The US government is only granting DACA renewals, but you can still submit a new DACA application to hold your place in line.

Citizenship and Naturalization

What Is USCIS Form N-400?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 22, 2022

Form N-400 is officially called the Application for Naturalization. You need to submit Form N-400 to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to apply for U.S. citizenship. This article will explain if you qualify to file Form N-400, how to file, how much it costs, and how long USCIS will normally take to process your Form N-400.

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What are the Requirements for Naturalization in the United States?

Written by Jonathan Petts

In addition to holding their green cards for a 3-year or 5-year minimum, lawful permanent residents of the United States must also meet specific requirements to naturalize as U.S. citizens. This article spells out each requirement for naturalization in detail, how to meet it as a naturalization applicant, and any exemptions that may apply.

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How To Get a Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA)

Written by Jonathan Petts

Many U.S. citizens and their families live and work in countries all around the world. Children born abroad to U.S. citizen parents may meet the requirements under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) for a Consular Report of Birth Abroad (CRBA). A CRBA is evidence of U.S. citizenship issued to a child of a U.S. citizen who was born abroad. This article explains the CRBA in detail, including the eligibility requirements and application process. The article also answers some frequently asked questions about CRBA.

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How To Get a Copy of a Divorce Decree

Written by Jonathan Petts

When you apply for a marriage green card, you'll have to prove to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that the marriage you're basing your application on is legitimate. You'll do this in different ways, including providing legal marriage documents showing that you share true love with your spouse. If you've been previously married, you'll also have to prove that all your previous marriages have legally ended — either by death of your spouse or divorce. This article explains how to get a copy of your divorce decree and other marriage termination documents for your marriage green card application.‍

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How to Get U.S. Citizenship if you have a Marriage Green Card

Written by Jonathan Petts

Many immigrants in the United States become citizens through the naturalization process. When you have your marriage green card, you can begin to think about naturalizing as a U.S. citizen. All lawful permanent residents can apply to become U.S. citizens. As an American citizen, you'll be eligible to vote in all state and national elections, apply for federal jobs, and live abroad however long you want. You will also never be deported from the United States as a U.S. citizen. This article explains the requirements for naturalizing as a citizen if you hold a marriage green card. It also explains the naturalization process itself.

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Forms N-600 & N-600K: How to Get U.S. Citizenship for Foreign-born Adopted Children

Written by Jonathan Petts

Many American couples adopt internationally every year. The good news is that as long as your foreign-born adopted child has at least one U.S. citizen parent, they qualify to become a U.S. citizen too. You will need to file Form N-600 or Form N-600K to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for your child. The type of form you'll have to submit will depend on where your family lives. This article will explain the different circumstances that merit your applying with either Form N-600 or N-600K.

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What to Expect at the Oath of Allegiance Ceremony

Written by Jonathan Petts

Taking the Oath of Allegiance of the United States is the final step in the citizenship by naturalization process. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will send you an appointment notice with details of when and where the ceremony will occur. You’ll have to show up smartly dressed - specifically, no jeans, shorts, or flip-flops. There’s no need to memorize the words of the Oath of Allegiance - you’ll receive a script of the oath at the ceremony. This article explains what the Oath of Allegiance is, and what happens during and after the Oath ceremony.‍

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What is the Process for Marrying a Non-U.S Citizen?

Written by Jonathan Petts

Green card holders and U.S. citizens are at liberty to marry non-U.S. citizens. Their foreign spouses can get a marriage green card and live with them in the United States. The application process looks different depending on where you and your future spouse live and your respective immigration statuses. This article explains the possibilities and considerations to keep in mind when applying for a marriage green card. Specifically, the article explains what things look like if both partners are present in the United States versus if both are not and the process if only one partner is in the United States.

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Marrying A U.S. Citizen - What You Should Know

Written by Jonathan Petts

Congratulations on finding your life partner! Now is the time to figure out the logistics of getting married to your U.S. citizen spouse. This article explains how you and your spouse can live permanently in the United States. A marriage green card allows the spouse of a U.S. citizen to live and work anywhere in the United States. The article also explains the visa considerations to bear in mind when deciding whether to get married in the United States or abroad.

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A Comprehensive Guide to the U.S. Citizenship Test

Written by Jonathan Petts

The U.S. Citizenship Test is one of the most important aspects of your citizenship application. You'll need to pass the test to become an American citizen, and you can only take the exam twice. This article is a comprehensive guide to the U.S. Citizenship Test. It explains what to expect on the test, how you should prepare, whether you can request special accommodations if you have a disability, who's exempt from taking the test, and what happens after you take it.

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What Supporting Documents Do You Need To Become a U.S. Citizen?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 2, 2022

Naturalization is the process by which an immigrant to the United States applies for U.S. citizenship. In addition to the Form N-400: Application for Naturalization, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) requires certain supporting documents. You can use this article as a document checklist for the naturalization process.

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What Are the U.S. Immigrant Visa Vaccination Requirements?

Written by Upsolve Team
Updated August 21, 2022

Immigrating to the United States is a multistep process. As part of the process, you’ll need to undergo a medical exam with an approved physician. During your medical exam, the physician will complete a vaccination chart. You’ll submit this to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) as part of your green card application. In this article, we explain the U.S. vaccination requirements. We’ll also answer some frequently asked questions about them.

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Everything You Need To Know About IR5 Visas

Written by Upsolve Team
Updated August 21, 2022

Parents of children who are U.S. citizens have a special process by which they can immigrate to the United States. This procedure often involves applying for an IR5 visa and green card at the same time. The IR5 visa allows the parent to enter the United States, while the green card gives the parent lawful permanent residency status once they arrive. Read on to learn how this IR5 visa and green card process works and what’s required to complete it.

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How To Apply for a USCIS Fee Waiver or Reduction

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 9, 2022

U.S. immigration application filing fees can be quite expensive, but if you can't afford them you have options. You may qualify for a fee waiver if your household income is at or below 150% of the federal poverty level (FPL) for your state and you are filing a qualifying form. If your household income is between 150% and 200% of the FPL for your state and you are filing a qualifying form, you may be eligible for a fee reduction. This article explains the difference between a fee reduction and a fee waiver, who qualifies, and how to apply for each.

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How To Apply for Citizenship by Naturalization

Written by Jonathan Petts

If you are a U.S. Lawful Permanent Resident (green card holder), who meets the residency and background-check requirements, you can apply for Citizenship by Naturalization. There are many benefits to becoming a U.S. citizen. For example, once you become a U.S. citizen, you will be able to vote in U.S. elections, come and go from the U.S. as you please, and apply for your eligible family members to receive U.S. green cards. The application process is pretty straightforward. For most people, it costs $725 and takes 7-15 months. This article explains how to apply for U.S. citizenship in nine easy steps.

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How To Use the State Department’s Reciprocity Schedule

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 1, 2022

Sometimes the civil documents you have to submit to support your green card application are not issued by the authorities in your home country. To help address this, the U.S. Department of State publishes a “reciprocity schedule” that you can use to determine which substitute documents the U.S. government will accept for your application. This article explains how to use the reciprocity schedule.

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What is the IR-2 immigrant visa for children of U.S. citizens?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 1, 2022

There are visas available for foreign-born children of U.S. citizens to immigrate to the United States. The IR-2 visa is an immigrant visa available only to unmarried children of U.S. citizens. This guide explains the IR-2 visa in detail. It defines who can apply for the visa, the IR-2 visa application process, the costs involved, as well as how long it takes to process IR-2 visa applications.

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Common U.S. Citizenship Interview Questions

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 1, 2022

Separate from the civics questions and English language test you have to take, the USCIS officer will ask you other questions at your citizenship interview. Many of these questions will come up from the information on your A-File, and others will be follow-ups from the information you provide. This article explains what your A-File is, and also provides a sample list of common questions you can expect at your interview.

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How To Apply for a U.S. Passport

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 1, 2022

If you recently became a U.S. citizen, congratulations! You are now eligible to apply for a U.S. passport. The U.S. passport process is very straightforward, and passport applications are processed much quicker than the other immigration applications you’ve been used to. This article is a step-by-step guide to the application process for a U.S. passport if you’re applying for the first time.

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How To Become a U.S. Citizen

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 2, 2022

Every year, several people become U.S. citizens and enjoy the benefits that come with U.S. citizenship. There are four general ways to become a U.S. citizen: by birth, acquisition, derivation, or naturalization. This article explains each of the four ways of becoming a U.S. citizen and who qualifies to use each process.

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U.S. Citizenship Processing Times

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 2, 2022

On average, it takes 18 months to 24 months to complete the naturalization process and become a U.S. citizen. The naturalization process has five general steps. It begins with filing Form N-400 and ends with taking the Oath of Allegiance. This article explains how long each part of the process takes and what can cause delays, as well as how to avoid them. It also explains how to check your citizenship application status.

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What Are the Benefits of U.S. Citizenship by Naturalization?

Written by Jonathan Petts

Lawful permanent residents of the United States are eligible to become U.S. citizens. There are many benefits to naturalizing as a U.S. citizen. After naturalization, you become entitled to the rights that come with lifelong U.S. citizenship. For example, you’ll no longer have to renew your green card for continued immigration status. This article describes these and other benefits of naturalization, as well as your new responsibilities as a citizen of the United States of America.

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How long does it take for USCIS and the NVC to process applications, and how do I check the status of my case?

Written by Jonathan Petts

If you would like to track your immigration application as it moves along the immigration process or if you are wondering how to check if your application's processing is outside the expected processing timeframes, we've got you covered! This article will explore how to check your application case status - both with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the National Visa Center (NVC) - and what to do if your application processing falls outside the normal processing time.

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How To Apply for a US passport for Children Under 18

Written by Jonathan Petts

If you and your children recently became U.S. citizens, you may want to get your U.S. passports. The passport application process for children under age 18 is a little different from the process for adults, even though everyone must complete Form DS-11 for their U.S. passports. This article will explain the different requirements for children applying for U.S. passports.

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What Is the U.S. Citizenship Interview?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 9, 2022

After U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has reviewed your naturalization application and processed your biometric information, they will set an interview appointment for you. Your appointment notice will have your interview date and time. Citizenship interviews typically take place at a USCIS field office — usually, one that is close to the physical address you provided on the Form N-400 form you submitted. This article explains the purpose of the citizenship interview, what to take with you, and what happens during and after the interview.

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What Is the Form I-94 Travel Record?

Written by Jonathan Petts

Nearly every foreign traveler to the United States has an I-94 travel record (also known as “Form I-94” or “I-94 Form”). U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials issue Form I-94 to foreign travelers entering the United States. CBP officials use Form I-94 to track arrivals and departures of non-citizens visiting the United States. This article explains Form i-94 in-depth, including how it is used, how to access yours, and answers to some frequently asked questions.‍

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Is U.S. Dual Citizenship Possible?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 10, 2022

While the United States does allow for dual citizenship, your country of origin may not. It's important to check with your home country prior to applying for citizenship by naturalization in the U.S. The process of applying for dual citizenship is the same as the process of applying to become a U.S. citizen. Being a dual citizen comes with both advantages and drawbacks, which we explore further in this article.

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How To Check the Status of Your U.S. Citizenship Application

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 19, 2022

After submitting Form N-400 to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS), an agency of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), your next step will be waiting for updates on your citizenship application. You may check your U.S. citizenship application status in four ways — online, by phone, by mail, or in person. This article explains how to do each.

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U.S. Citizenship Test Questions and Answers (2008 Version)

Written by Jonathan Petts

People who wish to naturalize as U.S. citizens have to pass a U.S. citizenship test. In addition to English language questions, the test includes civics questions about American government, history, geography, symbols, and holidays. This article contains all 100 of the civics questions from the current citizenship test and their answers, as taken from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) website. The USCIS officer quizzing you will ask you 10 of these 100 questions. You’ll pass the naturalization test if you answer at least six out of those 10 questions correctly. We hope you find this study guide helpful!

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What Is Form N-648: Medical Certification for Disability Exceptions?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated July 11, 2022

If you aren’t able to take the citizenship test required at your naturalization interview because of a medically diagnosed impairment or disability, you can let U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) know ahead of your interview with Form N-648. This article explains what Form N-648 is, how USCIS uses it, and who’s eligible for the waiver. It also covers how to fill out the form and what happens if USCIS denies your application.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Was Denied” Mean for My Citizenship Application?

Written by Jonathan Petts

If you see “Case Was Denied” as your USCIS case status online, it means that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has received and reviewed your Form N-400 citizenship case and decided not to grant you naturalization. If USCIS denies your citizenship case, it will send you a denial notice explaining why. It can be disheartening to go through months of waiting for USCIS to process your citizenship application only to have your case denied. If this happens, you may want to get legal advice about the next steps. If you decide to appeal your case, we can refer you to a good immigration attorney for help.

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How To Notify USCIS (or the NVC) About a Change of Address

Written by Jonathan Petts

According to U.S. immigration law, most non-citizens living in the United States must inform U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) when they change addresses. This does not mean that you must ask the U.S. government for permission to move houses. You just have to make sure you inform them after you move. Beyond complying with the law, this is important because USCIS will have updated address information for you when they have to mail you an important notice. This article explains how to go about notifying USCIS about a change of address and which foreigners have to do this under the law.

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How Long Do Immigration Applications Take and What Should I Do if Mine Is Taking Too Long?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated November 14, 2022

Many factors affect the time it takes U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to process immigration applications, including the type of benefit you’re applying for and which USCIS service center or field office is processing your forms. This article covers the factors that affect immigration application processing, how to check your case status throughout processing, and what to do if your application is taking longer than the average processing time.

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How To Find Help With Your Immigration Application When You Need Some Extra Help

Written by Jonathan Petts

ImmigrationHelp.org is a nonprofit that helps low-income Dreamers prepare their Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Advance Parole application paperwork for free. With DACA, you can access immigration benefits like work authorization and protection from deportation. ImmigrationHelp.org is not a law firm, so we cannot provide legal representation for our users. As a nonprofit, our goal is to empower you to file your DACA and Advance Parole paperwork on your own. In this article, we explain other resources you can turn to when you need a bit more help than we can provide.

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What Does the USCIS Case Status “Case Rejected” Mean for My Citizenship Application?

Written by Upsolve Team

The USCIS case status “Case Rejected” means that you didn’t file your immigration paperwork correctly, so USCIS did not review your case. If USCIS rejects your case, it will return your original filing fee. To have your case reviewed, you’ll need to fix the issue that caused the rejection. Common issues that lead to rejection include filing the incorrect form version, paying an incorrect fee amount, and not signing a form. If you see the “Case Rejected” status on your USCIS account, you’ll need to refile your application and pay your filing fee to move forward with your immigration application. If you aren’t sure how to correct the mistake after reading this article, you may want to contact an attorney for help with your case. We can refer you to an experienced immigration attorney for a free consultation.

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How Much Does It Cost To Become a U.S. Citizen by Naturalization?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated September 21, 2022

There are many ways to become a U.S. Citizen, but citizenship by naturalization is the most common. The naturalization application costs $725. Two separate fees make up this larger fee: a $640 filing fee for the required Form N-400, and $85 for the biometrics appointment. These fees will be increasing significantly soon. Some people do not have to pay these fees with their naturalization application, but most do. If you are a green card holder who wants to apply for citizenship by naturalization, you can either pay these fees online or by mail, depending on how you file your application.

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Form N-600: How To Get a Certificate of Citizenship

Written by Jonathan Petts

There are many benefits to becoming a U.S. citizen. You can work in federal jobs, vote in state and national elections, and live outside the United States for a prolonged time. You can become a U.S. citizen by birth in the United States, by birth to U.S. citizen parents, or by naturalization. In this article, you'll learn if you can apply for a certificate of citizenship with a Form N-600, what documents you'll need to apply, how much it costs, and how long it takes to get it.

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How Long Does It Take To Get U.S. Citizenship After You Apply?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated September 21, 2022

So you've applied to trade your green card for a certificate of citizenship - CONGRATULATIONS! We're thrilled that you've taken this exciting step toward finding freedom and opportunity in the U.S. But what's next? If you're like most immigrants, you're probably anxious to know what happens after filing your Form N-400. How long do most applications take? How long is too long to wait for a reply from USCIS? What does the notice you received from USCIS mean? We'll answer all of these questions, and more, in this article. The average processing time for citizenship (naturalization) applications is eight months as of May 31, 2020. However, that's just how long it takes USCIS to process Form N-400. The entire naturalization process has several steps and takes an average of 15 months. This article explains all of the stages of the citizenship by naturalization application process and includes a detailed breakdown of how long each stage should take.

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Can DACA Recipients Become U.S. Citizens?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated October 2, 2022

In 2012 President Obama passed an Executive Order that launched the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program for millions of undocumented youth in the United States called Dreamers. DACA provides protection from deportation for eligible Dreamers, but it doesn't provide a pathway to long-term lawful permanent residence in the United States. Over the years, lawmakers have proposed many different laws to grant Dreamers a clear path to permanent residence and eventual citizenship, but none have passed yet. Still, it may be possible for some DACA recipients to get green cards and then naturalize as American citizens. This article explains the barriers to citizenship for DACA recipients and discusses the conditions under which some DACA recipients could get green cards and later naturalize.

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What Is the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) and How Does Does It Impact Immigration?

Written by Jonathan Petts
Updated August 7, 2022

You may have special access to U.S. immigration pathways under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). Under VAWA, the U.S. government commits to protecting victims of domestic and sexual violence. As the battered noncitizen spouse or child of an abusive U.S. citizen or permanent resident, you may be eligible to apply for a green card. In this article, you’ll learn more about the history of VAWA, how to qualify for a green card under VAWA, and how you can submit your application.

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