Genesis Law Firm assists individuals in obtaining U.S. citizenship and/or naturalization. The process to obtain U.S. citizenship varies, and each person’s unique situation must be analyzed to determine the proper course of action. Genesis Law Firm has experience assisting individuals in this analysis and application process.
Generally, an individual may become a U.S. citizen either by birth or by naturalization.
Citizenship by Birth
To become a citizen at birth, an individual must (1) have been born in the U.S. or its territories; or (2) had a parent or parents who were citizens at the time the individual was born (including those individuals born abroad).
U.S. citizenship is guaranteed to those who are born in the U.S. or its territories. This guarantee comes from the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. This guarantee has created a phenomenon called “birth tourism” whereby pregnant citizens of foreign countries visit the U.S. on tourist visas so that their babies are born on U.S. soil.
Children born abroad to a U.S. citizen parent or parents are automatically U.S. citizens if certain conditions are met (i.e., the child is under the age of 18 when the parent seeks a Consular Report of Birth Abroad (FS-240)).
Citizenship by Naturalization
Naturalization is the process by which a foreign citizen is granted U.S. citizenship after he or she fulfills the lawful requirements.
To be eligible for naturalization, an individual must meet the following requirements:
- Be at least 18 years of age;
- Be a permanent resident for 5 years (less for certain individuals);
- Have good moral character;
- Pass the Naturalization test, which consists of basic U.S. history and government;
- Have resided in the U.S. and been physically present in the U.S. for a certain amount of time;
- Be able to read, write, and speak basic English (with a few limited exceptions).
USCIS publishes a Guide to Naturalization, which contains more information on the naturalization process.
Contact Genesis Law Firm to speak with a knowledgeable and experienced citizenship and naturalization attorney who can help you determine the steps needed for your unique situation. Genesis Law Firm offers high-level legal counsel at more affordable rates, and free Mandarin Chinese interpretation is available upon request.