To make their dream come true, applicants must:
- Be 18 years of age or older when filling the N-400 form.
- Have been permanent residents for, at least, 5 years (or 3 years in case the applicant is married to an American citizen).
- Have lived for, at least, 3 months in the same state of the USCIS office where they are going to submit the documents.
- Have not been outside the U.S. for more than six months in the current year.
- Prove their continuous residence in the U.S., and that they have lived there for, at least, 30 months during the 5 years previous to the application.
- Be able to read, write and speak English, apart from having basic knowledge of U.S. government and history. There are exceptions to this rule: it all depends on the applicant’s age, how long he or she has lived in the U.S. and their knowledge of U.S. history and government.
- Be a person of good moral character.
If the applicant meets all these requirements, the USCIS will set an appointment so he or she can take the naturalization test. This test consists of three parts: an interview, a written and an oral English test, and a civics test.
The final step to get the naturalization is the oath. The applicant must be willing to support and defend the United States and its constitution.
During the application procedure, the immigrant must stay in the United States.