The United States has regulated immigration since the beginning of the Twentieth Century. While entry rules have changed significantly over the years, it has not done anything to stop the slew of immigrants who want to become permanent citizens.
The guaranteed way to obtain automatic citizenship in the U.S. is through birth on American soil. However, it is not the only path to becoming a permanent or naturalized citizen. Discover some of the methods the government allows non-residents to gain citizenship.
Does every immigrant need a green card?
A green card is a common way for immigrants to reach their citizenship goals. It acts as a permit allowing a non-U.S. resident to reside and work in the country. It is a legal designation and affords protection against expulsion for those who have it. Another way for people to enter the U.S. is with a visa. The government issues this for a specified time and a purpose, such as work or school.
Who can apply for citizenship?
Getting a green card is the usual first step to becoming a naturalized or permanent citizen. After five years of living in the U.S. and following the law, a person with a green card can apply for naturalization. Other qualifications for seeking citizenship may also apply. Spouses and children of citizens may get through the process quicker, as might green card holders who have served in the military.
The application process for citizenship may prove daunting, and even if the government issues a green card, it does not guarantee permanent citizenship. Seeking the assistance of a person well-versed in the process can help.