The United States issues more visas annually than any other country in the world.
But the pathway to citizenship can be difficult to follow given the many different requirements involving residency, employment, education, and more. KP Law can assist you at any point along your journey or all the way from your first application to your naturalization ceremony.
It’s helpful to know about . . .
Paths to Permanent Resident Status
Adjustment of Status
The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) permits the change of an individual’s immigration status while in the United States from nonimmigrant or parolee (temporary) to immigrant (permanent) if the individual was inspected and admitted or paroled into the United States and is able to meet all required qualifications for a green card (permanent residence) in a particular category. The common term for a change to permanent status is “adjustment of status.”
Adjustment of status is the process by which an eligible individual already in the United States can get permanent resident status (a green card) without having to return to their home country to complete visa processing.
Consular processing is an alternate process for an individual outside the United States (or who is in the United States but is ineligible to adjust status) to obtain a visa abroad and enter the United States as a permanent resident) This pathway is referred to as “consular processing.”
Naturalization is also categorized as:
Spouses of U.S. Citizens Employed Abroad
Generally, the spouse of a U.S. citizen who is employed by the U.S. government, including the military, or other qualifying employer, whose spouse is scheduled to be stationed abroad in such employment for at least 1 year at the time of filing, may be eligible for naturalization under Section 319(b) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).
Eligibility Requirements for Naturalization
If you are a green card holder of at least 5 years, you must meet the following requirements in order to apply for naturalization:
- Be 18 or older at the time of filing
- Be a green card holder for at least 5 years immediately preceding the date of filing the Form N-400, Application for Naturalization
- Have lived within the state, or United States Citizens and Immigration Services (USCIS) district with jurisdiction over the applicant’s place of residence, for at least 3 months prior to the date of filing the application
- Have continuous residence in the United States as a green card holder for at least 5 years immediately preceding the date of filing the application
- Be physically present in the United States for at least 30 months out of the 5 years immediately preceding the date of filing the application
- Reside continuously within the United States from the date of application for naturalization up to the time of naturalization
- Be able to read, write, and speak English and have knowledge and an understanding of U.S. history and government (civics).
- Be a person of good moral character, attached to the principles of the Constitution of the United States, and well disposed to the good order and happiness of the United States during all relevant periods under the law