Three important steps in becoming a naturalized citizen

After three years of lawful permanent residence in the U.S., you could look into applying for naturalization. Whether you live in New Jersey or another state, there are a few other requirements to become a U.S. citizen through naturalization. These include reading, writing and speaking basic English as well as understanding U.S. government.

Check eligibility

The USCIS has a naturalization eligibility worksheet that you can consult to determine if you’re eligible. If you are over the age of 18 and a permanent resident in the U.S., you can use the eligibility worksheet. Minors should read questions 25 and 26 on pages 13–15 in A Guide to Naturalization for information relevant to their situations.

In addition to checking the eligibility requirements, you should read about the accommodations and exemptions. You want to know before applying if you qualify for accommodations or exemptions.


The USCIS will schedule an interview when you finish the preliminary application processes. On the day of your interview, bring the appointment notice and other important documents with you. During your interview, the officer will ask about your background and your application. You will also take the civics test and the English test.

Oath of allegiance

You officially become a citizen of the U.S. once you take the oath of allegiance at a naturalization ceremony. If the USCIS approves your application, you can take the oath of allegiance. The agency will schedule the citizenship ceremony for you. When you arrive at the ceremony, the USCIS will take your permanent residence card and review your questionnaire on Form N-445. After you take the oath, you receive a certificate of naturalization.

These are three of the most important steps to know about during the naturalization process. You should make sure you’re aware of everything required before submitting your application.

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