CITIZENSHIP Introduction

There is a process to become a naturalized citizen of the United States of America. This process is known as the Naturalization Process. N400 applications for naturalization forms are controlled and managed by the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services. Once citizenship is obtained, you, as a citizen of the After obtaining citizenship, you, as a American citizen will have rights that include:

  • Right to vote in elections
  • Right to participate in federal programs (i.e. Social Security)
  • Right to a US passport
  • Ability to qualify for security clearances

N400 Form - Application for Naturalization requires a payment of $595 plus a fee of $80 for biometrics. The total is $675 for the process of naturalization. The $80 fee is waived for those age 75 or greater. If filing under section 328 and 329 of the INA for military applicants, these are waived.

Notice: Please be aware that the laws and requirements for immigration are changed often.

While it is possible to complete the application process without assistance, it may be a great benefit to you to consult with a qualified immigration attorney to assist you with the latest updates to the N400 application process.



For basic eligibility to become a naturalized U.S. citizen, you must first spend at least five years as a legal permanent resident of the United States, during which you did not take any trips abroad for more than six months, and were present in the United States for not less than half of the entire period (two-and-a-half years). Additional factors, such as marriage to a U.S. citizen, may affect eligibility for citizenship. The USCIS provides an online eligibility worksheet to help people determine their eligibility.

In general, to qualify for US citizenship, the following must apply:

    • Permanent U.S. resident
    • At least 18 years of age
    • Permanent resident for at least five years
    • Resident for at least three months in the state where the application is filed
    • Physically in the United States for at least one half of the five years without leaving for any longer than a six month period
    • Reside continuously in the U.S. from the date of application to the admission to U.S. citizenship
    • Person of good moral character
    • Read and write English at an elementary level
    • Understand the basic structure of U.S. government and U.S. history

People also qualify for naturalization as a result of:

Birth in the United States. Those born in the United States are citizens regardless of the status of their parents. This is true whether the parents are citizens, green card holders, students, tourists, or illegal aliens.

Acquisition at Birth. A child born outside the United States where one or both parents are United States citizens.

Derivation Through Naturalization of Parents. A child born outside the United States may become a citizen by the naturalization of their parents.

Application Process

This guide is to help you understand the naturalization process. It is for people 18 years or older who want to become citizens of the United States.

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N400 Application Form

Use the "Application for Naturalization" (Form N-400) to become a naturalized citizen of the United States of America.

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