Naturalization and Citizenship

Mr. Levine helps his clients get U.S. citizenship. 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.

A person may derive U.S. citizenship through his or her parent(s). Whether someone born outside the United States to a U.S. citizen parent or parents is a U.S. citizen depends on the law in effect when the person was born. These laws have changed over the years, but usually require a combination of at least one parent being a U.S. citizen when the child was born and having lived in the U.S. or its possessions for a period of time. Additionally, children born outside the United States may become citizens after birth based on their parent’s citizenship or naturalization.

A person may qualify for naturalization if he or she:

  • Has been a permanent resident for at least 5 years and meets all other eligibility requirements, or
  • Has been a permanent resident for 3 years or more and meets all eligibility requirements to file as a spouse of a U.S. citizen, or
  • Has qualifying service in the U.S. Armed Forces and meets all other eligibility requirements, or
  • Is the child of a U.S. citizen, was born outside the U.S., is currently residing outside the U.S., and all other eligibility requirements are met.