Citizenship

En español

Are you ready to become a U.S citizen? If you are, then we are here to help. Apply for citizenship through the naturalization process in two easy steps!

1st STEP

The 1st step is to check if you meet the requirements for citizenship, which are:

  • Be at least 18 years old
  • Be a person of good moral character
  • 5 years as a Lawful Permanent Resident or 3 years if married to a U.S. citizen
  • 5 years living in the United States without major absences out of the country
  • 3 months living in San Diego County
  • Willingness to take an oath of loyalty to the United States

2nd STEP

The 2nd step is to seek the assistance of someone who is qualified to help you:

Alliance San Diego is currently providing free services for naturalization. To find out if you qualify for the free services, click here to complete an online assessment.

If you received an appointment from Alliance San Diego, print the following document and complete it before your appointment date: Preparation_Packet_for_Appointments

Click here to see a list of low-cost attorneys and legal service providers

BENEFITS OF BECOMING A US CITIZEN:

  • No need to renew your Green Card (it costs $450+ legal fees!)
  • The risk of deportation is eliminated
  • It is easier to travel and re-enter the United States
  • Take long trips outside of the United States without it affecting your status
  • Ability to petition family
  • Ability for your green-card-holding children to become U.S. citizens
  • Ability to vote and run for public office
  • Ability to obtain federal jobs, grants, and other government benefits
  • Tax and estate incentives
  • Ability to obtain and travel with a U.S. passport

FEE WAIVERS 

Fee waiver are available if you meet one of these scenarios:

For examples of Fee Waiver evidence, click here: Example of Fee Waiver Evidence

LANGUAGE EXEMPTIONS

You may be exempt from the English language requirement if you are:

  • Age 50 or older at the time of filing for naturalization and have lived as a permanent resident (green card holder) in the United States for 20 years

OR

  • Age 55 or older at the time of filing for naturalization and have lived as a permanent resident in the United States for 15 years

Note: You are still required to take the Civics test, even if you are exempt from the English language requirement.

MEDICAL DISABILITY EXEMPTIONS

You may be eligible for an exception to the English and civics naturalization requirements if you are unable to comply with these requirements because of a physical or developmental disability or a mental impairment.

To request this exception, submit Form N-648, Medical Certification for Disability Exceptions. This form must be completed by a licensed medical or osteopathic doctor, or licensed clinical psychologists

HELPFUL LINKS:

Receive legal assistance to apply for naturalization

Information from USCIS on becoming a U.S. Citizen through Naturalization

Study materials from USCIS for the Naturalization Test

Application to become a naturalized U.S. Citizen N-400

Fee waiver application I-912

Reduced Waiver application I-942

Find a community college that can help you learn English and study for the interview