Filing a US citizenship application can be one of the most stressful things that an immigrant will do. Those who have plans of becoming a US citizen will have to go through lengthy processing of their immigration petition and becoming a US citizen is a very long and tedious one. Any immigrant visa application or permanent resident card / green card application takes a long time. Even more, so is getting a Certificate of Citizenship. Additionally, the processes that one must go through to qualify for citizenship can be quite difficult to comprehend.
If you wish to enjoy rights and responsibilities that are reserved for US citizens, however, persistence is key. Acquiring citizenship papers may be difficult, but it is not entirely impossible. Contact a trusted Shenandoah immigration lawyer who can help explain the relevant immigration process and avoid, at all costs, mistakes that can lead to removal proceedings (deportation to your home country).
What this article will focus on are different instances where Shenandoah immigration lawyers can help a foreign national applying for citizenship. These include:
- Learning about the qualifications for becoming a citizen
- Working on USCIS forms required by the naturalization process
- Dealing with processing times for an application for naturalization
Learning about the Qualifications for Becoming a Citizen
If you are a green card holder who aspires to become a citizen of the United States, you must first be familiar with who is eligible to apply for citizenship. Qualifying for citizenship can be challenging. There are several citizenship requirements that one must meet, such as five years or more of lawful permanent resident status. Additionally, aspiring United States citizens must be 18 years old or above, must show good moral character, and must be able to take an Oath of Allegiance and state belief in the principles of the US Constitution. A dedicated Shenandoah immigration lawyer can help check your eligibility, which will be supported by the various immigration forms and paperwork necessary to become a citizen of the United States.
Working on USCIS Forms Required by the Naturalization Process
The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS Office) receives numerous applications from immigrants who wish to acquire citizenship. USCIS processing times are known to be painfully long, especially in field offices receiving a high volume of applications. It is advisable to begin your naturalization application as early as possible, which is another reason why it is important to seek legal assistance from trusted Shenandoah immigration lawyers.
A foreigner aspiring to reside in and become a citizen in the United States must first process a Form N-400 and prepare supporting documents for an eventual biometrics appointment. Aside from helping with this paperwork, you will need a lawyer who can help you prepare for your citizenship interview and US citizens test. It is important to keep in mind that the immigration interview and citizenship test are two defining parts of all citizenship applications, which is why you need to take them very seriously.
Dealing with Processing Time for an Application for Naturalization
One of the most common ways to obtain citizenship is through an application for naturalization. A foreigner who meets the minimum length of lawful permanent residence may gain citizenship by submitting necessary forms to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS Office). A citizenship application is reviewed very carefully, which is the cause of notorious processing wait times. This means that several months would pass between the time a naturalization application was filed and the actual swearing-in ceremony if your application is approved. However, if your citizenship application is taking way longer than usual, a hands-on local attorney can provide reliable legal help and check for possible errors.
Obtaining Citizenship and Getting Legal Advice
A United States citizen can benefit from lawful permanent residency and be able to exercise the right to vote in elections. Additionally, through family-based immigration, a US citizen can petition an alien family member or relative and help him or she immigrate and get a green card. Like any other petition for a change in immigration status, however, becoming citizens of the United States will involve a long and difficult journey.
The citizenship process alone can take several months, and it is not unusual for an individual to wait for a year to a year and a half before actually being able to naturalize. To increase your chances of finally getting a Certificate of Naturalization and taking the Oath of Allegiance, you will need the legal services of an expert. Someone who knows the twists and turns of immigration laws can guide you every step of the way.
If you have any legal questions related to immigrant visas, consular processing, and adjustment of status, conditional green cards, or removal of conditions, call our US immigration law firm today. Contact us at Luis F. Hess, PLLC to consult with an experienced Shenandoah immigration attorney.