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Naturalization or Residence Renewal?

Updated: May 2, 2023

Has the time come for you to renew your permanent green card and are you debating whether to apply for citizenship? In this blog we explain the benefits of becoming a citizen of the United States.

If you have lived in the United States for a period of five years as a permanent resident (or three years, in the case of residents who are married to American citizens) you may apply for Naturalization and obtain American citizenship. Many people do not opt for this benefit, for different reasons.

Becoming a citizen of the United States carries out various benefits as well as responsibilities. First, by becoming a United States citizen, you avoid deportation to your home country. If you are a permanent resident, and are involved in criminal proceedings, you may be deported to your home country, no matter how many years you have resided in the United States. By becoming an American citizen, that possibility is eliminated.

When you receive an American passport, you can travel to more than 180 countries without applying for a visa. American passport holders can enter more than 180 countries for a period of 30 days without the need to apply for a visa. Also, by obtaining citizenship, you can stay outside the United States as long as you want. As a permanent resident, your trips outside the country cannot extend to more than one year. As a citizen, you will be able to stay out of the country as long as you see fit, and you will not lose any rights.

Upon receiving US citizenship, you will also have the right to obtain certain federal benefits that are only intended for American citizens. In the same way, you will be able to access federal jobs that are only reserved for American citizens, and generally these jobs have greater benefits than jobs in the private sector.

Another benefit of becoming a US citizen is the fact that you can vote in elections, and you could also be elected for office. If you are interested in working for the public service, the only way to do so is becoming a citizen. Residents do not have the right to vote, nor do they have the right to be elected.

If you naturalize, the family petition immigration processes become more expeditious, and your children under the age of 18 automatically become American citizens. Lastly, in economic terms, it is cheaper to naturalize than to continue renewing your green card. The naturalization payment is made only once, while if you continue to be a permanent resident, every ten years it will be necessary to renew the permanent residence card.

Becoming a citizen of the United States also carries responsibilities. When you become a citizen, you will have to file taxes throughout your life, even if you reside outside the United States. You must also appear to serve as a jury if required, and you must register to serve in the military if applicable.

The benefits of naturalization are much greater than the responsibilities that come with it. If you already have the time, don't wait any longer and start your naturalization process. At Y. Morejon Attorney, P.A. we can help you. Call us to schedule your first free consultation. At Y. Morejon Attorney, P.A. your problem is our problem.

Legal Disclaimer Any information made available by the lawyer or law firm is for educational purposes only, as well as to give you general information and general understanding of the law, NOT to provide specific advice. This does NOT create a relationship attorney-client between you and Y. Morejon Attorney, P.A. This information should NOT be use as a substitute for competent legal advice from a licensed professional attorney in your state.

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