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American Citizenship for Military Personnel

If you are a member of the United States Armed Forces and want to become an American citizen, you may be eligible to apply under special provisions provided under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Normally, US Armed Forces means service in Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, Coast Guard, certain Reserve Components of the National Guard or Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve.

You have to meet certain requirements and qualifications in order for you to become a US citizen. You should

  • have good moral character
  • have knowledge of the English language
  • have knowledge of US government and history (civics)
  • be willing to take an oath of allegiance to the US Constitution

However, as a member of the military there are some eligibility requirements that you may be exempted from, such as the required residency and physical presence in the US.

Section 328, INA applies to all members currently serving in the US Armed Forces or those who have already been discharged from service.

You may qualify if you:

  • served honorably for a total of one or more years.
  • are a lawful permanent resident (LPR).
  • will be filing your citizenship form while still in service or within six months of being discharged.

Section 329, INA applies to members of the US Armed Forces who currently serve or have served in active-duty during the authorized periods of conflict as mentioned in the INA (WWI; September 1, 1939-December 31, 1946; June 25, 1950-July 1, 1955 and February 28, 1961-October 5, 1978) or additional period designated by the President in an Executive Order.

You may qualify if you:

  • served in the US Armed Forces honorably during an authorized period of conflict.
  • after enlistment, were lawfully admitted as a permanent resident of the US (LPR), OR at the time of enlistment, re-enlistment or induction, were physically present in the US or a qualifying territory.

The President recently signed an Executive Order that identifies September 11, 2001 and after as an authorized period of conflict.

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