United States Citizenship
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U.S. Citizenship

There are a number of protections gained by having U.S. citizenship that are not available to permanent residents, even long-term permanent residents.

As a permanent resident, if you are arrested and convicted, even for crimes you may think are minor ones, you could wind up deported (removed) and barred for many years or even forever. Citizens generally cannot be deported unless based upon misrepresentation that occurred in the naturalization process. However, citizens can renounce U.S. citizenship, either by an oath of renunciation before a U.S. consulate or embassy abroad, abroad or by voluntarily applying for citizenship in another country with the intention of giving up U.S. citizenship.

Permanent resident status can be lost through unintentional abandonment. If you live and work abroad for a long time, fail to pay U.S. taxes, own and drive a vehicle that is registered in your name in a foreign country, and/or hold foreign bank accounts, you may lose permanent resident status because you can be deemed to have abandoned it, even if you were not aware of the consequences, but none of these will jeopardize U.S. citizenship.

Citizenship is protected by the U.S. constitution and is very hard to lose without specific legal acts voluntarily done with the intention to relinquish citizenship status, and even these acts may sometimes be reversed if you later change your mind.

Not so with permanent residency. Once lost, you must start over to apply for it.

Citizenship is a wise investment for those who are legitimately entitled to it.

Ways to obtain


A permanent resident with three years of legal permanent residency (based upon a bona fide marriage to a US citizen) or five years (generally applicable to employment based permanent residency) may qualify for naturalization. Qualifying children of naturalizing parents can also apply for naturalization, but those who reach adulthood during the immigration and naturalization process may encounter special difficulties that require legal assistance. Iif there is a reason to suspect the green card was not legitimately obtained or if there was a criminal conviction or other serious matter that arose during the period of permanent residency, applying for citizenship may be inadvisable and can result in deportation (removal) proceedings. If you are concerned that you may encounter complications during the naturalization process, and want legal advice in total confidence, call Messing Law Offices today (520) 512-5432 .


Under current law, anyone born in the United States, even of foreign parents, is automatically a U.S. citizen.


Without meeting any visa requirements, American citizenship can also be obtained on the basis of a U.S. citizen parent who resided in the United States for a legally required period of time before the birth of the child, even for a foreign national who never visited the United States and has no other connection to the country. Because the law defining the required residency of a U.S. citizen parent for citizenship transmission purposes has changed over time, determining entitlement to citizenship in a specific case can be very confusing.This is a task best undertaken by an experienced citizenship attorney. If you were born abroad and one or both of your parents was a U.S. citizen, or additionally one or both of your grandparents was a U.S. citizen and you would like more information,call Messing Law Offices today (520) 512-5432.

View the Video: Immigration Nuggets "U.S. Citizenship" from Messing Law Offices, Arizona Immigration Attorney

Dual Citizenship

U.S. law permits a person who was born abroad to be both a citizen of the United States and the country where he or she was born (dual citizenship) under most circumstances, but not all foreign countries recognized dual citizenship.

At Messing Law Offices, we provide high quality legal services and expertise to families, working men and women, and businesses. If you have a concern in the areas of family based immigration, business based immigration, employment based immigration, or naturalization and you are seeking the help of an experienced immigration lawyer, call Messing Law Offices(520) 512-5432 for professional Arizona immigration attorney assistance.