What Happens if my Citizenship is Denied?

applying for citizenship USA


Many people dream of immigrating to the United States with hopes of a better life as a citizen. However easy it might look on paper, applying for citizenship in the US is no simple feat. Plenty could go wrong along the way and you can find your citizenship application rejected. 

It is important to be aware of the processes involved in naturalization prior to applying for citizenship, along with the requirements for you to pass your citizenship tests and interviews. Knowledge of the factors that contribute to your citizenship being declined is also important to avoid making these mistakes and ensure that your application for United States citizenship goes smoothly. 

Of course, taking all this knowledge about immigration law when applying for citizenship in the US can seem quite daunting. To ease your worries, it’s best to consult with an experienced immigration lawyer in Texas who can help explain complex concepts and walk you through the naturalization process with ease. 

Naturalization Process

Before getting into the details that result in rejection of citizenship, it is important to understand the concept of naturalization. Naturalization is when an individual born and residing outside of the United States becomes a citizen. Adults take five years to complete the naturalization process before becoming a U.S. citizen. 

There are plenty of ways to become an American citizen apart from being native-born or born in an American military base. An individual who is born to a US citizen can start applying for citizenship in the USA. One can also obtain citizenship by marriage. Spouses of US citizens who have been green card holders for three years and have been living with the US citizen within the said duration are eligible for naturalization. 

Applicants must adhere to the 10-step naturalization process when applying for citizenship in the USA. The process entails the determination of one’s eligibility for American citizenship, completion of the N-400 or the naturalization form, and taking the English and civics examinations. 

To ensure that your application for citizenship in the USA goes smoothly, secure the assistance of a Shenandoah immigration lawyer immediately.

Requirements for Becoming a Citizen

There are certain requirements and steps you must follow before obtaining citizenship. When applying for citizenship in the USA, an officer from the USCIS will conduct a background check and application interview. This procedure is followed by a language exam to test your proficiency in the English language and a civics exam.  Upon passing your interview and exam, you will be scheduled to take an Oath of Allegiance, which is the final step in becoming an American citizen. 

Benefits of Becoming a US Citizen

Once you become a US citizen, there are certain benefits that you can obtain. Among the privileges citizens of the United States enjoy are the right to vote in local and national elections and the protection of your children from deportation. Naturalized citizens also become eligible for government jobs and enjoy the freedom to travel to any destination without any restrictions. Other benefits of becoming citizens in the United States include health benefits. 

Grounds for Denying Citizenship

While you might think that applying for citizenship in the USA will go as smoothly as it does on paper, you could be sorely mistaken. There are plenty of instances wherein one could find their naturalization applications rejected. An individual’s citizenship application can be denied if he or she doesn’t do well in the English and civics exam and fails to strike a good impression on the naturalization interview. In this instance, it is advised to have an immigration lawyer to help coach you with answering the questions and how to tackle interviews. 

If the applicant is proven to have a criminal record, this could also be grounds for denying citizenship. The USCIS performs background checks to ensure that the individuals admitted into the country are of good moral character. Cases as grave as murder can have an individual barred from entering the United States without any possibility of obtaining American citizenship. 

Other reasons for a citizenship application to be denied include an inconsistent stay in the United States, failure to pay child support, and possession of a fraudulent green card. Citizenship may also be denied if the applicant is found to have unpaid taxes. 

Registering for Selective Service is mandatory for male applicants aged 18-26. Failure to register has consequences depending on the applicant’s age but those aged 26-31 will be denied citizenship. They are only exempt from being denied if proven that their failure to register is unintentional.

Should your citizenship be denied, get legal advice from an experienced immigration lawyer who can help you with the next steps in order to obtain citizenship. 

What to Do if my Citizenship is Denied?

If your American citizenship application gets denied, there are steps you can take in order to re-apply. One could be to challenge the decision to deny your citizenship by filing a motion to re-open or a motion to reconsider. Re-opening means that you and an immigration lawyer bring forth evidence to prove that the decision to deny you can be changed. In motion to reconsider, you and your lawyer create a solid case to prove that the officer’s evaluation was faulty, hence leading to the denial of your citizenship. 

A N-366 or a Request for a Hearing on a Decision in Naturalization Proceedings should first be filed by the individual who believes that there are grounds for an appeal on the citizenship rejection. Upon filing this, the individual can request a hearing with an officer different from the one who initially reviewed their case. The applicant will then repeat the English and civics exam and the interview. If no faults are found, your application will be approved.

Should you find yourself in a situation where your citizenship application has been denied, enlist the help of an experienced immigration lawyer. The lawyer will explain all concepts to you and walk you through the process to ensure the most optimal outcome for your situation. 

Seek Legal Help

Seek an appointment with a Shenandoah, Texas Immigration law firm, Luis F. Hess, PLLC by calling (281)626-5359 and have any concerns regarding applying for citizenship in the USA resolved. The immigration lawyer can walk you through the whole naturalization process, guide you in exams and interviews, and represent you when your citizenship is denied. Schedule your consultation with Luis F. Hess, PLLC immediately.