In 2019, more than 21,000 people in Pennsylvania became naturalized citizens of the United States. They were born in countries all over the world but shared one unified desire — to become American citizens.
The path to U.S. citizenship can be challenging. Those who seek it often undergo a rigorous process but, if successful, reap the benefits of being able to call this great country their home.
Attorney Ejaz A. Sabir of the Sabir Law Group understands this desire. As an immigrant himself, Attorney Sabir knows the path can be complicated, frustrating, and frightening without a legal advocate on your side. That is why he has helped dozens of legal residents from Upper Darby and throughout greater Philadelphia navigate the naturalization process — and he would be proud to help you too.
As a legal U.S. resident, you enjoy many of the rights this country has to offer; however, there are additional benefits for naturalized U.S. citizens, including your ability to:
Obtain and travel with a U.S. passport
Vote in federal elections and run for citizenship-required elected office
Serve on a jury
Be eligible for certain law enforcement jobs
Qualify for certain state and federal benefits such as Medicaid and food assistance
Obtain citizenship for your minor children born abroad
Create an easier path toward bringing family members to the U.S.
To be eligible to become a U.S. citizen through the naturalization process, you must:
Be at least 18 years old when you file the application.
Have been a lawful permanent resident (have a “Green Card”) for the past three or five years.
Demonstrate continuous residence in the U.S. for at least five years or three years if married to a U.S. citizen.
Demonstrate that you have been physically present in the U.S. for at least the past 30 months, or 18 months if married to a U.S. citizen.
Provide evidence that you have lived in the state where you claim residence for at least three months.
Be able to read, write, and speak basic English.
Demonstrate good moral character.
Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of U.S. history and government.
Demonstrate loyalty to the principles of the U.S. Constitution.
Be willing to take the Oath of Allegiance to the U.S.
The process involves submission to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) an application for citizenship and supporting documentation and an interview with a USCIS representative.
You will file Form N-400, the Application for Citizenship, either by mail or online. The application must be accompanied by:
A photocopy of your Permanent Resident Card
Payment for the application fee ($640) and biometric services fee ($85)
Two identical photographs of you if you live outside the U.S. when submitting your application
You will also need to submit other documentation, depending on your circumstances. This may include:
Your attorney or accredited representative’s Entry of Appearance
Documentation of any name change from what appears on your Permanent Resident Card (such as a marriage certificate or divorce decree)
Evidence of marriage if you are applying for naturalization based on marriage to a U.S. citizen
Evidence of U.S. military service if used as the basis for your application
Evidence of continuous U.S. residency
Evidence of a dependent spouse or children who do not live with you
Documentation of any criminal arrests, charges, convictions, punishments, and expungements
Income tax returns
Evidence if you are applying for a disability exception to the naturalization testing requirement
Documentation of Selective Service registration or why you did not register when required
After you submit all necessary documentation, you will be required to attend an interview for citizenship with a USCIS officer. Following the interview, you will be notified of the decision regarding your request for citizenship.
If your application for citizenship is denied, you or your attorney may request a USCIS hearing. The hearing should be scheduled within 180 days of the request and be conducted by an officer other than the one who denied your application.
If the hearing results in another denial, the applicant’s attorney may request a hearing in the appropriate U.S. District Court.
The path to becoming a naturalized U.S. citizen is full of various applications, documentation, and evidence of your commitment to becoming a citizen. The process can be somewhat overwhelming, especially if you have trouble speaking English or if you have a criminal record. Having an experienced Pennsylvania naturalization attorney by your side to guide you through the process can make the path much smoother.
Using his own immigration experience and his knowledge of immigration law, attorney Sabir can help. He has represented applicants from 70 different countries and speaks six languages. He has a passion for helping others achieve U.S. citizenship just as he did. So if you or someone you know is looking for reliable legal assistance during the naturalization process, call the Sabir Law Group today to schedule a consultation!
Navigating the process of naturalization on your own can be stressful and confusing. Luckily, you do not have to make this journey alone. If you live in Upper Darby or anywhere else in the greater Philadelphia area, call Sabir Law Group today to learn more about what it takes to become a U.S. citizen. Attorney Sabir will do all that he can to answer all of your questions and guide you through the process from start to finish. If you or someone you know is pursuing U.S. citizenship through the naturalization process, call Sabir Law Group today for help.