Celebrating Independence Day with 15,000 New American Citizens

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) celebrated the 4th of July with more than 65 naturalization ceremonies around the country. Between June 30 and July 4, USCIS administered the Oath of Allegiance to more than 15,000 new citizens.

You can watch the video of the ceremony that took place on the deck of the USS New Jersey in Camden, New Jersey. Though this was just one small group among the 15,000 people naturalized during the Independence Day holiday week, immigrants from 33 countries became American citizens during the New Jersey ceremony. It was a great day for these new citizens and for all Americans, as people who have worked hard and dedicated themselves to building productive lives in the United States took their oath and became U.S. citizens.

Benefits of Citizenship

Gaining U.S. citizenship is a matter of great pride for many immigrants, but naturalization offers more than an opportunity to demonstrate loyalty to the United States. Some key benefits include:

  1. A naturalized U.S. citizen gains the right to vote in the United States
  2. A naturalized citizen can be issued and travel on a U.S. passport, thereby avoiding long lines at the airport and potential questioning by immigration authorities
  3. Relatives of U.S. citizens typically have priority status for immigration purposes
  4. A naturalized citizen becomes eligible for many governmental jobs that require U.S. citizenship
  5. A naturalized citizen enjoys eligibility for government benefits such as Social Security and Medicare

U.S. Naturalization Facts

Tens of millions of naturalized citizens from dozens of countries around the world are living and working in the United States today. Here’s a bit more information about those who have chosen to become citizens:

  1. About 680,000 new citizens are welcomed to the United States in naturalization ceremonies each year.
  2. Over the past 15 years, more than 100,000 foreign nationals have been granted U.S. citizenship after serving in the United States armed services.
  3. Roughly ¾ of naturalized citizens live in just 10 U.S. states: California, New York, Florida, Texas, New Jersey, Illinois, Virginia, Massachusetts, Georgia, and Pennsylvania.

The most common ways an adult may qualify to become a U.S. citizen through the naturalization process are: holding a green card for at least five years, holding a green card based on a marriage to a U.S. citizen for at least three years, and serving in the U.S. military. For most people, the naturalization process from application through approval and swearing in takes between six months and one year, although some cases take shorter or longer.  For most people, the process includes an interview, an English test, and a civics test.

The Alagiri Immigration Law Firm Helps People Become U.S. Citizens

The naturalization process may seem daunting, but with the help of a qualified immigration attorney, it can often be a smooth and relatively quick process.

Whether you are a permanent legal resident ready to pursue the next step and apply for citizenship or you are seeking a green card as the first step on your journey to citizenship, we can help. To learn more, call (650) 931-2509, email info@alagirilaw.com, or fill out the contact form on this site.