This is a reminder of the requirements to become a citizen of the US. I write this because many clients who come and see me make some wrong assumptions about what they need to qualify for citizenship. So here are the requirements:
- You must be a permanent resident for 5 years.
- You must pass a pretty easy 10 question test about US history. Here’s the link to the 100 possible questions that they can ask from.
- You either have to owe nothing in federal income taxes or be up to date on a payment plan to pay your back taxes.
- You either have to owe no child support or be up to date on child support payments.
- You have to have a clean criminal record for ONLY the last 5 years. Traffic problems like speeding, driving without a license, obstruction of a passageway, public intoxication are minor offenses and do not count against you. All class A misdemeanors and felonies will count against you and you’ll have to wait 5 years from your arrest to apply again.
- You must speak English.
If you are 50 years old AND have been a permanent resident for 20 years, you can take the citizenship test in your native language. If you’re 55 years old and been a resident for 15 years, you can take the test in your native language.
The filing fee for citizenship is either $725, $405, or free, depending on how much you report on your tax return. My fees are $1,200 for a new client, and $1,000 if you are a returning client.
Call me at 512-912-7771 if you have any questions about your situation.