If you have been continually residing in the United States as a permanent resident for 5 years (or 3 years in some circumstances), you may be able to apply to become a naturalized U.S. citizen.
The process begins by filing an application for naturalization (form N-400) with United States Customs and Immigration (USCIS). Later you will have to attend an interview and demonstrate basic knowledge of the English language as well as U.S. history and government.
There are several important issues to be aware of and to discuss with an attorney:
- In order for you to naturalize, the government must be convinced that you are a person of “good moral character.” Among other things, having a criminal record can affect this determination.
- When you become a U.S. citizen, any pending visa petitions you filed for a spouse or child while you were a permanent resident may be automatically converted to a different visa category. In certain circumstances, you may have to file a new visa petition after you naturalize.
If you would like to discuss your options, contact us today to set up a consultation.
The above information is provided for informational purposes only, and does not constitute legal advice.