Law Offices Charles D. Soule Esq New York Immigration Corporate Entertainment Lawyer
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    • Employment-Based Green Cards
    • Family-Based Green Cards
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To be able to vote, hold public office, or serve on a jury, a person must be a United States citizen. Citizenship may be acquired in one of two ways; either as a natural citizen or a naturalized citizen. Those who obtain their citizenship at birth are referred to as natural citizens, while those who become citizens at some time after their birth are referred to as naturalized citizens.

The process by which people from foreign countries become U.S. citizens is called naturalization. There are three steps in this process:

  1. File an application on form N-400.
  2. Take a naturalization examination.
  3. Participate in an Oath Ceremony

Not everyone, however, is eligible to become a naturalized U.S. citizen. A person must meet certain requirements:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • A lawful permanent resident for five years
  • You have been a permanent resident for 3 years or more and meet all eligibility requirements to file as a spouse of a U.S. citizen.
  • You have qualifying service in the U.S. armed forces and meet all other eligibility requirements.
  • Your child may qualify for naturalization if you are a U.S. citizen, the child was born outside the U.S., the child is currently residing outside the U.S., and all other eligibility requirements are met. 
  • A person of good moral character
  • Be able to understand, read, write, and speak basic English
  • Possess a basic understanding of United States government and history
  • Be willing to take an oath of allegiance to the United States