If you've sought after the "American dream" since you arrived in the United States, you might hope to make things official by becoming the country's newest citizen. However, you might have heard some stories from friends and others which make you fearful of starting the journey. Luckily, you don't have to be afraid of the U.S. citizenship process if you start with these pointers in mind.
Even if you're nervous, doing one task a day to reach your citizenship goal is important. Even more important is to start as immediately as you can. The process will stretch out over a number of weeks, and if you never complete an application or start collecting documents, the journey will be even longer. Commit to taking action today and every day until you're a U.S. citizen.
Don't Make Up Answers or Guess
Your application may ask questions that you're not 100 percent sure about. For example, information about past addresses or parents may be fuzzy in your memory. The temptation, of course, is to answer questions with your best guesses, but that could be an act of self-sabotage. Any discrepancies, mistakes, or errors could make your application be seen as suspicious. Be honest when filling out your application and other forms.
Study for Tests
You might already know English and already follow American politics. Therefore, you may not think much about studying for the civics test or the English test if you have to take it. Even if you think you're pretty knowledgeable, don't make the grave mistake of not looking at the practice tests and other materials that the U.S. State Department provides. Without preparation and studying, you could easily fail the tests and have to take them again, lengthening your road to U.S. Citizenship.
Disabilities, length of residence, and other life situations can make you exempt from certain parts of the U.S. naturalization process. Exemptions can make your journey much quicker, so they're worth exploration. You might be ready to take the English-language proficiency test, for instance, only to discover that it's not necessary for you. The Office of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has a list; look through the options to see if you are eligible for an immigration exemption.
Get a Lawyer
Having a U.S. immigration attorney can help you avoid a lot of the problems and issues discussed here. Contact a few today to see who you're best suited with.