After USCIS approves your Application for Naturalization (Form N-400), you will then be scheduled to attend a Naturalization Ceremony and participate in the Oath of Allegiance which is the final part of the process in becoming a U.S. citizen.
Types of Ceremonies
- Judicial Ceremony, the court organizes the Oath of Allegiance
- Administrative Ceremony, USCIS directs the Oath of Allegiance
Events that Take Place at an Oath of Allegiance Ceremony.
It is possible that you can attend a naturalization ceremony on the same day of your interview. If there is no available ceremony open, an updated notification with a date, time and location, will be sent to you via US mail.
Note that if for some reason you cannot attend scheduled naturalization ceremony, resend the Notice of Naturalization Oath for Form 445, immediately, and include a letter petitioning a new date, explaining why you are not able to attend the specific date for the naturalization ceremony.
Failure to notify USCIS and missing two naturalization ceremonies can result in a denial of your Naturalization application.
Be Sure to Sign In
It is important to sign in with USCIS upon arrival at the naturalization ceremony. A USCIS agent will examine your questionnaire and answers, Form N-445, Notice of Naturalization Oath Ceremony. An incomplete Form N-445 can cause problems when signing in with USCIS.
No Need for your Legal Permanent Resident Card
Return your lawful permanent resident card when you sign in with USCIS for your naturalization ceremony.
If your card has been lost, misplaced or stolen, and if you were not provided with a legal permanent resident status because of your military service overseas or some other reason, submit evidence to corroborate your story.
The legal permanent resident card will no longer be needed because at the naturalization ceremony you will receive a Certificate of Naturalization after you have taken the Oath of Allegiance.
Oath of Allegiance Ceremony
Without taking the oath of allegiance at a naturalization ceremony, no Certificate of Naturalization will be granted.
Obtain Certificate of Naturalization
Before you leave the ceremony, ensure that you keenly review the Certificate of Naturalization and alert USCIS of any mistakes. If no errors are found on your certificate of naturalization you are free to leave. Your Naturalization Certificate in now your official evidence that you are a United States citizen.
Remember that if you lose your certificate of naturalization, you can file for a replacement by submitting a Form N-565, Application for Replacement Naturalization Citizenship Document.
The Form N-565 can be requested by calling your local USCIS office at (1-800-870-3676) or you can contact your nearest immigration attorney to assist you. Note that there is a filing fee of $345.
Now that you have become a U.S. citizen you can begin the following:
Submitting your Application for a U.S. Passport
It is highly recommended that when applying for U.S. passport it is done with the U.S. Department of State immediately after the Oath of Allegiance has been taken. Do not plan to travel abroad before you receive your U.S. passport.
- Besides certificate of naturalization, a U.S. passport also serves as authorized evidence of U.S. citizenship.
- A passport application will be provided at the naturalization ceremony within the U.S. citizenship welcome packet. Passport applications can also be obtained at almost every U.S. Post Offices or online at the http://travel.state.gov website.
Initiate the Voter Registration Process
Voting in the United States as a U.S. citizen is a right and responsibility after receiving U.S. citizenship. Every person who takes the Oath of Allegiance at an administrative ceremony will be granted the opportunity to register to vote. Voting forms may be issued by a state or local government elections headquarters.
Non-governmental organizations may be able to assist you with registering to vote and submitting your voting registration form during a USCIS naturalization ceremony but they are not allowed to use any of your personal information.
If you suspect that an NGO that assisted you with your voter’s registration used your personal information at any time, you can report them to USCIS immediately.
Other places to submit your voter’s registration application are areas within your locality such as post offices, motor vehicles offices, county boards of election and offices of your state Secretary of State. Those who are interested can see A Voter’s Guide to Federal Elections.
Update Social Security Record
Wait ten days after the naturalization ceremony before updating the social security record at your nearest Social Security Administration (SSA), this way information within the system will reflect that your naturalization status has been updated. Take your U.S. passport along with your certificate of naturalization when visiting with the SSA office.
Consult with an Expert Illinois Immigration Attorney Today
Congratulations you are now a U.S. citizen! If you are to ever need assistance from an immigration attorney contact The Gambacorta Law Office at 847-443-9303. You can schedule an appointment at any of our offices in Arizona, Illinois.
Learn more about obtaining official proof of U.S. citizenship.