Scarborough Law, LLC – Immigration Consultant – Jacksonville FL
The process of naturalization is a means by which an individual who was not born in the United States can become a US citizen. It is the preferred path to citizenship chosen by many every year. The opportunity to become a citizen is not extended to everyone, but is typically available to those who have already held a US green card, have learned at least basic English, and can meet various other requirements. In general, there are approximately 10 steps in the process toward citizenship via naturalization. If you are seeking citizenship through naturalization you should meet with a naturalization consultant or immigration consultant in Jacksonville FL. Stephanie Scarborough and her experienced team of attorneys at Scarborough Law, LLC are ready to assist you with all of your immigration and naturalization needs.
As you might imagine, there is a process that must be followed in order to obtain naturalization status, and you’ll benefit from working with an immigration consultant or naturalization consultant. Whether you’re near our offices in Jacksonville, FL or Alpharetta, GA, or another location, Scarborough Law, LLC can help. We have assisted countless families with their immigration and naturalization issues over the years, and it is actually one of our favorite areas of law because we love bringing families together. We understand that naturalization and citizenship is an important issue for you and your family and that’s why we take great care with every client’s case, to ensure that they will have the absolute best options to provide the security for their family that citizenship through naturalization can bring. Contact Stephanie Scarborough, your naturalization consultant and immigration consultant, at Stephanie Scarborough, LLC today and let her get to work for you immediately.
Meeting the Criteria for Citizenship Through Naturalization
As we mentioned above, there is a process that everyone seeking naturalization must follow and that process includes multiple, basic requirements, standard criteria that must be met in order to qualify for naturalization that leads to citizenship. Let’s look at some of the criteria.
An applicant must be at least 18 years old at the time they file their application.
Green Card/Permanent Resident Status
In most cases, to be eligible for citizenship through naturalization, an applicant must demonstrate that they have been a permanent resident (green card holder) for a period of 5 years. However, there are certain special circumstances that could allow for early application.
Some Possible Special Circumstances:
- Spouse of US citizen in marriage which the parties lived together for at least 3 yrs.
- A battered spouse, even cases in which the parties are now separated or divorced
- Refugees or people seeking political asylum
- A member of the US military or the widow or widower of a deceased US military
- A spouse of a US citizen in a job overseas (restrictions may apply)
NOTE: Regardless of whether you meet any of the special requirements necessary for early applicant consideration, everyone applying can still file their citizenship application 90 days in advance of the date that the required permanent resident years mature. This is because the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) may not be able to respond to your application for that period of time, or potentially longer due to the enormous amount of applications they process annually.
This refers to those applicants who have been ‘physically present,’ meaning that they resided in the United States for, at minimum, half of their required years of permanent residence.
An applicant must demonstrate that they have been physically present in the United States for a minimum of 30 months, of the 5 required years, directly before the date they file their Form N-400.
An applicant must demonstrate they have lived in the state or USCIS district where they are applying for a minimum of 3 months. Special rules may apply for students, consult with your naturalization consultant or immigration consultant for more information.
An applicant must demonstrate they have been ‘continuously present’ in the United States, meaning they have not been outside of the US for extended periods of time (6 months, or more). It is important to note that extended stays outside of the US may draw attention to your green card status as well, so not only may you be jeopardizing your potential citizenship, but you could also possibly lose your green card status.
All applicants must demonstrate that they are of good moral character, and have been. Therefore, prior actions or instances could come into play when your application is being considered. This is another reason, of the many, that you should work with an immigration consultant in Jacksonville FL. You need to be sure nothing is on your record that could be seen as a red flag and potentially harm your chances of being viewed as a good applicant.
Every applicant must be able to read, write, and speak at least basic English, and you will have to undergo testing during your naturalization interview at the USCIS office to prove this.
US History & Government
Applicants must pass a basic oral exam covering US history and government.
Loyalty & Military Service
Applicants must pledge that they will be loyal to the United States and serve in the US military if necessary.
Ceremony & Oath
After the process is complete, successful applicants will attend an official swearing-in ceremony at which time they will take the Oath of Allegiance to the United States.
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