Many find the application process for U.S. citizenship to be difficult and overwhelming. The U.S. expects a lot from citizenship applicants and it’s difficult to keep up with these expectations. Applicants can receive a denial when they make a mistake or they don’t fully understand the application process. Learning about five of the common reasons the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office denies applications can help you prepare to avoid denial.
Accidental or Purposeful Application Fraud
Your N-400 application form for U.S. citizenship will request various pieces of information about you, such as your legal name. Spelling your legal name correctly and providing accurate information to other questions is necessary to successfully file for citizenship. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services may deny your application if they deem a piece of information inaccurate. Accidental and purposeful inaccuracies can result in a denial.
Failure To Maintain Physical Presence
Part of the application is claiming residence in a particular state or district and maintaining a physical presence within the U.S. for a given amount of time. Physical presence often means spending at least six months of every year for the past five years within the U.S. You must also have resided in the claimed state or district for the past three months. Failure to have done so can cause an application denial.
Lack of Good Moral Character
Good moral character is a broad category that mostly refers to your legal standing. The government will check your criminal history for the past five years and possibly longer during your application process. Minor infractions such as illegal gambling and habitual drunkenness can result in an application denial. Major infractions such as murder or terrorist acts can result in deportation.
Your financial standing will also relate to how the government views your moral character. Failure to pay court-required child support or file your taxes properly can result in an application denial. You should request help if you have financial problems that prevent you from making payments or filing taxes in a timely manner. Requesting help and doing the best you can with your current financial problems shows the government that you have a good moral character and that you’re just in a tough spot.
Failing Your English and Civics Test a Second Time
While the U.S. government expects a lot from citizenship applicants, they don’t expect perfection in every area. You can fail your first English and civics test and still successfully file your citizenship application. However, the government can deny your citizenship if you don’t schedule another test within 60-90 days and pass it.
Don’t give up on your naturalization process if you’ve experienced one of these five common reasons for U.S. citizenship denial. While it is complicated, Gahagan Law Firm can help. As an immigration law firm, we are extremely knowledgeable and have a proven track record that can help you and your loved ones through the immigration process.