You may become a U.S. citizen either by birth or after birth.

To become a citizen by birth, you must:

  • Have been born in the United States or certain territories or outlying possessions of the United States, and subject to the jurisdiction of the United States.
  • Had at least one U.S. citizen parent and your parent(s) who were citizens at the time of your birth

To become a citizen after birth, you must:

  • Apply for “derived” or “acquired” citizenship through parents
  • Apply through naturalization

U.S Citizenship through Naturalization


  • Have had a Permanent Resident (Green) Card for at least five years, or for at least three years if you’re filing as the spouse of a U.S. citizen.
  • You must renew your card if you are applying for naturalization less than six months before your Permanent Resident Card expires


  • At least 18 years old at the time of filing.
  • Able to read, write, and speak basic English, with some exceptions.
  • A person of good moral character

The Naturalization Test:

  • Taking the U.S. Naturalization Test (English & Civics (U.S. history and government))
  • A personal interview

 Citizenship for Military Members and Dependents:

If an applicant has served in the United States Armed Forces during war, that individual may obtain citizenship without first becoming a permanent resident if he or she was in the United States upon enlistment into the US military.