In order to qualify for Naturalization you must meet certain requirements.  U.S. immigration law provides exceptions to some of these requirements.

MILITARY SERVICE

EXCEPTIONS TO THE REQUIREMENTS

Veterans and Those in Military Service

If you are a U.S. military veteran or someone in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, or in certain components of the National Guard or the Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve, you may be able to naturalize without meeting the normal residence and physical presence requirements. You are also exempt from paying the application and biometrics fees.

Individuals presently serving in the U.S. military during time of war, qualify for naturalization regardless of immigration status. For the purposes of this rule, the country has been at war as of September 11, 2001.

Service members who recently separated from service qualify for naturalization even if they don’t meet the Continuous Residence and Physical Presence and the three month state residency requirements if they:

  • Have served honorably, in active duty or reserve service, for a period or periods adding up to one year or more,
  • Are permanent residents, and
  • Apply during service or within six months of the termination of service.

Under Section 329 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), any person who has served honorably as a member of the Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve or in an active-duty status in the military, air, or naval forces of the United States may qualify for naturalization, even if they are not lawful permanent residents, if:

  • They are veterans who serve(d) in active duty or are (were) in the Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve during one of the following designated periods of conflict:
    • April 6, 1917 – November 11, 1918
    • September 1, 1939 – December 31, 1946
    • June 25, 1950 – July 1, 1955
    • February 28, 1961 – October 15, 1978
    • September 11, 2001 – Present
  • At the time of enlistment, reenlistment, extension of enlistment, or induction they are/were physically present in the United States or a qualifying area, whether or not they have been lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence, or at any time subsequent to enlistment or induction they are/were lawfully admitted to the United States for permanent residence.

DOCUMENTS TO SUBMIT WITH YOUR N-400 APPLICATION

N-400, Application for Naturalization submitted by a member of the military must be accompanied by Form N-426, Request for Certification of Military or Naval Service, a copy of the permanent resident card (if applicable), and two passport-style photos. No fees are required. Also note that as of February 18, 2010, Form G-325B, Biographic Information, is no longer required for any Form N-400 that is pending or filed under section 328 or 329 of the Act.

MORE INFORMATION

More information for members of the military and their families is available on the USCIS website at www.uscis.gov/military or by calling the USCIS military helpline at 877-CIS-4MIL (877-247-4645).

AGE

EXCEPTIONS TO THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE REQUIREMENT

Certain older, long-time lawful permanent residents can request to be interviewed and tested on civics in their native language. If on the date of submitting the application the applicant is 50 years or older and has been a permanent resident for 20 years (50/20) or the applicant is 55 years or older and has been a permanent resident for 15 years (55/15), then he/she may ask for the interview and exam to be conducted in his/her native language. If you qualify for the 50/20 or 55/15 exemption, you will still need to study the 100 questions and pass the civics portion of the test, but in your own language. During your interview, you must correctly answer at least 6 out of 10 questions in order to pass the exam.

If you are 65 years of age or older and you have been a permanent resident for at least 20 years (65/20) at the time you submit your application for naturalization, not only can you take the civics exam in your own language but USCIS permits you to study from a list of only 20 questions. To pass the exam, you must correctly answer at least 6 out of 10 questions.

CIVICS QUESTIONS FOR THE ELDERLY

Below is the list of 20 civics questions for applicants who meet the 65/20 rule.

1. What is one right or freedom from the First Amendment?

  • speech
  • religion
  • assembly
  • press
  • petition the government

2. What is the economic system in the United States?

  • capitalist economy
  • market economy

3. Name one branch or part of the government.

  • Congress
  • legislative
  • President
  • executive
  • the courts
  • judicial

4. What are the two parts of the U.S. Congress?

the Senate and House (of Representatives)

5. Who is one of your state’s U.S. Senators now?

Find your Senator at www.senate.gov (See the drop down menu at the top right of the page). [District of Columbia residents and residents of U.S. territories should answer that D.C. (or the territory where the applicant lives) has no U.S. Senators.]

6. In what month do we vote for President?

November

7. What is the name of the President of the United States now?

  • Donald J. Trump
  • Donald Trump
  • Trump

8. What is the capital of your state?

Answers will vary. [District of Columbia residents should answer that D.C. is not a state and does not have a capital. Residents of U.S. territories should name the capital of the territory.]

9. What are the two major political parties in the United States?

Democratic and Republican

10. What is one responsibility that is only for United States citizens?

  • serve on a jury
  • vote in a federal election

11. How old do citizens have to be to vote for President?

eighteen (18) and older

12. When is the last day you can send in federal income tax forms?

April 15

13. Who was the first President?

(George) Washington

14. What was one important thing that Abraham Lincoln did?

  • freed the slaves (Emancipation Proclamation)
  • saved (or preserved) the Union
  • led the United States during the Civil War

15. Name one war fought by the United States in the 1900s.

  • World War I
  • World War II
  • Korean War
  • Vietnam War
  • (Persian) Gulf War

16. What did Martin Luther King, Jr. do?

  • fought for civil rights
  • worked for equality for all Americans

17. What is the capital of the United States?

Washington, D.C.

18. Where is the Statue of Liberty?

  • New York (Harbor)
  • Liberty Island [Also acceptable are New Jersey, near New York City, and on the Hudson (River).]

19. Why does the flag have 50 stars?

  • because there is one star for each state
  • because each star represents a state
  • because there are 50 states

20. When do we celebrate Independence Day?

July 4

 

USCIS has listed these questions in six languages in their USCIS website. Click below for the links to each language:

DISABILITY

Exception to the English Literacy and/or Civic Knowledge Requirement

If you have a disability that makes you unable to speak, read, write or learn English, or comply with the civics knowledge requirements, then you must apply for a disability waiver. To apply for this exemption, your medical doctor or clinical psychologist must fill out Form N-648, Medical Certification for Disability Exceptions. The completed form should be filed with your Form N-400, Application for Naturalization. You must also indicate on Part 2, Question 11 of the Form N-400 that you are requesting a waiver of the test.

Note: Requesting a mental impairment or physical disability exemption does not guarantee that you will be excused from the testing requirement. USCIS will decide whether to approve or deny your request at the interview.

If you have a disability that makes you unable to speak, read, write or learn English, or comply with the civics knowledge requirements, then you must apply for a disability waiver. To apply for this exemption, your medical doctor or clinical psychologist must fill out Form N-648, Medical Certification for Disability Exceptions. The completed form should be filed with your Form N-400, Application for Naturalization. You must also indicate on Part 2, Question 11 of the Form N-400 that you are requesting a waiver of the test.

Note: Requesting a mental impairment or physical disability exemption does not guarantee that you will be excused from the testing requirement. USCIS will decide whether to approve or deny your request at the interview.

Exception to the Allegiance to the U.S. Government Requirement

If an applicant for citizenship has a physical or developmental disability or mental impairment which prevents him/her from understanding the meaning of the oath, you can apply for a waiver from the oath requirement. There is no particular form that is used to apply for the waiver, but a detailed written evaluation completed by your medical doctor or clinical psychologist must be submitted with Form N-400, Application for Naturalization. The evaluation must explain why and how the applicant is unable to understand the Oath of Allegiance. The applicant must also have a court appointed guardian or surrogate or certain designated U.S. citizen family members who can take the oath on his/her behalf.