Citizenship Attorney Elgin
Becoming a citizen of the United States is something many foreign nationals living in the country dream of happening someday. The road to citizenship for any foreign national is long and can involve obstacles that make the journey even longer. However, with the help of an experienced citizenship attorney in Elgin, that journey can be made smoother for those who seek to become citizens.
Eligibility for Citizenship
Citizenship is attained through a legal process known as “naturalization,” through which one applies and is approved to become a U.S. citizen. To apply for naturalization, you must:
- Be at least 18 years of age when you file the application,
- You must have been a green card holder for the past three or five years, depending under which naturalization category you apply.
- Have continuously lived and have been physically present in the United States for a specific time,
- Read, write, and speak basic English,
- Have an understanding of basic U.S. history and government,
- Show that you are a person of good moral character,
- Show loyalty to the principles of the U.S. Constitution; and
- Be willing to take the Oath of Allegiance.
The best way to know if you qualify is to have our attorneys review your circumstances.
Benefits of Naturalization
Becoming a citizen has many advantages and benefits than just remaining a green card holder, and these include the following:
- No need to renew your green card. A green card holder is required under U.S. immigration law to renew their green cards every 10 years. If you naturalize and become a U.S. citizen, then you will no longer need to renew your green card, as it will be replaced with your U.S. passport.
- No Fear of Deportation. There is a misconception about “permanent residency” that being a green card holder means you have the right to permanently remain in the United States no matter what. There are situations when a green card holder can have their green card revoked or find themselves deportable on various grounds, especially if they are accused of certain crimes. So, having a green card is no assurance you will always be eligible to live permanently in the U.S., as you can lose that status. However, you cannot lose your status as a U.S. citizen, so you cannot be deported unless it is proven that you obtained your green card fraudulently.
- Easier Exit and Reentry to the United States. For anyone who travels, you know that having a U.S. passport makes it a lot easier in many situations, compared to having a green card or a passport from another country.
- The Ability to Petition for Relatives. As a U.S. citizen, you can petition for more classes of family members to be given green cards than you can as a green card holder. The process for obtaining green cards for your relatives is also much easier and faster when you have citizenship.
Consult with a Citizenship Attorney in Elgin Today
If you are in the Elgin area and are ready to start your naturalization process, contact our office today and request a consultation. Our team at Minsky McCormick & Hallagan, P.C., is ready to help.