Green Card Holders do not Want to Naturalize, but Why?

Many Green Card holders in America choose to remain in the country as permanent residents though they are eligible for U.S. citizenship. Many say that they are not interested in becoming U.S. citizens. At the same time, there are several undocumented immigrants living in the country who now want the country to grant them U.S. citizenship.

According to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, millions of Green Card holders are eligible for naturalization but are not interested in applying for it. There are a variety of reasons why they do not want to become U.S. citizens.

Permanent residents, to apply for naturalization, must meet a few residency requirements. They need to know English and need to know the country’s history in order to pass the citizenship test and interview. They must establish that they can read, write and speak English. Immigrants who are not good at English do not apply for naturalization, just because they are not good at English. However, there are options for people to not take the test if they meet some requirements, and also the test is not as difficult as it seems. If adequate preparation is done during the long waiting times anyone can pass the test.

The other reason why many choose to renew their Green Cards and remain as permanent residents is the naturalization application filing fee. Many are unable to afford this fee. The fee is too high for many but they are unaware of the waivers that are available to the ones who are unable to afford the form filing fee.

Some countries are against dual citizenship. Citizens of such countries will have renounced the actual citizenship they are holding to obtain U.S. citizenship, which is a difficult choice for many.

Some are not interested in becoming citizens of the United States though they possess good language skills and meet all the other naturalization requirements. They simply do not want to obtain citizenship.

Permanent residents are granted almost all the rights that are granted to U.S. citizens, except the right to vote and other benefits/rights. Permanent residents cannot take part in civic life and they cannot stay in foreign countries for a long time. They will lose their status in the country if they make a foreign country their home.

They are ineligible for certain jobs that are meant only for U.S. citizens. Permanent residents will be stripped of their status and deported if they violate U.S. immigration laws. However, permanent residents who are not willing to become U.S. citizens are not concerned about the above limitations.