Even if you are a lawful permanent resident (LPR) you can face deportation if you are convicted of certain crimes. Even if you have no criminal contact you need to renew your permanent resident card every ten years and maintain sufficient contacts in the United States as to not abandon your lawful permanent resident status. For many foreign nationals obtaining U.S. citizenship is the only way in which to ensure your residence in the United States is permanent.
Not everyone is qualified to become a U.S. citizen. Attorney Ashley E. Lively can assist in analyzing each specific scenario to determine whether or not you qualify. The ways in which you can qualify for citizenship are:
- Lawful permanent residents (LPRs) who have been in the United States as an LPR for at least 5 years
- Lawful permanent residents (LPRs) married to and living with a United States citizen spouse for at least 3 years
- Members of the United States armed forces with qualifying service records
- Children of United States citizens who were born outside of the United States
In general, foreign nationals for naturalization must meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Be 18 years old or older
- Have lived in their current state of residence for at least 3 months
- Maintained continuance residence in the U.S for at least 5 years
- Be physically present in the U.S. for at least half of the last 5 years
- Live in the U.S. continuously from the date of application until the time of naturalization
- Demonstrate an ability to read, write, and English and pass a Civics test
- Demonstrate good moral character
Criminal convictions and even arrests may interfere with your citizenship process. Other life factors such as divorce, travel, child support and tax issues can also affect your citizenship case. If you have had any contact with law enforcement, issues with a family court or the IRS it is crucial to discuss these factors with an experienced immigration attorney. Not only could these factors cause USCIS to deny your citizenship application it could result in the initiation of removal proceedings against you.
Recent changes to immigration law and policy can make legal permanent residents unsure about their status. Becoming a U.S. citizen is the best way to protect yourself from uncertainty in the immigration process. Get the help of an experienced immigration attorney, who can help you understand the process, determine your eligibility, and be certain everything is filed correctly. Contact Attorney Ashley E. Lively today to schedule a consultation and start your naturalization process today.