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How Long Does It Take to Get My U.S. Citizenship


I got my Green Card based on my marriage to a U.S. Citizen. How long does it take to get U.S. Citizenship after the Green Card?


Most U.S. Permanent Residents have to wait 5 years after receiving Green Card to qualify for U.S. Citizenship. However, the immigration law gives a break to spouses of U.S. Citizens.

If you are a U.S. permanent or conditional resident, you cannot apply for U.S. citizenship until you have lived in U.S. as a lawful permanent resident for at least five years. That means exactly five years to the day. You can check your U.S. permanent resident card for the exact date on which you became a permanent resident.

If you start out as a conditional resident rather than a permanent resident, because you got your residence through your marriage to a U.S. citizen, your two years as a conditional resident count as permanent residence.

If you have been married for at least 3 years, and your spouse has been a U.S. Citizen for at least 3 years, you are eligible for citizenship 3 years after you become U.S. Permanent Resident. Actually, you are allowed to apply for naturalization 3 months before the end of your 3 year residence.

The U.S. citizenship application must be submitted by mail, using USCIS Form N-400. USCIS will take a long time to process the N-400, to arrange for you to be fingerprinted, and to call you in for the interview at which it actually reviews your application, tests you on your knowledge of English and U.S. government, and makes a decision on whether to approve or deny you. USCIS may take at least 90 days to call you in for your interview.




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