Immigration Lawyer

How long is the American Citizenship Process?

Q: How long is the American Citizenship process?

A: Once you have been a US permanent resident green card holder for the requisite number of years, the American naturalization process, or American citizenship process, begins when the naturalization attorney files of the citizenship application (N-400) at the proper citizenship application lock box facility. See American citizenship application filing locations.

After the N-400 is received and processed by USCIS, the naturalization applicant or attorney will receive an appointment for biometrics and fingerprinting. There will be a delay in processing of the application while the applicant’s background is checked. The amount of time required for this background check depends on the individual’s background and/or criminal history. Your naturalization attorney will be able to identify any problematic items in your background, or issues with meeting the American citizenship requirements, so that they can be addressed by the naturalization attorney during your citizenship interview.

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Only after the applicant’s background check has been completed will the citizenship interview be scheduled at the local USCIS office. ¬†During the interview, the immigration officer will confirm that you meet all of the American citizenship requirements. If any issues arise during this part of the interview, your naturalization attorney will be prepared to advocate on your behalf. ¬†Once the immigration officer is satisfied that you meet the citizenship requirements, the English and civics test will be administered.

The total length of time for completion of the American citizenship process will vary depending on the circumstances of an individual case. However, USCIS states that most citizenship applications are being processed within 5 months of filing with the appropriate lock box.

5 Responses to “How long is the American Citizenship Process?”

  1. immigrant investor visa says:

    I am here on a EB5 visa and I am wondering if the process will be at all expedited for my case, considering the contributions I have made. Please, any insight at all you may have is greatly appreciated.

  2. admin says:

    Lawful permanent residents who received their green cards via the EB5 visa program are eligible to apply for US citizenship after 5 years. They do not qualify for an “expedited” citizenship waiting period like those who are married to US Citizens (three years).

  3. Lee says:

    I am eligible to apply both by virtue of being a lawful permanent resident for 5 years and by being married to a US citizen for 3 years. Which path is typically faster and is less onerous? Thanks in advance!

  4. Millie says:

    There are pros and cons to either approach. For the three year path, you only need show Good Moral Character for three years. If you obtained your green card via marriage to this same spouse, you need to be prepared (in the worst case scenario) to prove all over again that your marriage is valid. For the five year path, you would need to show Good Moral Character for five years, but would not need to send any initial evidence regarding your marriage. However, if the green card was obtained via your spouse, there is always the possibility that they will require you to prove validity of the marriage. Bottom line, an attorney will need to review your entire background to determine whether the 3yr v. 5yr good moral character requirement makes any difference to your case.

  5. Meyng Cho says:

    I’m a permanent resident for over 5 yrs and married with a child. What’s the quickest way to get my citizenship?

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