Applicants must meet certain eligibility requirements before applying for US citizenship. Being at least 18 years or older and a being a permanent resident (Green Card holder) now and during all of the past 5 years are few of the requirements. You should have resided in the United States for a continuous period before filing of the citizenship application. If you are not married to a U.S. citizen, you should have resided in the U.S. for a continuous period of five years after admission to the U.S. as a permanent resident. If you are married to a U.S. citizen, you should have resided in the U.S. for a continuous period of three years following your admission to the U.S. as a permanent resident.
A prolonged absence from the U.S. will break the continuity of your residence in the U.S. for naturalization purposes. Additionally, you should have met physical presence requirements too. It means that you have actually been in the United States. Prior to applying, you should have resided in your current state for at least 3 months.
If you are applying for US Citizenship, you should file Form N-400 , Application for Naturalization with the USCIS. Certain supporting documents should be send with your N-400 application. Documents that are in a foreign language should be accompanied by a full English language translation while submitting to the USCIS. In such cases, the translator should certify the translation as complete and accurate, and also by the translator's certification that he/she is competent to translate from the foreign language into English.
The filing fee for the citizenship application is $595.00. Additionally, a biometric fee of $85.00 is required when filing this Form N-400. You may submit one check or money order for $680 for both the application and biometric fees. If you are filing under the military provisions , you do not require a filing fee.
The processing time for the citizenship application and US Visas application can vary from five months to more than two years depending on where and when you choose to file your application. Then the swearing-in ceremony for receiving the certificate will take place from 1 to 180 days after the interview, although in a few USCIS district offices, it can take another one or two years. The length of time for the entire process depends on the number of Citizenship applications the USCIS offices receive in each state. Additionally, making a mistake on your application can cost you even more time. So always ensure that your application is complete and error- free.