Green card holders, or permanent residents, who have been living in the country under that status for a period of at least three years and have been in marital union with the same U.S. citizen spouse during such time in this country, can apply for naturalization under Section 319(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) provided they meet certain eligibility requirements. (In certain cases, spouses of U.S. citizens employed abroad may qualify for naturalization regardless of their time as permanent residents under Section 319(b) of the INA.)
But to qualify under Section 319(a) the applicant for citizenship must:
- Be over 18 years of age
- Have lived within the state, or USCIS district with jurisdiction over the applicant’s place of residence, for at least 3 months prior to the date of filing the application
- Reside continuously within the United States from the date of application for naturalization until the time of naturalization
- Be physically present in the United States for at least 18 months out of the 3 years immediately preceding the date of filing the application
- Be able to read, write, and speak English and have knowledge and an understanding of U.S. history and government (also known as 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
In order to apply for naturalization, an applicant must file a Form N-400 form. Potential applicants can review a manual, M-476, A Guide to Naturalization for more information on the process. But to get the answers for all questions concerning this part of the naturalization process it is best to consult with a knowledgeable and experienced immigration attorney in your area.
The Shulman Law Group, LLC has successfully prepared and filed many petitions on behalf of its clients who are family members, including spouses, of U.S. citizens. Its comprehensive experience in the field enables the firm’s attorneys and professional staff to understand what information and materials needs to be produced in order to ensure petitions receive appropriate consideration. The firm’s excellence is fortified by its rigorous determination to ensure that all procedural matters are properly addressed.