How to Become a U.S. Citizen

Are you eligible for U.S. citizenship?

U.S. citizenship gives a foreign alien all the same rights and freedoms as a naturally born citizen. These include the right to petition family members to immigrate and the right to vote and travel or live abroad without losing citizenship. Newfound citizens are also eligible for tax benefits and government benefits. For these reasons, citizenship is not easily obtained.

If you want to become a United States citizen, it is in your best interest to seek legal guidance from one of the Orange County immigration lawyers at The Office of Bruce C. Bridgman. This can be an arduous process at times, but with our guidance, it can be relatively stress-free. In order to achieve naturalization, you must first meet all of the necessary requirements:

  • Permanent residency in the U.S. for five years
  • No absences for over a year during those five years
  • Must be a resident of a "home state" for three months
  • Must be at least 18 years old
  • Must establish good moral character
  • Must pass English efficiency tests

The immigration courts will require specific documentation to verify that you meet these requirements. If you are unfamiliar with the correct documentation, you could spend unnecessary amounts of time in and out of the courtroom. At The Law Office of Bruce C. Bridgman, our skilled team of Orange County immigration attorneys is familiar with all of the steps required of you to complete this process. You may run into court clerks or officers who will unjustly prolong your naturalization process. By hiring one of our citizenship lawyers, you will be protected from any such mistreatment.

How to Apply for United States Citizenship

In order to initiate the process, you must first complete your Form-400 on USCIS.gov and send it in to your local USCIS office, along with a copy of your green card, photos and the application fee. After several months, if there were no discrepancies with your application, you will be called in for your fingerprints and to set up an interview appointment. At the interview, your English language competence will be tested by a USCIS officer, as well as your knowledge of United States government and history. If you are disabled, be sure to ask for necessary accommodations at the interview.

If for some reason you don't pass your interview, you'll need to ask the USCIS officer for a results sheet. The officer will also give you a "Form N-14," which lists any required documentation that you may have failed to present. If anything is unclear, be sure to ask the USCIS officer before leaving. You will be allowed to come in for a second interview within 90 days. Once you pass the interview, you will be invited to your "swearing in" ceremony, where you will officially become a citizen. Once you are sworn in, you may petition to have members of your family join you in the U.S.

Hire an Orange County Immigration & Citizenship Lawyer

If you are unfamiliar with naturalization proceedings, achieving citizenship can be quite difficult. Your lawyer will ensure a swift process by making sure you have filled out all of the necessary paperwork and completed all of the required steps in a timely manner. If there is any backlash from the courts, or problems with your documentation, we will be prepared to do whatever is necessary to set the matter straight and move on. The team at The Law Office of Bruce C. Bridgman has had years of experience helping countless individuals in all types of immigration situations.

If you want to become an American citizen, please contact The Law Office of Bruce C. Bridgman today for more information. Initial consultations are free!

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