Application to Citizenship
Application to Citizenship
What are the Benefits and Responsibilities of becoming a U.S. Citizen
Being a U.S. Citizen will provide you with many benefits such as:
- U.S. Passport: Having a U.S. passport brings many advantages including, but not limited to, being able to travel to over one-hundred and seventy-four (174) countries without needing to apply for a visa.
- Assistance from U.S. Embassies and Consulates: When traveling abroad consular officials can provide resources and legal aid. The U.S. Government may even intervene on the person’s behalf in the event of incarceration.
- The right to vote: You will have the right to take part in the U.S. national elections.
- Run for public office: As a U.S. Citizen, you will have the right to run for elected public offices.
- Great job opportunities: You will be able to work anywhere in the United States.
- Freedom to travel: U.S. Citizens, unlike Permanent Residents, do not have to maintain a residence in the U.S., they have the right to travel and stay in a foreign country as long as they wish and return at any given time.
- No deportation: As an American Citizen, you cannot be deported.
- Social benefits: You will be assigned a Social Security Number and have access to Medicare.
- Citizenship for children under the age of 18: All underaged children of naturalized American citizens will automatically receive U.S. Citizenship.
- Sponsor close relatives: As a U.S. Citizen you may sponsor your parents, children over the age of 18 (married or unmarried) and siblings to apply for Permanent Residence without having to wait for a visa.
Being a U.S. citizen also comes with some important responsibilities:
- Give up all prior allegiance to any other nation or sovereignty
- Swear allegiance to the United States
- Support and defend the Constitution and the laws of the United States
- Participate in the democratic process by registering and voting on elections
- Serve the country when required
- Respect and obey federal, state, and local laws
- Serve on a jury when required
- Respect the rights, beliefs, and opinions of others
U.S. Citizenship Requirements
To become a U.S. citizen you will need to complete form N-400, but first you must make sure you are eligible. You are eligible to apply for citizenship through the naturalization process if you:
- Are at least 18 years old
- Are a Green Cardholder
- Are able to read, write, and speak basic English
- Have a basic understanding of U.S. history and government
- Have lived for at least 3 months in the state where you will apply
- You have not spent more than one year at a time outside the U.S.
- Have resided continuously in the United States for at least 5 years as a permanent resident immediately preceding the date of filing your application
- Have been physically present in the United States for at least 30 months out of the 5 years immediately preceding the date of filing your application
- Are a person of good moral character
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