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In the United States, the road to citizenship can be long and arduous. For most people, this process can take years of effort. Despite the associated challenges, many individuals undertake these steps each year to attain the benefits of citizenship.

If you hope to become a United States citizen, it is vital that you pursue this goal with care. A single mistake could derail the entire process and undo all of your hard work. Speak with a dedicated immigration attorney to learn more about the steps toward becoming a U.S. citizen in Bolingbrook and increase your chances of obtaining this status.

Determine Eligibility

Not every foreign citizen will qualify for U.S. citizenship, and there are many factors that could render a person permanently ineligible from obtaining citizenship in the United States. Before working towards the goal of citizenship, it a potential applicant should determine his or her eligibility by consulting with a Bolingbrook attorney.

The amount of time a person must wait to seek citizenship will depend on multiple conditions. For example, a person with a valid green card can apply for citizenship after five years, and a spouse of an American citizen can apply for citizenship after three years of marriage.

File the Initial Forms

Once an applicant determines his or her eligibility, the first step toward citizenship involves filing a document known as form N-400. An applicant must also submit an application fee along with this form.

The N-400 form includes several pages of background questions. Upon completing the form, an applicant must also submit a copy of his or her green card and any other required supporting documentation.

Biometrics Appointment and Interviews

Submitting the N-400 form is not the end of the process. After submitting the form, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will schedule an appointment to take down biometric information. This information, including fingerprints, is used during the background check process.

After the biometrics appointment, an applicant must sit down for a citizenship interview with USCIS. The date of this interview is at the discretion of USCIS, and they will notify the applicant of the date, time, and location. During the interview, the applicant will typically answer questions regarding the answers provided in the N-400. The USCIS will also ask any follow-up questions involving the applicant’s supporting documentation, if necessary.

The interview will also involve a number of tests. These tests cover the applicant’s ability to speak English and knowledge of civics. Following the interview, the USCIS will eventually inform an applicant if the application was accepted or denied.

Take the Oath

For individuals who are granted citizenship, the final step involves taking the Oath of Allegiance to the United States. This oath occurs at a ceremony. At the conclusion of the ceremony, the individual is granted citizenship through a Certificate of Naturalization. From this moment forward, the successful applicant is a United States citizen.

Talk to a Bolingbrook Attorney About the Steps to Become a U.S. Citizen

Becoming a naturalized citizen of the United States is not a simple task, and you should not leave your pursuit of citizenship to chance. You could put yourself in the best position possible to become a United States citizen by working closely with a skilled Bolingbrook attorney who could work diligently to help you progress through all of the necessary steps. To initiate the process, call today to set up a consultation.

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