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Exceptions for Naturalization

Are you interested in becoming a U.S. citizen? Or, does one of your family members desire to become a U.S. citizen? If so, you will soon be learning about citizenship through “naturalization.”

What does naturalization mean? It refers to the process where a foreign citizen becomes a U.S. citizen after he or she fulfills all the requirements set forth by Congress in the Immigration and Nationality Act, otherwise known as the INA.

A foreign citizen may qualify for naturalization if:

  • They have been a lawful permanent resident for 5 or more years,
  • They are married to a U.S. citizen and you have been a permanent resident for at least 3 years, or
  • They have served honorably in the U.S. Armed Forces.

If you are a U.S. citizen, your child may qualify for naturalization if he or she was born in another country (not the U.S.), and they are currently living abroad, and they meet all other eligibility requirements.

Are there any exceptions or accommodations?

Yes, there are some exceptions to the naturalization requirements, which are available to certain individuals who qualify. The USCIS also makes accommodations for disabled individuals. The USCIS’s exceptions and accommodations, include:

  • English language exemptions: If you are 50 or older at the time you file for naturalization and have had a green card in the U.S. for 20 years, you are exempt from the English language requirement, but you still have to take the civics test (you can take it in your native language).
  • Medical disability exceptions to English and civics requirements: If you cannot take the English language and civics test because of a disability or mental impairment, you may not have to take these tests.
  • Continuous residence exceptions: If your employment requires you to be overseas, you may not have to meet the continuous residence requirement.
  • Disability accommodations: If your disabilities make it difficult for you to complete the naturalization process, the USCIS can provide accommodations for modifications for you.
  • Oath of Allegiance: In order for someone to be naturalized, they are required to take an oath of allegiance, however, the law provides for certain modifications to the Oath of Allegiance.

If you have further questions about citizenship through naturalization, we encourage you to contact our firm to schedule a consultation with a Plano immigration attorney.