Application for Naturalization (2023)

Naturalization is the process to become a U.S. citizen if you were born outside of the United States. If you meet certain requirements, you may become a U.S. citizen either at birth or after birth. Use this form to apply for U.S. citizenship.Check your eligibility.

File Online

Application for Naturalization (1)

Check Naturalization Eligibility

In the video below, you can learn how to use your online account to check your eligibility for naturalization, complete the online form, upload evidence, and pay your fee. You’ll also learn how to track and manage your case after filing. To review specific chapters, please see ourHow to File Your Application for Naturalization Online Videopage.

What This Form Can Help You Do

Become a U.S. Citizen Through Naturalization

(Video) Apply for Citizenship Online: How to File Your Application for Naturalization Online

Form Details

Forms and Document Downloads

Form N-400: Use with Adobe Reader (PDF, 1 MB)

Instructions for Form N-400 (PDF, 380.34 KB)

Document Checklist, Current Fees, Naturalization Eligibility Worksheet (PDF, 495.23 KB)

Naturalization Requirements Information (PDF, 627.04 KB)

(Video) N-400 Application For Naturalization | How To File Online

Edition Date

09/17/19. E. We will also accept the 09/17/19 edition. You can find the edition date at the bottom of the page on the form and instructions.

Dates are listed in mm/dd/yy format.

If you complete and print this form to mail it in, make sure that the form edition date and page numbers are visible at the bottom of all pages and that all pages are from the same edition of the form. If any of the form’s pages are missing or are from a different edition of the form, we may reject your form.

If you need help downloading and printing forms, read our instructions.

Where to File

You generally have two options for filing your Form N-400 with USCIS:

  • Online;or
  • By mail (paper).

Filing Your Form N-400 Online

You must create a USCIS online account tofile your Form N-400 online. Having an online account will also allow you to:

  • Pay your filing fee online;
  • Check the status of your case;
  • Receive notifications and case updates;
  • View personalized case completion date estimates;
  • Respond to requests for evidence; and
  • Manage your contact information, including updating your address.

Attorneys and Accredited Representatives: You can also create an online account, which will allow you to manage all of your clients’ applications in one place.

Filing Your Form N-400 by Mail

If you submit Form N-400 on paper, we will mail you a USCIS Account Acceptance Notice with instructions on how to create an online account to track and manage your case. We will process your application even if you do not create an online account, but we encourage you to create and access your online account. We will continue to mail you copies of notifications about your case. Please check our Direct Filing Addresses for Form N-400 page for information on where to mail your application. Applications that are not submitted to the appropriate direct filing address may experience processing delays.

When to File

(Video) 30 MOST ASKED N400 VOCABULARY | 2023 N-400 Naturalization Interview

You may file Form N-400, Application for Naturalization, 90 calendar days before you complete your continuous residence requirement if your eligibility for naturalization is based upon being a:

  • Permanent resident for at least 5 years; or
  • Permanent resident for at least 3 years if you are married to a US citizen.

Please see our USCIS Early Filing Calculator page for additional information.

Filing Fee


(Add the $85 biometric fee for a total of $725, where applicable. See exceptions below.)

If you file your Form N-400 online, you may pay your fee online.

If you file your Form N-400 by mail (paper), you may pay the fee with a money order, personal check, cashier’s check or payby credit card usingForm G-1450, Authorization for Credit Card Transactions. If you pay by check, you must make your check payable to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

When you send a payment, you agree to pay for a government service. Filing and biometric service fees are final and non-refundable, regardless of any action we take on your application, petition, or request, or if you withdraw your request.Use our Fee Calculator to help determine your fee.

Pay each filing fee separately. We are transitioning to electronically processing immigration benefit requests, which requires us to use multiple systems to process your package. Because of this, you must pay each filing fee separately for any form you submit. We may reject your entire package if you submit a single, combined payment for multiple forms.


  • Applicants 75 years of age or older do not need to pay a biometric fee. They only need to pay the $640 filing fee.
  • No filing fee or biometric services fee is required for military applicants filing under section 328 or 329 of the INA.

Checklist of Required Initial Evidence (for informational purposes only)

Please do not submit this checklist with your Form N-400. It is an optional tool to use as you prepare your form, but does not replace statutory, regulatory, and form instruction requirements. We recommend that you review these requirements before completing and submitting your form. Do not send original documents unless specifically requested in the form instructions or applicable regulations.

If you submit any documents (copies or original documents, if requested) in a foreign language, you must include a full English translation along with a certification from the translator verifying that the translation is complete and accurate, and that the translator is competent to translate from the foreign language to English.

Did you provide the following?

  • A copy of your Permanent Resident Card (commonly called a Green Card);
  • A copy of your marriage certificate (if applicable);
  • Form N-426, Request for Certification of Military or Naval Service (if you are applying for naturalization based on military service);
  • DD Form 214, NGB Form 22, or discharge orders (if applying for naturalization based on military service and are separated from service);
  • A copy of your official military orders (if you are applying for naturalization based on military service and are currently serving);
  • Evidence of your citizen spouse’s employment abroad (if applying under INA 319(b)); and
  • Two passport-style photographs (if you reside outside the United States).

Form Filing Tips

(Video) 2023 US Citizenship Interview & Test ||N-400|| Naturalization Interview [applicant's experience]

Filing Tips:Go to ourTips for Filing Forms by Mailpage for information on how to help ensure we will accept your application.

Don’t forget to sign your form.We will reject any unsigned form.

Special Instructions

  • ReadA Guide to Naturalization(Form M-476) carefully before filing this form. The Form N-400 Instructions often refer to information in the guide, and it provides important information about U.S. citizenship eligibility requirements and processing procedures.
  • Biometrics: Applicants who file Form N-400 must generally submit biometrics unless the requirement is waived. An applicant who is required to appear at an Application Support Center (ASC) to submit biometrics will receive a notice of their scheduled appointment. If we determine you are eligible for naturalization, we may use the photograph taken at the ASC on your Certificate of Naturalization. Therefore, we recommend that on the day of your ASC appointment, you dress in clothing that is acceptable for display on your Certificate of Naturalization. We will not reject a photograph based solely upon your desire to modify the photograph shown on your certificate.
  • Photographs: Based on processing needs, you may need to submit physical passport photographs after you have already filed your Form N-400. We will send you a request for physical photographs with instructions on how to submit them.
  • Attorney or accredited representative: You may be represented, at no expense to the U.S. government, by an attorney or other duly authorized or accreditedrepresentative.Your representative must submit Form G-28, Notice of Entry or Appearance as Attorney or Accredited Representative, with your Form N-400. They may also submit Form G-28 at the time of your interview.
  • Lost or Expiring Permanent Resident Card (Green Card): Effective Dec. 12, 2022, after you properly file Form N-400, you will receive a Form N-400 receipt notice that automatically extends your Green Card for 2 years from the “Card Expires” date on your Green Card. This notice will serve as proof that your Green Card, which is evidence of your lawful permanent resident status, has been extended. The notice should be presented together with your Green Card. If you lose your Green Card, you generally must still file Form I-90 even if you have applied for naturalization. If you have been issued a Form N-400 receipt notice that automatically extends the validity of your Green Card, but your notice has been destroyed or lost, then you generally must file Form I-90 to renew your expiring Green Card.

Biometrics for Service Members

We will review your application and conduct required background and security checks, which include you providing us with your fingerprints. This can be done in one of the following ways:

  • If you were fingerprinted for a previous immigration application, we will use these fingerprints, if available.
  • If you are stationed outside the United States, you may submit two properly completed FD-258 fingerprint cards and two passport-style photos taken by the military police or officials with the Department of Homeland Security at aU.S. Embassy or U.S. Consulate.
  • You may also submit your fingerprints at an Application Support Center (ASC) before or after you file your Form N-400. Be sure to include your A-Number and show your unexpired military ID card or Delayed Entry Program ID card.

If you have case specific questions, you can contact theMilitary Help Lineat 877-CIS-4MIL (877-247-4645,TTY: 800-877-8339)

E-Notification: If you want to receive an email and/or text message when we accept your form at a USCIS lockbox, complete Form G-1145, E-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance, and clip it to the first page of your application.

Related Links

Learn About Citizenship

  • Citizenship Resource Center
  • Citizenship and Naturalization
  • How Do I Apply for Citizenship? (PDF, 2.21 MB)
  • A Guide to Naturalization

Citizenship Tools and Resources

File Online

  • How to Create a USCIS Online Account
  • Tips for Filing Forms Online
  • Online Filing for Attorneys and Accredited Representatives

Paying with a Credit Card

  • Pay Your N-400 Application Fee with Your Credit Card
  • Form G-1450, Authorization for Credit Card Transactions

Prepare for the Interview and Test

  • The Naturalization Interview and Test
  • Study for the Test
  • Check for Test Updates
  • Citizenship Multilingual Resources

Filing Tips and Guidance

Policy and Guidance

  • USCIS Policy Manual, Volume 12, Citizenship and Naturalization
  • Guidance: Group Processing Events

    Last Reviewed/Updated:

    (Video) How to apply for citizenship online step by step in 2021 (USCIS Form N400)


    How do I apply for naturalization online? ›

    Once you've signed in to your USCIS online account, you can start your naturalization application. To start, click on “file a form online”. Select “Application for Naturalization (N400)” and click on “Start Form”. You will encounter the following steps and questions as you progress through your online application.

    What are the 5 requirements for naturalization? ›

    Be able to read, write, and speak basic English; Demonstrate good moral character; Demonstrate a knowledge and understanding of U.S. history and government; Demonstrate a loyalty to the principles of the U.S. Constitution; and.

    What is application for naturalization? ›

    Form N-400, Application for Naturalization, is an application to become a naturalized U.S. citizen. If your biological or legal adoptive mother or father is a U.S. citizen by birth, or was naturalized before you reached your 18th birthday, you may already be a U.S. citizen.

    How long does it take to process naturalization application? ›

    Citizenship Processing Time

    The processing time for naturalization (citizenship) averages 9 months according to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). During this time, as the government works to process the Application for Naturalization, applicants must complete several steps before becoming citizens.

    What documents do I need for U.S. naturalization? ›

    Bring the following documents to the appointment:
    • Form I-551, Permanent Resident Card;
    • Appointment notice; and.
    • A second form of identification (driver's license, passport, or state identification card). Your second form of identification must have your photograph on it.

    Is it better to apply for citizenship online or by mail? ›

    Filing a form online is better than mailing a paper form because you can: Enter your information using a phone, tablet, or computer; Avoid common mistakes (for example, you won't be able to submit without signing);

    Can I stay on green card forever? ›

    A green card provides many advantages, primarily that it allows the green card holder to permanently live and work in the United States, and after a number of years, become a U.S. citizen.

    How long can a green card holder apply for citizenship? ›

    To become a U.S. citizen, you must: Have had a Permanent Resident (Green) Card for at least five years, or for at least three years if you're filing as the spouse of a U.S. citizen.

    What are the top 3 states for naturalization? ›

    The Newark (3.8% of all naturalizations), Dallas (3.5%), Los Angeles (3.4%), Houston (3.1%), and New York (3.1%) field offices naturalized the largest number of new citizens in FY 2021.
    Fiscal Year 2021 Naturalization Statistics. 1.
    State of residenceFY 2021
    New York89,200
    New Jersey39,000
    9 more rows
    Sep 21, 2022

    What happens after you apply for naturalization? ›

    If USCIS approves your application for naturalization, you must attend a ceremony and take the Oath of Allegiance to the United States. USCIS will notify you by mail of the time and date of your ceremony. The notice USCIS sends you is called the “Notice of Naturalization Oath Ceremony” (Form N-445).

    Is application for naturalization the same as citizenship? ›

    Lawful U.S. citizenship can be granted through the naturalization process or acquisition of citizenship. The difference is that acquisition is given because of the person's relationship to U.S. citizens, whereas naturalization requires a set of requirements for adults.

    Can I apply for naturalization myself? ›

    You can file USCIS forms yourself, including Form N-400, Application for Naturalization, which can be submitted online. However, some people choose to seek assistance from a lawyer or Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR)-accredited representative.

    How long is the naturalization interview? ›

    A typical citizenship interview lasts about 20 minutes, but the exact timeframe varies by applicant.

    Is the naturalization process easy? ›

    It is hard because of the long processing times, the financial and personal costs involved, and the fact that most immigrants do not have a direct relative that is a citizen of the United States. The requirements of U.S. citizenship are also complex and may not be understandable to some immigrants.

    Do you need to take a test for naturalization? ›

    As part of the naturalization process, applicants for U.S. citizenship must pass a two-part naturalization test. The first component is an English test that assesses the applicant's ability to read, write, and speak in the language.

    What should I wear to my naturalization interview? ›

    It's not necessary to dress formally for your U.S. citizenship interview and test. You may dress comfortably but look professional. "Business casual" is a good rule of thumb. Avoid wearing jeans, shorts and t-shirts.

    Can I have a U.S. passport without naturalization certificate? ›

    If you have received your new passport, but not your supporting documents, know that documents are mailed back separately and it can take up to a month or more to receive them back. If you wish to follow-up, call 1-877-487-2778.

    What is the fastest way to get U.S. citizenship? ›

    The fastest way to become a U.S. citizen is to be born in the United States. How long do you have to live in the US to become a citizen? You may qualify for naturalization and become a U.S. citizen if you have been a permanent resident for at least 5 years. 3 years in case you are married to a U.S. citizen.

    How can I speed up my U.S. citizenship process? ›

    You can generally request expedited processing by calling the USCIS Contact Center at 800-375-5283 (TTY 800-767-1833) or by asking Emma after you have obtained a receipt notice. (You can access Emma by clicking on the Ask Emma icon on the top right of this page).

    Which state is best to apply for citizenship? ›

    The top 3 best overall metro areas for immigrants to become U.S. citizens are Cleveland, Ohio; Riverside, California; and Louisville, Kentucky. The worst 3 metro areas for immigrants to become U.S. citizens are all in Texas: Austin, Houston, and Dallas.

    What is the 6 month rule for US green card? ›

    An absence of more than 6 months (more than 180 days) but less than 1 year (less than 365 days) during the period for which continuous residence is required (also called “the statutory period”) is presumed to break the continuity of such residence.

    Can I stay 1 year outside US with green card? ›

    Yes, you can travel abroad as a green card holder — that's one of the many benefits of being a permanent resident. However, your trip must be temporary and you cannot remain outside the United States for more than 1 year.

    What is the six month rule for green card? ›

    As a general rule, permanent residents should avoid any trips abroad of 6 months or longer. If you travel for over 6 months (but less than a year) at one time, USCIS will automatically presume that you've broken your continuous residence requirement for the purposes of naturalization.

    What is the 3 year rule for citizenship? ›

    3 Years of Continuous Residence. The spouse of a U.S. citizen residing in the United States must have continuously resided in the United States as an LPR for at least 3 years immediately preceding the date of the filing the application and up to the time of the Oath of Allegiance.

    Is it better to renew green card or apply for citizenship? ›

    Green cards don't offer as much protection as citizenship does, so you may want to consider applying for citizenship instead of renewing your permanent residency status. Applying for U.S. citizenship isn't as difficult as it seems, but it can be if you're completely unprepared and haven't studied for the exam.

    What is the 4 year 1 day rule for U.S. citizenship? ›

    The 4 year 1 day rule mostly works as follows. Once you've broken continuous residency, a new period will begin to run on the first day you return to the U.S. Form the day you must stay in the U.S. for a minimum of 4 years and 1 day before you can apply for naturalization again.

    How much does naturalization cost? ›

    $640. (Add the $85 biometric fee for a total of $725, where applicable. See exceptions below.) If you file your Form N-400 online, you may pay your fee online.

    How many Americans fail the citizenship test? ›

    The diagram below shows that 96.1% of all applicants pass the naturalization test. In fiscal year 2021, almost 90% passed it during the initial interview, and another 6% of all applicants passed during a re-exam.

    Which state is easiest to get green card? ›

    What Are the Most Immigrant Friendly States in the USA?
    • 8 — Washington.
    • 7 — District of Columbia.
    • 6 — Georgia.
    • 5 — Maryland.
    • 4 — New Jersey.
    • 3 — New York.
    • 2 — Illinois.
    • 1 — California.

    Do I need to update my SSN after naturalization? ›

    You will need to visit Social Security so they can update your Social Security record. Wait at least 10 days after your ceremony before doing so and be prepared to show them your Certificate of Naturalization or your U.S. passport.

    How long is the processing time for N 400? ›

    The current average processing time for Form N-400 is around 6-24 months. Generally, however, the speed of processing depends on the USCIS field office handling the application, and some applicants can get a head start on the process (see “Filing Early” below).

    Can a lawyer speed up citizenship process? ›

    The immigration process can be intimidating and take a long time, but hiring an immigration attorney to support you with your case can speed up the process and help you meet your goals.

    What questions do they ask at naturalization interview? ›

    Below are some examples of questions USCIS may ask during your naturalization interview.
    Your Employment and Education History
    • Where do you work?
    • What is your job?
    • Where else have you worked in the past five (or three) years? ...
    • Where did you last attend school?
    Nov 1, 2022

    What happens if you don't pass the naturalization interview? ›

    If an applicant fails any portion of the English test, the civics test, or all tests during the initial naturalization examination, USCIS reschedules the applicant to appear for a second examination between 60 and 90 days after the initial examination.

    What are the 7 steps of the naturalization process? ›

    • Requirements for Naturalization. ...
    • Download Application and Collect Documents Needed. ...
    • Submit the Form. ...
    • Schedule an appointment for fingerprints. ...
    • Complete the interview. ...
    • Receive a decision. ...
    • Taking the Oath of Allegiance.

    How fast can I get U.S. passport after naturalization? ›

    You will receive your passport in about four to six weeks; the documents you submitted with your application will be returned to you within two weeks of receiving your passport. If you don't get your Certificate of Naturalization back, immediately contact the National Passport Information Center to report it.

    Can I file N-400 online or paper? ›

    Yes, you may file your N-400 online unless you are applying from abroad or are applying for a fee reduction or waiver, in which case you must use the paper Form N-400 and file by mail.

    How do I start the naturalization process? ›

    What to do:
    1. Complete the questionnaire on Form N-445, Notice of Naturalization Oath Ceremony.
    2. Report for your naturalization ceremony and check in with USCIS. ...
    3. Turn in your Permanent Resident Card (Green Card).
    4. Take the Oath of Allegiance to become a U.S. citizen.
    Aug 11, 2022

    How much does it cost to apply for U.S. naturalization? ›

    How Much to Pay
    Naturalization Fees
    Typical applicantNo special circumstances$725
    With fee reduction$405
    With fee waiver$0
    Applicant aged 75 or olderNo special circumstances$640
    4 more rows

    Can I apply for naturalization by myself? ›

    You can file USCIS forms yourself, including Form N-400, Application for Naturalization, which can be submitted online. However, some people choose to seek assistance from a lawyer or Executive Office for Immigration Review (EOIR)-accredited representative.

    What documents are needed for N-400 application? ›

    7 Documents To Submit With Your N-400 Application for Naturalization
    • Proof of Green Card Holder (Permanent Resident) Status. ...
    • Your Application Fee Payment or a Fee Reduction or Fee Wavier Application. ...
    • Proof of Your Current Marital Status. ...
    • Proof of Your Identity. ...
    • Proof of Your Military Service.
    Oct 2, 2022

    How much does the N-400 form cost? ›

    $640. (Add the $85 biometric fee for a total of $725, where applicable. See exceptions below.) If you file your Form N-400 online, you may pay your fee online.

    Where should I send my N-400 application? ›

    Please refer to the following charts for the filing location to send your completed Form N-400 and supporting documentation. Nebraska Service Center, P.O. Box 87426, Lincoln, NE 68501-7426. Courier and Express Mail Deliveries: Nebraska Service Center, 850 S. Street, Lincoln, NE 68508.

    Can I keep my green card after naturalization? ›

    You must return your Permanent Resident Card to USCIS when you check in for your oath ceremony. You will no longer need your Permanent Resident Card because you will get your Certificate of Naturalization at the ceremony.

    Is it hard to get U.S. naturalization? ›

    It is hard because of the long processing times, the financial and personal costs involved, and the fact that most immigrants do not have a direct relative that is a citizen of the United States. The requirements of U.S. citizenship are also complex and may not be understandable to some immigrants.

    What is the easiest way to get U.S. citizenship? ›

    Having said that, the four main ways to become a U.S. citizen are: through parents, marriage, the military, or naturalization.

    Can I get my passport without my naturalization certificate? ›

    If you don't submit a photocopy or a second certified copy of your citizenship evidence, your passport processing could be delayed. You cannot submit digital evidence of U.S. citizenship (e.g. electronic or mobile birth certificate) when applying for a U.S. passport.


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