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What are the naturalization requirements to become a citizen?

On Behalf of | Jan 8, 2022 | Citizenship |

To become a citizen of the United States through naturalization is to go through a process that grants you all the same rights and privileges as natural-born citizens.

To be eligible for naturalization, you have to meet certain requirements. The Miami Herald describes the requirements you must meet to be eligible to apply for citizenship and go through the naturalization process.

Residence and physical presence

Before you can apply for citizenship, you have to have lived as a lawful permanent resident of the United States for five consecutive years and been physically present in the U.S. for at least 30 months during that time. If your spouse is a U.S. citizen, the required lengths of time are shorter.


You must have knowledge of U.S. history and government and a basic ability to communicate in English. You do not need to gain this education before coming to the United States; you can take classes on these topics as a lawful permanent resident.

Good moral character

To show good moral character is to avoid submitting false information during the immigration process and to maintain a clean criminal record. You are ineligible for naturalization if you have a history of conviction of an aggravated felony.


Applicants for naturalization must be at least 18 years old. If you are younger, you can become a citizen automatically if one of your parents is a citizen by virtue of birth or naturalization, but other circumstances have to apply.

If you meet the eligibility requirements, you can submit an application for naturalization. If approved, you can undergo the process to become a citizen.