In order to become a U.S. citizen, you must demonstrate that you have been a permanent resident of the United States for at least 4 years and 9 months (or 2 years and 9 months if you obtained permanent residence through a U.S. citizen spouse and are still married to the U.S. citizen). Additionally, you must show that you have been physically present in the U.S. for at least half of the preceding five-year period (30 months) and that you have not made any trips abroad that lasted 180 days or longer. Finally, you must demonstrate that you are a person of good moral character.
Once your application is filed, you will be invited to appear for a fingerprint appointment and, several months later, for your naturalization interview. At the interview, USCIS will administer a test of your knowledge of American civics (history and government), as well as your ability to read, write and speak English. We will provide additional information about this test when your case is in progress. For the civics portion of the naturalization test, the USCIS Officer will ask you up to 10 of the 100 predetermined civics questions. You must answer at least six out of 10 questions correctly in order to pass the civics test. To test your knowledge of the English language, you will be asked to read and write a sentence in English. You must be able to read and write one out of three offered sentences correctly to pass the reading and writing tests. Your ability to speak English will be determined by your answers to questions normally asked by USCIS Officers during the naturalization interview.
After you pass the test, you will be scheduled to appear for a ceremony, where you will be sworn in as a U.S. citizen.