Naturalization is a legal procedure which allows Green Card holders or Permanent Residents of the United States can become citizens of the United States.
The process of taking citizenship consists in four stages:
- Submission of application. Applicants file Form N-400 with the Citizenship and Immigration Service. There should be attached photos, a copy of the Green Card and check of payment fee for processing the application. Persons under 75 must also pay a fee for fingerprints.
- Checking for the criminal past. To perform checking of criminal history, applicants are required to fingerprints on one of the Application Support Centers (USCIS).
- Interviewing. The Immigration Service appoints an interview for naturalization. During the interview, the employee of the Citizenship and Immigration Service will explain the purpose of the interview, check the identity card and under oath will ask the list of questions about your biography, residence and length of stay in the country, your moral qualities, commitment to the Constitution and readiness to accept the oath of allegiance to the United States. The employee will give you the test of knowledge of American history and the basics of citizenship, as well as a short test of English language skills.
- Oath of allegiance to the United States. When the Citizenship and Immigration Service approves your application for naturalization, you must go to the ceremony of taking the oath of allegiance to the United States.