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If you are a lawful permanent resident of the United States, you may be considering applying to become a U.S. citizen. Obtaining U.S. citizenship offers naturalized citizens a wide array of benefits that supersede those awarded to the lawful permanent resident. These include gaining the right to vote, being eligible to run for public office, serve on a jury and apply for government jobs. Naturalized citizens may also be eligible to receive social security and Medicare benefits. If you are looking to move forward on the path to citizenship, an Atlanta immigration lawyer can walk you through the process step by step and clarify for you any roadblocks that you may encounter along the way. Schedule a consultation today to find out more.

Requirements for United States Citizenship

According to the U.S. Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), the requirements for permitting foreign applicants to become naturalized citizens include:

  • Satisfying the minimum age requirement of 18 years
  • Maintaining a continuous physical presence as a permanent resident of the United States for a minimum duration of five years and 30 months before attempting to file for naturalization
  • Demonstrating good moral character
  • Demonstrating working knowledge and an understanding of the history and forms of government of the United States
  • Demonstrating “attachment” to the U.S. Constitution. This means applicants must show they believe, support and would defend the principles of the Constitution, accept the democratic process and vow to obey the laws of this country
  • Demonstrating that they can read, write, speak and understand the ordinary usage of words in the English language
    Taking an oath of allegiance

Exceptions to the Above Rules

There can be certain deviations to the above requirements depending upon the particular situation at hand. For example, if the applicant is married and has been living with a spouse who is a U.S. citizen, the required minimum length of time to be living as a permanent resident in the United States can be reduced. The requirement to speak, read and write in English may be waived if the applicant is at least 55 years old and has been living in the United States as a permanent resident for the past 15 years. The requirement may also be waived for applicants who have held a Green Card for a minimum of 20 years and are at least 50 years old. Exceptions to the above rules are also applicable when the applicant has a permanent physical or mental handicap that renders them unable to perform certain tasks.

We Are 100% Committed to Non-U.S. Citizens. Check Out Our Immigration Practice Areas

STERN Law provides immigration assistance and deportation defense services to both detained and non-detained immigrants. We serve:

  • Qualifying relatives of U.S citizens or Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs) seeking immigration status through a family-based application
  • Permanent residents (LPRs) who wish to earn U.S. Citizenship via the Naturalization Process
  • Non – U.S. Citizens facing Deportation/Removal
  • Non – U.S. Citizens who are the victim of violent crime or domestic violence in the U.S. and who participate in prosecution of the crime and/or divorce their abusive spouse
  • Non – U.S. Citizens applying for Temporary Protected Status
  • Seekers of Humanitarian Parole into the U.S.

We DO NOT take “NO” for an answer, even in the most complex of cases. See below different areas of Immigration Law we have handled with high success.
When we fight, we win!

Atlanta immigration lawyers and trained staff provide consultations and legal representation on the following matters:

  • Removal/deportation defense: Legal representation for immigrants who are in deportation proceedings.
  • Family-based immigration: Legal assistance for permanent residents and U.S. citizens who want to apply to bring family members to the United States or to allow family members in the United States to adjust their status.
  • Applications for Lawful Permanent Residence: Assistance in completing and filing applications for lawful permanent residence (also known as a green card.
  • Naturalization/Citizenship: Legal assistance for permanent residents who want to apply to become U.S. citizens.
  • Temporary Protected Status (TPS): Legal assistance for immigrants who qualify for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) visas based on their country of origin and dates of immigration.
  • Legal protections for immigrant victims of family violence (VAWA): Legal assistance for men and women who qualify for immigration benefits under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) because they have been abused by a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.
  • Visas for immigrant victims of crimes (U Visas and S Visas): Assistance in obtaining a visa for immigrants who have been a victim of a crime and are willing to assist law enforcement in the investigation of that crime.

Next Steps to the Application Process

Once the applicant has satisfied all the requirements and has filed the Application for Certificate of Citizenship to become a naturalized citizen, the next step is to wait for U.S. Citizenship and Naturalization Services (CIS) to render a final decision on the application. Thereafter, CIS has approximately 180 days from the date the application was filed to do so. Should applicants receive a denial response to their application, they are entitled to an administrative review process and a hearing with an immigration officer. It is beneficial for applicants to contact a qualified Atlanta immigration lawyer who can assist with any complications to the naturalization process.

Contacting an Atlanta Immigration Attorney

Applying to become a naturalized citizen can be an exciting time, but it is best to take all necessary precautions to bolster the chances that your application will be accepted. Whether you are in the stages of applying for naturalization or are facing a rejection of your application, an immigration attorney may be able to assist you.

Contact an Atlanta immigration lawyer today for a consultation to discuss your matter in detail.

You deserve to be represented by the first 100% CrImmigration Law Firm in the country

As the first and only law firm that remains 100% committed to the defense of non-U.S. citizens through criminal and immigration law exclusively, we know you best. We know what success looks like for you… You will work with a team committed to the education of their community, their colleagues and themselves.

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Take a stand for your future,RIGHT NOW.

If you’re ready to relentlessly FIGHT for your freedom, and WON’T take “no” for an answer, connect with STERN Law today!

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