It is the dream of millions of people around the world to raise their hand and take an oath of U.S. citizenship. Some people risk life and limb for this chance and to give it to their children. There are now many ways to enter the country compared to the last century, and there are a few more ways to stay in it.
The most common path to citizenship for people who are not born with it is naturalization for people who have lived as permanent residents in the United States. People married to permanent residents and the families of military service members with permanent residency may also apply, as well as children of permanent residents and citizens.
When it comes to the five-year requirement, presence in the United States for half of the 60 months during that time is required as well as residency or employment. The famous citizenship tests, which examines someone’s ability to speak English and understand the American system of government, is administered after this time.
There are a few other requirements that are less easy to understand including good moral character, which generally means a lack of criminal history but can be argued in several ways. A good disposition towards the order of the United States, which has political implications, may also be a requirement investigated by a court.
An attorney can help people seeking naturalization sort out all of these requirements and the documentation that may be necessary to prove a person meets them. No one should go through this process without the right help.