Immigration Form N-400 is intended for Permanent Residents who wish to apply for U.S. citizenship. What are some of the qualifications when filing Form N-400?
Permanent Residents must be at least 18 years of age in order to submit Form N-400. If you are under the age of 18, you are not yet eligible to apply for citizenship, but must reach your majority before you are eligible to apply.
Duration of Permanent Residence
In order to meet the basic eligibility requirements to file Form N-400, Permanent Residents must have been a Lawful Permanent Resident for at least 5 years prior to their application. The exception would be if you or your spouse has spent time in the U.S. military and you are applying for expedited U.S. citizenship based on time spent in the military.
Continuous Residence in the United States
Permanent Residents must typically be able to prove that they have lived continuously in the United States as a Lawful Permanent Resident for the last 5 years, immediately preceding the date of filing Form N-400 to USCIS. If you have spent time outside the United States due to a military PCS move, contact USCIS using the Military Help Line at 1-877-247-4645 for more case-specific information on whether you qualify to file Form N-400.
Knowledge of English
Permanent Residents are not expected to be fluent in English, but they must have a basic understanding of the English language and be able to read, write and speak English in order to pass some of the key components of the naturalisation interview.
Knowledge of U.S. History and Government (Civics)
During the naturalisation interview, you will be asked a series of questions by the immigration officer conducting your test. You will be expected to have a pass rate of 60 percent in your test. Once you have reached the 60 percent point, the test will end.
Naturalisation is not a legal requirement for Permanent Residents. But if you are considering taking this step, you should be aware of the filing requirements to ensure that you meet these requirements before submitting your N-400 application. Permanent Residents must be able to demonstrate the required length of Permanent Residence, including physical residence in the United States just prior to filing Form N-400. To learn more about some of the other eligibility requirements for naturalisation, go to the USCIS Web site or contact a customer service representative for further information.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Naturalisation Information.