US Citizenship Attorney Houston

There are various ways to acquire citizenship in the United States of America. The main methods are citizenship through parents (blood right) and by birth (birthright). In addition, US citizenship can be obtained in the order of ordinary naturalization, which is one of the conditions and implies a certain number of years of actual residence in the country.

US citizenship by birthright

Being born in the United States gives you the right to citizenship even if your parents have temporary or tourist status. This practice is different from all European countries, where citizenship legislation is based primarily on the right to blood.

US citizenship through parents

A child born abroad will be a US citizen if:

  • Both of his parents are US citizens at the time of the child’s birth
  • At least one of the parents was a resident of the United States. This refers to any time before the birth of the child
  • A birth certificate abroad, if registered with the American consulate or embassy, ​​is proof (proof) of US citizenship. Also, such a citizen may apply for a passport or certificate of citizenship.

    Naturalization Attorney Houston

    US citizenship through naturalization

    A person who is not born as an American citizen can acquire the citizenship of the United States through naturalization. In order to become a US citizen by naturalization, you must be at least 18 years old at the time of the application, as well as be permanent resident of the United States (have permanent residence in the US for five years, not counting 90 days before the application is submitted). The standard period of naturalization in the United States implies living in the country for five years in permanent resident status. Following the immigration process, first, a person receives a temporary residence permit in the United States for two years, then permanent residence, finally, after five years in the United States, you can get American citizenship. In some cases, the residency requirement can be reduced. If you are married to a citizen of the United States, then instead of the standard five years for citizenship, you only need to live in the country with permanent resident status for three years. At the same time, the obligatory condition is that the person with whom you are married is not a new citizen, but has held US citizenship for at least three years.

    Applicants for US citizenship must be physically present in the United States 30 months from the last 60 months before the application date. There is one more limitation: you need to be a permanent resident. Applicants for US citizenship, within 60 months prior to the application, should not have periods of absence outside the country exceeding 6 months for each departure. Otherwise, they have no right to naturalize, and must first comply with the specified conditions of residence in the United States. We must note that there are exceptions under which it is possible to leave the country for more than 6 months, or even up to 1 year. But these situations are so rare that it makes little sense to consider them.

    In addition to the above conditions related to physical presence in the United States, there are other mandatory conditions. You must not have a criminal record and you must submit a certificate of good conduct from the country of citizenship and previous residence. You also need to pass a test of knowledge of the history of the United States. Most US citizenship applicants are also required to have a working knowledge of English.

    To become a US citizen at birth, you must:

    • Have been born in the United States or certain territories or outlying possessions of the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction of the United States;
      OR
    • had a parent or parents who were citizens at the time of your birth (if you were born abroad) and meet other requirements

    To acquire a US citizenship status after birth, you must:

    • Apply for “derived” or “acquired” citizenship through parents
    • Apply for naturalization
    • Take the Naturalization Test
      Most naturalization applicants are required to take a test on:
    • English
    • Civics (U.S. history and government)

    Dual citizenship in the United States

    The United States recognizes the institution of dual citizenship and multiple citizenship, so citizenship of the United States can be granted without abandoning previous citizenship.

    To find out more about U.S. Citizenship and Naturalization in Houston, TX contact Citizenship and Naturalization Attorney Houston Claudine Gasana today.