You’re eligible to vote in the upcoming elections?

US citizen has the privilege to cast his/her vote.  This privilege is only for US citizens and not for green card holders. The options through which you can become a US citizen depend on the category through which you opt for it or you are eligible for. As a green card holder above the age of 18 years living in the US you need to fulfill the physical presence requirement in order to be eligible to Apply for US citizenship. Through the naturalization procedure you can become a US citizen and for this you need to file the US immigration Form N-400.

When and which immigration form should be used?

The children born to US citizen parents, even if outside US, automatically become US citizens by birth. Even if one of the parents is a citizen you qualify for US citizenship.  They need to file for the citizenship certificate using the Form N-600 if under the age of 18 years. In order to apply for US citizenship for adopted kid the US immigration Form N-600K needs to be filed. Once the formalities are done and the kid enters US they become citizens.

If it so happens that the citizenship or naturalization certificate is lost, damaged or stolen you have the Form N-565 with which you can file for a new one. The physical presence requirement is waived off in case you are in active service is any of the US armed forces assignments.

To be eligible to file the Form N-400 apart from being a green card holder above the age of 18 years having lived in the US and who fulfill the physical presence requirement, the moral good character requirement is also checked.

Part of the naturalization process also includes passing the citizenship test. In case you are above the age of 50 years and have lived in US for more than 20 years, or if above the age of 55 years and lived in US for the past 15 years you get exemption from the test.  This exemption is also applicable for persons with impairment or any disability and they need not take up the English knowledge test. Form N-648 can be used to get exemption from the citizenship test which needs to be filled by a qualified physician.

If applicant is married to a US citizen, after entering US they get the conditional status which is valid for two years. They can adjust the status to permanent lawful status after two years using the Form I-485. As a green card holder if they continue to reside in US for a three year period and are still married they are eligible to Apply for US citizenship using the Form N-400.

The US citizenship entitles applicant with the right to vote, allows you to petition for family members to come to US, enables you to travel abroad freely and you can join the judiciary and take up legal duty. As US citizens they need to abide by the constitution and be loyal citizens of US. Thus to enjoy your right and as your duty to your country make sure you are a US citizen with the right to cast your vote and take part in the process of electing a government of your choice!

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