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This article and this website is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. This information provided should not be used as a substitute for obtaining legal advice from an attorney licensed or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. You should always consult a suitably qualified attorney regarding any specific legal problem or matter and not rely on the content of this article. Nothing on this site is intended to create an attorney-client relationship and nothing posted constitutes legal advice. We cannot guarantee that the information is accurate, complete or up-to-date.

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Naturalization and Citizenship

Naturalization is the process by which United States citizenship is conferred upon a foreign citizen or national after he or she fulfills the requirements established by Congress in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). The general requirements for administrative naturalization include:

  • a period of continuous residence and physical presence in the United States;
  • residence in a particular United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) District prior to filing;
  • an ability to read, write and speak English;
  • knowledge and understanding of United States history and government;
  • good moral character;
  • attachment to the principles of the United States Constitution; and
  • favorable disposition toward the United States

Note: Recent changes in immigration law and United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) procedures now make it easier for United States military personnel to naturalize.

All applicants for naturalization must demonstrate good moral character, attachment, and favorable disposition. The other naturalization requirements may be modified or waived for certain applicants, such as spouses of United States citizens.

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