Requirements for Citizenship
- Must have been a legal permanent resident for at least 5 years or 3 years if you are married to a U.S. citizen
- Must have lived in the U.S. for at least half of those 5 / 3 years
- Must be at least 18 years old
What You'll Need
- Your green card and social security card
- List of ALL trips taken outside of the US for the last 5 years
- Home address for the last 5 / 3 years
- School/Employment history for the last 5 / 3 years
- Family information (dates of birth, A numbers, addresses of all children and spouses)*
- Marital history*
- Criminal history*
General Information about Citizenship
USCIS Citizenship Resource Center
This website provides information, study tools and other resources for individuals who are interested in applying for naturalization.
Eligibility for Naturalization
Citizenship for Military Members
This resource provides information to help members of the U.S. military apply for naturalization.
Selective Service System
This website provides information about the requirements of Selective Service, allows users to check a registration, and allows users to register online for Selective Service.
FBI Criminal Background Check
This website provides information to individuals who want to request a criminal background check. A criminal background check can provide information about an individual's criminal history in the United States.
State Criminal Records
This website provides contact numbers and information to help individuals obtain a criminal record from the state of California.
Forms, Fees, and Fee Waivers
USCIS Application for Naturalization (Form N-400)
This form is used to apply for naturalization.
USCIS Request for Fee Waiver (Form I-912)
This form can be used to request a waiver of filing fees for an application filed with USCIS. A fee waiver request must be based on an inability to pay.
Naturalization Fee Waiver Eligibility Calculator
You can use this calculator, produced by the New Americans Campaign (NAC), to determine whether you qualify for the fee waiver (I-912), reduced fee (I-942), or if you must pay the full fee.
USCIS Request for Certification of Military or Naval Service (Form N-426)
This form is used by military applicants for naturalization, in addition to Form N-400.
USCIS Appeal Form (Form N-336)
This form is used to appeal the denial of an N-400.
USCIS Document Checklist for Form N-400
This checklist provides information about the documents that a naturalization applicant must include with their N-400 application.
Preparing for the English and Civics Tests
This directory provides guidance on finding an ESL (English as a Second Language) or citizenship/civics education class.
USCIS Study Materials for the English Test
This resource provides tools to help individuals study for the English test. These tools include vocabulary lists, flash cards and videos.
USCIS Study Materials for the Civics Test
This resource provides tools to help individuals study for the civics test. These tools include lists of civics questions, flash cards, videos and audio tools.
USCIS Test Scoring Guidelines
This resource provides information about how USCIS scores the English and civics tests during the naturalization interview.
Exceptions to English or Civics Requirements
USICS Medical Certification for Disability Exceptions (Form N-648)
This form can be used by individuals who are applying for naturalization and want to request an exception to the English and/or civics tests based on a "physical or developmental disability or mental impairment."
Information for New Citizens
How Do I Help My Relative Become a Lawful Permanent Resident?
This brochure provides information for U.S. citizens about helping family members become lawful permanent residents.
U.S. Citizens Rights and Responsibilities
This resource provides information about the rights and responsibilities of being a United States citizen.
Apply for a U.S. Passport
This section of the Department of State's website provides information about how to apply for a United States passport once you become a U.S. citizen.
The Santa Clara County Citizenship Collaborative includes: Asian Law Alliance; Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County; and is co-led by Center for Employment Training (CET); Office of Immigrant Affairs (OIA) and Services, Immigrant Rights and Education Network (SIREN).
The Silicon Valley New American Campaign Collaborative includes: Asian Law Alliance; Catholic Charities of Santa Clara County; Center for Employment Training (CET); and International Rescue Committee of San Jose (IRC) and is led by Services, Immigrant Rights and Education Network (SIREN).