Apply for Naturalization Before Fee Increases on October 2, 2020

Can you name three of the thirteen original states? Do you know one thing Benjamin Franklin is famous for?  These are just a few of the 100 possible history and government questions on the naturalization test to become a U.S. citizen.  The exam itself requires you to get 6 out of 10 questions correct.  To take the self-test on USCIS’s website: https://www.uscis.gov/sites/default/files/document/questions-and-answers/100q.pdf

In addition to the civics questions, there is also a written and oral section to test your English.  For the reading test, you must read one out of three sentences correctly.  For the writing test, you must write one out of the three sentences correctly.

Certain applicants, because of their age and time as a Permanent Resident, are exempt from the English requirements for naturalization and may take the civics test in the language of their choice. For more information, see exceptions and accommodations.

To be eligible for naturalization and become a U.S. citizen, you must:

  • Be at least 18 years of age at the time you file the application;
  • Have been a lawful permanent resident for the past three or five years (three if married to U.S. citizen; five if you were sponsored by an employer);
  • Have continuous residence and physical presence in the United States;
  • Be able to read, write, and speak basic English;
  • Demonstrate good moral character;
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of U.S. history and government;
  • Demonstrate loyalty to the principles of the U.S. Constitution; and
  • Be willing to take the Oath of Allegiance.

To review the special provisions for those who have served in the U.S. military, please see Naturalization through Military Service.

The N-400 Application for Naturalization can be filed online or by mail:  https://www.uscis.gov/forms/explore-my-options/becoming-a-us-citizen-through-naturalization.

USCIS just published new fees to become effective as of 10/02/2020.  The N-400 application fees are going from $725 ($640 + $85 biometric fee) to $1,200 ($1,170 + $30 biometric fee).  That’s $475 more per person!  You can save $10 if filing online.

Consider filing for naturalization before October to take advantage of the lower fee.  Our Immigration Team can assist you.

About the Author: Robin Vermette

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