistakes and delays in dealing with the USCIS
- Experienced immigration attorney who deals exclusively in immigration matters prepares and file your case, not a Notorio or Paralegal.
- Access to legal advice from the comfort of your home or office
- Low, Flat Fee with no hidden costs.
- Full Review of your particular circumstances
- Confirmation that a Citizenship filing is appropriate for you
- Checklist of documents that you need for your Citizenship Application
- Complete & Accurate preparation of your Citizenship application
- Submission of your Citizenship application to the appropriate government agencies
- Timely correspondence with government agencies handling your application
- Expert advise on what to expect at the USCIS interview