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San Diego Citizenship & Naturalization Attorney

Helping Families Find New Life in the U.S.

We have helped many people and their families become American citizens and settle into a new life in the United States. We look forward to helping you through what is often a confusing and stressful process. It is rewarding for us to know that our professional experience has helped our clients pursue the American dream that isn’t always available to everyone.

How to Naturalize & Become a United States Citizen

The first step at becoming a U.S. citizen is to apply for and become a lawful permanent resident. You must be a lawful permanent resident for at least five years if you’re not married to a U.S. citizen spouse. If you are married to a U.S. citizen spouse, you can apply for naturalization and citizenship in three years. Once you’ve met this timeline, you will be allowed to proceed with the Naturalization process by filing the N-400 and supporting documents.

Eligibility requirements for naturalization:

  • Be 18 years of age or older
  • Be green card holder for at least 5 years when filing your N-400 application
  • Have continuous residence in the United States for at least 5 years at the time of filing the application
  • Be physically present in the United States for at least 30 months out of the 5 years prior to filing the application
  • Be a person of good moral character and loyal to the United States
  • Be able to read, write, and speak English
  • Have basic knowledge and an understanding of U.S. history and government
  • Pass a history/government exam

If the applicant is more than 55 years old and has lived in the United States for 15 years or has been a resident for 20 years and is over 50 years old, he or she can take the naturalization exam in their native language. There are some people that might be able to become a U. S. citizen if one of their parents is or was a U.S. citizen under the Child Citizenship Act or as a Derivative Citizen, even if the person was born in another country.

The Child Citizenship Act

A child born outside the United States on or after February 28, 1983, has U.S. citizen parents he or she will automatically acquire U.S. citizenship if the following conditions are satisfied:

  • At least one parent is a citizen by birth or naturalization;
  • The child is under 18 years of age;
  • The child resides in the United States and was lawfully admitted into the United States; and
  • The child is in the legal and physical custody of the U.S. citizen parent.

Children that were adopted may also acquire U.S. citizenship even if adopted abroad if certain requirements are met.

Eligibility for Derivative Citizenship

A child that is not eligible under the Child Citizenship Act may still be able to acquire citizenship by virtue of his or her parent or parents’ birth or naturalization. If the child does not qualify through the U.S. citizen parent, he or she might still be able to acquire citizenship through a U.S. citizen grandparent, depending on the child’s date of birth. The careful evaluation and analysis is needed along with supporting documentation.

If you are a permanent resident and want to apply for naturalization to become a U.S. citizen, call our San Diego citizenship attorney at (619) 332-1703 for a free evaluation of your particular situation.

They've Been Where You're At

Past Clients Share Their Experience
  • This process took over a year because of the court's backlog but through it, all John stayed positive, kept us on track, and my family and I couldn't be more grateful and thankful for all of his hard work.

    - Kristen S.
  • They answered all my questions!

    - Chen D.
  • They are professional and they reply to your inquiries quickly.

    - Hamza S.
  • John R. Rodriguez Photo
    John R. Rodriguez

    Founding Attorney

    John R. Rodriguez is a San Diego skilled trial lawyer with experience that will make a difference in your criminal or immigration case. His combined experience as a trial lawyer, former police officer, and as a private investigator has culminated into a successful legal career with a proven track record that his clients can rely on. My personal commitment: I grew up in Houston where hard work, doing my best, and fighting for what is right were important values in the Latino community. It is my ...
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Why Choose Rodriguez Law Firm?

Your Success is Our Success
  • Mission

    We are here to help immigrant families live the American dream.  We do this by offering competitive Fees and Payments Plans designed to help you afford our services.

  • Commitment

    Our commitment to our clients will never waiver.  We strive to always provide our clients with professional services and the best legal solutions available.

  • Honesty

    We understand that clients need to trust their attorney.  We work hard to earn your trust by being transparent and honest with our legal advice and proposed solutions.

  • Integrity

    Our integrity is the key to a successful Attorney-Client relationship.  We are committed to always serving your best interest with integrity and respect.