Becoming a US citizen can give birth to many opportunities to a person who becomes a resident of the country. One, the citizen can vote and has access to a passport. What’s more, there is protection from the citizen getting deported to some other country.
But the process of citizenship requires some steps to be followed:
STEP 1: ELIGIBILITY: Are you eligible to apply for citizenship? Do you have lawful permanent residence, that is, a green card? Unless you have been sanctioned special waivers (which is very rare) you must have a green card first, before you can apply to be a citizen.
STEP 2: OVERCOMING INELIGIBILITY: Perhaps you are not eligible to become a citizen right now. Maybe a minor crime was committed by you, or for some other reason you are prevented from becoming a citizen. So you need to find the steps to overcome this obstacle to citizenship. An immigration lawyer who specializes in immigration and citizenship could be consulted.
STEP 3: FORM N-400 TO BE FILED: Some paperwork will have to be done once eligibility is established. The N-400 is the form which gets the process initiated. Along with the application a copy of your green card too should be attached.
STEP 4: FINGERPRINTING: Once your application is filed a background check will be done. A date will be given to you; you will then have to visit the local office where your fingerprinting will be done. FBI will carry out a background check on the fingerprint.
There are 2 more steps to complete the entire process, which we will look at in our next blog.