Naturalization is the process by which U.S. citizenship is granted to a foreign citizen or national after he or she fulfills the requirements established by Congress in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). In most cases, an applicant for naturalization must be a permanent resident (green card holder) before filing. Except for certain U.S. military members and their dependents, naturalization can only be granted in the United States.
You May Qualify for Naturalization if:
- You have been a permanent resident for at least 5 years and meet all other eligibility requirements. See the “General Path to Citizenship” link under “Citizenship Through Naturalization” to the left.
- You have been a permanent resident for 3 years or more and meet all eligibility requirements to file as a spouse of a U.S. citizen. See the “For Spouses of U.S. Citizens” link under “Citizenship Through Naturalization” to the left.
- You have qualifying service in the U.S. armed forces and meet all other eligibility requirements.
- Your child may qualify for naturalization if you are a U.S. citizen, the child was born outside the U.S., the child is currently residing outside the U.S., and all other eligibility requirements are met.