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Understanding The N-400 Denial In The United States

Understanding The N-400 Denial In The United States

Becoming an American citizen may be the greatest privilege any immigrant can experience. It is often the culmination of years of hard work and countless miles of travel. In the last three years, more than two and a half million immigrants have become American citizens.

On the other hand, in the same time frame, more than 240,000 American citizens received a denial of their N-400 applications for citizenship. For most immigrants, the goal is to become a US citizen eventually. Not only is this a great achievement, but becoming a naturalized citizen also offers many important benefits, including the ability to vote and run for political office.

Furthermore, a naturalized citizen cannot be removed from the US. Applying for citizenship is always exciting for anyone. USCIS often files form N-400 to carry out the naturalization process. Citizenship is one of the most intensive immigration programs. It requires a lot of effort and attention to detail.

Only those with valid green cards can begin the naturalization process. However, the process can also be lengthy and complex. If you are a legal resident filing an N-400 application for naturalization, you must meet several requirements; otherwise, you might receive a denial of your N-400 application.

When you file form N-400, you are asking USCIS to review your entire case file again. There are potential risks involved. The USCIS may find something they didn’t notice in your case file. Knowing where other applicants have gone wrong is worth knowing. It is a good idea to talk to an immigration lawyer before filing form N-400.

Some applicants receive a denial of their N-400 application and are perplexed as to why they were denied citizenship. If you are among the applicants curious about why they were denied, read on for some of the most common citizenship denial reasons and what to do next.

What is the N-400?

N-400 is a form used for “naturalization application.” The N-400 application is the final step for LPRs who are ready to apply for US citizenship after meeting all other eligibility requirements. The N-400 candidates must be 18 years old or older, and green card holders must have resided in the US for at least 5 years (3 years if married to a US citizen).

The N-400 candidates may be subject to additional requirements if they are qualified for eligible military service.

Common reasons for denial of N-400 citizenship application

The US citizenship application process can be overwhelming and challenging for many applicants. The United States has high standards for citizenship applications, and it can be challenging to meet them. It can be frustrating to receive a denial of the N-400 application when you make a mistake or if you don’t understand the process.

You may receive a denial of the N-400 citizenship application for many reasons. Some are obvious, while others are more mysterious. Even the tiniest detail can cause the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to revoke your citizenship. Here are some of the most common reasons why you might be denied citizenship.

1. Criminal history.

The most common reason an N-400 application is denied is a prior criminal history. The USCIS review process examines your criminal record before deciding whether to accept or deny your application. Some of the most serious crimes can lead to a court order for removal from the US after an applicant has applied for citizenship.

USCIS conducts your background check through a biometric service. During the background check process, USCIS will look at your criminal history. If you have been convicted of a murder or an aggravated felony, it is likely that your naturalization will be permanently denied.

On the other hand, minor offenses can have serious repercussions and may result in your naturalization being denied. Sometimes, you may need to wait a certain period before you can reapply for citizenship. Time is of the essence during the naturalization process. USCIS considers the last five years from your initial naturalization application.

If you have been involved in a law enforcement incident in the last five years, even in another nation, it is a good idea to talk with your immigration lawyer to sort through the issues and figure out how to move forward with your application.

2. Inaccurate information/fraud.

You will be asked several questions on your N-400 citizenship application form. For example, you will be asked, “What is your legal name?” You will need to spell your legal name correctly and provide correct answers to other questions on your citizenship application form.

Your US citizenship application form will ask you many questions, and you must provide accurate answers to other questions. The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) may reject your application if it finds that a certain piece of information is incorrect. The error can be unintentional or intentional.

Every detail on your N-400 form must be accurate and true. If you make an error, the USCIS will consider it fraud and cite it as a reason for denying your N-400 citizenship application. Talk to your immigration lawyer if you are not sure about a specific question or piece of information you must provide.

You must show the USCIS that you researched the obscure details you are unsure of. If you don’t know about a certain travel history, you must prove that you tried to find it. If you have incorrect information on your application, you could be considered a liar, not a person of good character.

If you have incorrect information, you could be seen as trying to fake your identity to get citizenship quickly. If there has been fraud with your previous green card, the USCIS will find that too. If you have questions about your application, a previous green card, or what you need to include on your N-400, talk to an immigration lawyer.

3. Unable to pass the citizenship tests and interview.

Getting ready for your interview is an important part of your naturalization process. When you meet face-to-face with a USCIS examiner for your interview, you will take a civics exam and a spoken interview. If you don’t pass the civics exam or interview the first time around, you may be able to retake it or redo the interview within 60 – 90 days.

If you fail a second time, you may be denied citizenship. It is in everyone’s best interest to prepare for your interview and/or exam. Your immigration lawyer can help you prepare and feel ready for your meeting.

4. Failure to meet the residency requirement.

If you are not in the US at the right time, you may receive a denial of your N-400 citizenship application. You must be a permanent resident before you can apply for naturalization. This means you must have resided in the US for at least five years in the last five years.

The length of time varies depending on the circumstances of your stay. No matter your visa, you should never travel for six months outside of the United States.

5. Financial issues.

Millions of Americans—including permanent residents—are facing foreclosure, bankruptcy and debt. The good news is that debt doesn’t stop you from naturalizing. However, there are several financial issues that can impact your character test. They can hold you back from naturalizing.

Failing to pay taxes is one of the most common reasons for denying a N-400 application. If you allow USCIS to find this issue, you risk being denied citizenship. Contact an immigration lawyer and tax adviser who can help you create a plan to pay your taxes and show USCIS that you are rectifying the issue.

By doing this, most individuals can proceed with their naturalization and avoid a denial of their N-400 application. Another common problem N-400 applicants face is the “willful non-support of dependents.” If an N-400 naturalization applicant has a minor child or children not living with the applicant, you must prove that adequate financial support is being provided.

If you have a court order for support, you must prove that you follow it. Failure to make child support payments on time could result in a denial of your N-400 application.

6. Not registering for selective service.

The reason for this is pretty simple. If you are a male legal permanent resident who is 18 years or older when you get a green card, you will need to register for selective service upon receiving a green card. If you are a minor child, you will have 30 days after you turn 18 to register.

Women and legal permanent residents who are at least 26 years old when they receive their green card don’t need to register at any point. If you were required to register and didn’t, USCIS can deny your citizenship application. It would be best to assume that USCIS agents would look at your registration when reviewing your case.

One requirement for naturalization is to demonstrate good moral character. Your petition may be rejected if you don’t demonstrate that you are prepared to defend the United States in a crisis.

What to do after a denial of the N-400 citizenship application?

For many, the dream of becoming an American citizen is exciting and long-lasting. One of the most important steps in this journey is filing the N-400 form with USCIS. However, there are times when your application may be rejected, so it is important to know what happens next. Here are some things you should do:

1. Know the reason for the denial.

The USCIS will typically explain the reason for denying your N-400 application. The most common reasons are that you didn’t pass the English language or civics test at your interview, you lacked the ‘good character’ test, or you did not meet certain eligibility criteria. This is why it is important to carefully review any attached USCIS documents and contact an experienced immigration lawyer if you need more information.

2. Consider available options.

If you are denied US citizenship, it doesn’t have to be the end of your journey. You can appeal the decision, file a motion for reconsideration, or reopen your case. An N-336 appeal is the first step in the appeal process. The N-336 is an application for a hearing. The hearing is when another immigration officer reviews your application.

Another option is filing a motion. The motion is when you file a motion to reconsider the original decision. You can file a ‘motion to reopen,’ submitting new evidence not considered when the initial decision was made. You can also file a motion for reconsideration, where you present new evidence that rebuts the initial decision based on facts and case law.

3. Hire an immigration lawyer.

No matter what you decide to do, working with an experienced immigration lawyer will give you proper advice and guidance. They can help you develop an effective strategy and ensure that your paperwork is complete, accurate, and submitted in a timely manner.

Get help!

Do you have any problems with your N-400 application? Or do you want a hassle-free application? If so, then it is advisable to get the assistance of a skilled immigration lawyer. We have a team of experienced immigration lawyers at Gehi and Associates who can assist you in getting your application approved quicker and with a greater likelihood of success.

Our immigration lawyers will accompany you when you meet with immigration authorities or judges. We will professionally examine your documents to ensure you don’t make any errors or omits that can be considered fraud. Get in touch with us today!

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