LAWFUL PERMANENT RESIDENTS APPLYING FOR U.S. CITIZENSHIP & NATURALIZATION
The basic eligibility requirements for Lawful Permanent Residents (i.e. Green Card Holders) who are applying for U.S. Citizenship?
If you are eighteen (18) years or older, The Law Offices of Brian T. O’Neill experienced staff can counsel and guide clients through the U.S. Citizenship & Naturalization process.
You must be a permanent resident with a valid green card for a period of the past 5 years. If married to the US Citizen, you may apply after 3 years with a valid green card. One exception, you may have served in the US Armed forces during a war, and as a result you may obtain US Citizenship without first becoming a permanent resident.
US Citizenship requires maintaining continuous residence in the USA for a least 5 years, immediately preceding the filing of citizenship. Continuous residency is not the same as being physically present in the USA. You must maintain status as a legal permanent resident/green card holder, but you do not necessarily need to be physically in the USA.
*Physical presence is established within the USA for a total of at least ONE HALF of the period of required continuance residence. Thus, you must half two and one half years for most applicants and one and half years for spouses of US Citizens.
*The applicant must have resided at least 3 months at their primary residence within the state where the citizenship application will be submitted (i.e. must reside in the jurisdiction for 90 days prior to filing).
*The applicant must be able to read, write and speak the ENGLISH language.
EXCEPTIONS include: physically unable based on disability (such a blind or deaf), or suffer from a developmental disability or mental impairment. Individuals over 50 years of age on the date of filing the citizenship application, who have lived in the USA for a total of at least 20 years, after admission to the USA as a lawful permanent resident, and those individuals who are over 55 years of age, and have been lawful permanent residents for at least 15 years.
*An applicant applying for US citizenship must have a general knowledge of the fundamentals of US History & Government.
*An applicant must be a person of Good Moral Character (i.e. criminal convictions may prevent you from applying for or eligibility for US Citizenship) and willing to abide by the principles to the US Constitution.
When can a Lawful Permanent Resident or Green Card Holder apply for US Citizenship?
*For a least 5 years
*for at least 3 years, if the applicant is married to and continues to reside with a US Citizen Spouse; or
*The applicant is currently serving honorably in the US military, with at least 1 year of service, and are applying for citizenship while in the military, or within 6 months of discharge.
*Certain spouse of US Citizens, and those who served in the US Military during a past War or are serving in combat may be able to file for citizenship.
CERTIFICATE OF UNITED STATES CITIZENSHIP
A PERSON BORN OUTSIDE THE USA TO A US Citizen Parent may have previously acquired US Citizenship. To be able to document the acquired citizenship status based on US parentage.
Who should file for a Certificate of Citizenship?
An individual may file, if trying to claim US Citizenship by law while inside the USA OR if they were born abroad to a US Citizen Parent.
If an individual is the biological or adopted child of a US Citizen parent, they were born outside the USA and they are claiming US citizenship by action of law, they automatically become a US citizen if:
An individual may also file for a Certificate of Citizenship if the following happened before their 18th birthday and prior to February 27, 2001:
If the individual is the biological child of a US Citizen, and they were born outside the USA and are claiming by having been born to a US citizen parent(s), the person automatically becomes a US Citizen at birth if:
General Guidelines of Who can file a Certificate of Citizenship?