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The benefits of U.S. citizenship

It's much easier to obtain a passport as a U.S. citizen rather than as a legal resident.

When immigrants have gone through the process of becoming legal residents of the U.S., it’s quite the achievement. It takes a great deal of determination and resolve to satisfy all the requirements. Therefore, once it’s achieved, it’s understandable why so many start devoting all of their attention to finding a job so they can send money to those they love back home.

But it may be in immigrants’ best interest to take their legal residency in the U.S. an additional step by applying for citizenship.

According to immigration lawyers, there are a variety of reasons why going the extra mile for citizenship pays off. One of the biggest ones is the latitude it gives immigrants. For instance, should they want to travel or live abroad for a certain period of time, they’re perfectly free to do that as a citizen. As a legal resident, however, they’re not subject to the same standard. For instance, once legal resident immigrants return to the U.S. after travelling, they have to present a variety of documents that indicate they have a legal right to live in the country, such as by presenting their passport as well as their green card.

Another benefit of citizenship is the legal right to vote in federal and local elections. They can also run for office and be awarded grants that are only offered to U.S. citizens. Permanent residents have no such rights and can be denied from participating in elections or applying for some grants and scholarships.

While immigrants often come to the United States so they can provide for their families who still live in their home country, feelings of homesickness may lead to them to want their spouse or child to move to the U.S. As a citizen, immigrants have the ability to file a petition for their loved ones to come to the U.S. and live there permanently as legal immigrants. The process is considerably easier for citizens compared to residents.

But perhaps the best reason to become a U.S. citizen is the security it provides. As a citizen, immigrants cannot be removed or deported from the country for virtually any reason. The only way this may happen is if it’s discovered that the immigrant falsified statements and/or documents in order to obtain a green card.

These are just a few of the perks that come with U.S. citizenship. For more information on how to apply, click here.

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