Jacksonville Citizenship Attorneys
Helping Immigrants in Florida Navigate the U.S. Citizenship Process
Many people come to the United States with the ultimate goal of going through the naturalization process and becoming a citizen. Obtaining a green card and earning lawful permanent resident (LPR) status is often the first step in this journey, but there are several paths to citizenship depending on the specifics of your situation.
If you or someone you love wishes to become a U.S. citizen through naturalization, Maney | Gordon | Zeller, P.A. can help. With multiple offices located throughout the United States, we provide personalized guidance and support for immigrants, employers, and families. Our Jacksonville citizenship attorneys are ready to answer your questions and help you navigate the U.S. immigration process.
Who Can Become a U.S. Citizen?
Unfortunately, there are many hurdles to becoming a U.S. citizen—and many foreign nationals and immigrants will never have the opportunity. This is because U.S. citizenship is not available to everyone. In fact, to become a citizen, you must first meet numerous eligibility requirements.
To be eligible for U.S. citizenship, you must:
- Be at least 18 years of age or be adopted by a U.S. citizen
- Have a green card for at least five years (or three years if your spouse is a U.S. citizen)
- Speak basic English and be able to read and write in English
- Have “good moral character”
Additionally, you must pass a U.S. naturalization test to become a U.S. citizen. This test consists of two components—an English test and a civics test—and includes a variety of topics, such as basic United States history and government. Following the test, you will also need to attend an interview with a USCIS agent.
Do You Have to Get a Green Card to Become a U.S. Citizen?
In nearly all cases, obtaining a green card (lawful permanent residency) is required before citizenship. If you are married to a U.S. citizen, you must have a green card for at least three years before you can apply for naturalization; all others must have a green card for at least five years before they can become a citizen of the United States.
Additionally, if your green card has expired or is set to expire within six months of when you apply for naturalization, you will need to renew it before seeking citizenship. You are allowed to apply for naturalization before you actually receive your new green card, but you will be required to submit proof that you have requested a renewal via the Application to Replace Permanent Resident Card (Form I-90).
What Are the Benefits of Becoming a U.S. Citizen?
While you are able to live and work in the United States as a lawful permanent resident, there are many advantages to becoming a United States citizen.
Some of these advantages include the right to:
- Obtain and travel with a U.S. passport
- Sponsor non-citizen family members who wish to come to the U.S.
- Petition to obtain citizenship for your non-citizen children
- Vote in U.S. federal elections and win certain elected title
- Apply for and obtain federal employment
Although the U.S. naturalization process can be complex, lengthy, and challenging, the rewards of becoming a citizen are significant. One of the best ways to ensure a smooth citizenship process is to work with an experienced attorney who can help protect your rights and guide you through the complicated immigration system.
How We Can Help
At Maney | Gordon | Zeller, P.A., our Jacksonville citizenship attorneys are ready to help you take the first step in your journey to becoming a U.S. citizen. We can assist you in determining if you are eligible to apply for naturalization, as well as help you prepare for your naturalization test and USCIS interview and ensure that you do not make any mistakes on your application or miss any crucial deadlines.
We are happy to meet with you to discuss your questions and provide the dedicated legal counsel you need. Please do not hesitate to reach out to our firm to set up an appointment with one of our immigration lawyers. From our office in Jacksonville, we represent clients throughout Florida and the United States.
We Have Nine Offices Across the U.S. Dedicated to Your American Dream
We Are Licensed to Practice Law at the United States Supreme Court Level
We Are Licensed to Practice Law in Sixteen States & Four Countries
We Have Board-Certified* Immigration Specialists on Our Legal Team
We Have Served Hopeful Immigrants for Over 40 Consecutive Years
We Are Nationwide Authorities on the Law & Politics of Immigration
Our immigration lawyers are dedicated to excellence and are committed to going above and beyond for our clients to obtain the outcome that they deserve. Whether you are an employer or an individual, you will receive the legal assistance that you need in your pursuit of legal immigration into the U.S.