Step-by-Step Guide: Applying for US Citizenship through Naturalization in 2023

By: Dan Cooper

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Step-by-Step Guide: Applying for US Citizenship through Naturalization in 2023

If you are interested in becoming a natural person and legal member of the United States, you must consider the application process and associated fees.

What is United States Nationality?

The status of a natural person as a legal member of the United States is referred to as United States nationality.

If you were not born in the US, you are still eligible to become a national through specific requirements to obtain citizenship.

How to Get US Citizenship

People born in the United States are considered US citizens. However, people born in other countries can obtain US citizenship in two ways:

  • By birth through parent(s)
  • By naturalization

Requirements to Apply for US Citizenship

In order to obtain US Citizenship, certain eligibility requirements must be met:

  • You must be at least 18 years old
  • Be a permanent resident (have a green card or “Green Card”)
  • Note: you may be asked to meet other requirements that may vary depending on your age, marital status, and military service.

How to Apply for US Citizenship

The first step is to fill out the Online Form N-400, Application for Naturalization. On the page, you can see tutorials on how to fill out the application and the times you must wait to apply. You can send the document to USCIS online or by mail. Learn about the two ways to file:

  • Online
  • Pay the filing fee online
  • Check the status of your case
  • Receive case notifications and updates
  • View personalized estimates of case completion dates
  • Respond to evidence requests
  • Manage your contact information, including updating your address.
  • By mail
  • If you file Form N-400 in paper format, USCIS will send a USCIS Account Acceptance Notice that will contain instructions on how to create an online account to verify and manage your case.
  • It will process your application even if you do not create an online account, but encourages you to create and access your online account.
  • USCIS will continue to send you notices about your case by mail.
  • Don’t forget to sign your form. They reject any form that is not signed.

What is the Cost of the Citizenship Application?

The filing fee is US$640, but you must add US$85 biometric services fee for a total of US$725.

If you file your Form N-400 by mail (paper), you can pay the fee with a money order, personal check, cashier’s check, or credit card along with Form G-1450, Authorization for Credit Card Transactions. If you pay by check, you must make it payable to the US Department of Homeland Security.

How Long Does the Process to Obtain US Citizenship Take?

The length of the process to obtain citizenship varies depending on your situation. The agency responsible for coordinating and supervising this process is the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

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