Hinsdale Citizenship Attorney

Hinsdale Citizenship Attorney

Becoming a U.S. citizen is a dream for many immigrants. Fortunately, the U.S. immigration law allows noncitizens to apply and become citizens through the naturalization process. The naturalization process requires one to complete and file a detailed application form with supporting evidence of their eligibility. Although many of these applications are usually approved, many are also routinely rejected or denied. 

At Minsky, McCormick & Hallagan, we have experienced citizenship attorneys who help clients in the Hinsdale area to successfully apply for and obtain US citizenship.

Becoming a Naturalized U.S. Citizen

To be successful in obtaining U.S. citizenship through the naturalization process, the applicant must satisfy many requirements. The person applying for citizenship must:

  • Be at least 18 years of age at the time they submit their application.
  • Have had status as a lawful permanent resident (green card holder) for the last three or five years before applying, depending on how they obtained their green card status. For example, if the person applying for citizenship obtained their green card through marriage, then the person can apply for citizenship after three years of holding that green card status.
  • Have lived continuously and been physically present in the U.S.
  • Be able to speak, read, and write basic English.
  • Be a person of good moral character.
  • Have a basic understanding of the U.S. government and history.
  • Show loyalty to the principles underlying the U.S. Constitution and
  • Be willing and ready to take the Oath of Allegiance.

Crime and Citizenship

Anyone who has been convicted of either of the following crimes is ineligible and permanently barred from being granted citizenship:

  • Murder, or
  • An aggravated felony after November 29, 1990.

Having a criminal record in either category is automatic disqualification, meaning the immigration officer reviewing the application or who interviews the applicant has no discretion or option other than to deny the application. The evidence for convictions of this kind is usually found during routine background checks, which are done in connection with the application.

The information can also be discovered during the interview when an applicant is asked and they disclose such conviction as they should.

If you have a criminal record, it is important that you consult an experienced immigration attorney to advise you on the best strategy in your case to successfully obtain citizenship. 

The strategy may involve going back to the criminal court and having your record modified or expunged, or seeking a new trial if there is a legal basis to do so. In some cases, the only option is making a strong case to persuade USCIS that your conviction does not fit either of these two categories, which results in the automatic denial of an application for citizenship.

It is also important to keep in mind that even if your conviction is not murder or aggravated felony, you may still have your application denied on grounds you are not a person of good moral character based on what is in your record.

Discuss Your Situation With a Hinsdale Citizenship Attorney

If you are in the Hinsdale area and are thinking about applying for citizenship or you have applied already, contact our office to schedule a consultation to learn how we can help you.


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