Many people come to the United States for a bevy of reasons, both bad and good. Whatever the reason for coming, one of the ultimate goals remains the same: citizenship. As a full citizen, rights are granted that allow an individual to live in the U.S., work in the U.S., and receive all of the benefits that a natural-born U.S. citizen would have.
In order to achieve this goal of full citizenship, there are a number of hurdles to clear. These hurdles range from administrative to financial, to behavioral, but once completed, they will grant the individual the right to take their palace as a full-fledged citizen.
A U.S. citizen is a person who is seen as a full member of the United States of America with all of the rights and responsibilities that entails. U.S. citizenship can be acquired or it can be granted. Most U.S. citizens are granted their status by birthright. Any person born in the U.S. or whose parent is a U.S. citizen is also granted citizenship.
Citizenship can also be acquired through the processes of immigration and naturalization. Citizenship acquired in this way is granted after a series of examinations, checks, and interviews determine that someone is eligible to become a U.S. citizen.
Transitioning fully from alien national to U.S. citizen takes many years. First, the individual must legally immigrate to the United States. This may involve months or even years of filing papers and waiting for processing. Once inside the United States, the individual must apply for lawful permanent resident status, which can take months to complete. Finally, the individual must remain a lawful permanent resident in good standing for five years before they can become a naturalized citizen.
Not including the costs associated with immigrating to the United States, applying for lawful permanent resident status, and all of the costs leading up to becoming a citizen, it costs $725. This includes the $640 to process Form N-400(Application for Naturalization) and an $85 biometrics fee.