Naturalization - Citizenship


Under Section 328 and 329 of the Immigration and Nationality Act ("INA"), members of the U.S. Armed Forces may be entitled to obtain citizenship through his or her service. Many of the same naturalization requirements apply to members of the U.S. Armed Forces; such as, having good moral character, knowledge of the English language, knowledge of U.S. government and history (civics), and most importantly, taking an Oath of Allegiance to the U.S. Constitution. However, qualified members of the U.S. armed forces are exempt from residence and physical presence requirements listed on the general requirements page for citizenship.

Service in Peacetime under INA 328

Members of the U.S. Armed Forces may apply for citizenship under Section 328 of the INA and it is available for all members who are eligible. In addition to the requirements listed above (except for the residence and physical presence requirements), he or she must have:

  1. Served honorably in the U.S. armed forces for at least one year
  2. Obtained lawful permanent resident status, and
  3. Filed a naturalization application while still in service or within six (6) month of separation.
If you are looking for affordable immigration attorneys with experience, dedication, and understanding, call us today at 405.600.9910. Free consultation available.

Service During Periods of Hostilities under INA 329

Under Section 329 of the INA, President Bush signed an executive order on July 3, 2002 allowing "all" persons who had or have served honorably in the U.S. Armed Forces to be eligible to file for citizenship during periods of hostilities. Periods of hostilities include the period from September 11, 2001 till present and also certain designated past wars and conflicts, such as, the Vietnam war, Korean war, world war I and II.

Unlike Section 328 of the INA, this allows individuals who served in the U.S. Armed Forces to apply for citizenship regardless of whether they obtained lawful permanent resident status or not. Further, this section does not require an individual to apply for citizenship within six months of separation or while still in service. Rather, Section 329 primarily requires the following:

  1. Served honorably in active-duty status for any period of time and
  2. Such active-duty service was during a specifically designated period of hostility.

Please note that there are other requirements necessary to naturalize through service through the U.S. Armed Forces. Most bases offer free immigration services for the military and their families. However, if you are still interested in hiring an attorney experienced with military naturalizations or want a free consultation, please feel free to contact us.