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How Much Does it Cost to Become a U.S. Citizen?

Become a U.S. Citizen

With the immigration department occasionally working to send people back to their home country even if they are legal citizens, many families have been broken. The workforce also suffers because so many businesses need help from workers who want to work. The easiest solution is to choose to become a citizen of the United States. However, some people may fear the cost of doing it is unreasonable. If you live in Marietta, Georgia, we can help you discover how much it costs to become a U.S. citizen and help you get the process started to protect you and your family from immigration laws.

The Cost of Becoming a U.S. Citizen Explained

To take care of your paperwork, you can expect to pay $725 through U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. That amount covers a filing fee of $640 and a biometrics fee of $85. Biometrics fees cover things like fingerprints, photographs, and other items used to uniquely verify your identity. You can file and pay these fees when you fill out Form N-400 and pay fees with a credit or debit card. You can also print and mail your Form N-400 and pay by personal check, money orders, or a cashier’s check.

There are some exceptions to the fees:

  • If you’re 75 or older, you will not need to pay the biometrics fee of $85
  • The fee will be waived if have been or currently are in military service and are filing under sections 328 or 329

If neither of these circumstances applies to your situation, you may still apply for a reduced fee or waiver.

A fee reduction or fee waiver is often based on your current financial situation, including your household income. However, this may also not be as simple as it sounds since you must establish the totals on your location.

If you are a single person, you must fall within 150%-200% of federal poverty guidelines and make less than $19,410 or $25,520. In some situations, your reduction could mean you only spend $320.

You should note that all the money you provide while going through the application process is non-refundable. If you are not approved, the U.S. government will not return the fees to you.

What Information is Needed to Apply for U.S. Citizenship?

According to the USCIS website, you must be able to provide certain information along with your application.

This includes copies of:

  • Your permanent resident card
  • Marriage certificate (if applicable)
  • Your Form N-426 or D.D. Form 214 and official military orders (if applicable and hoping for naturalization based on military duty)
  • Proof of a spouse’s employment abroad if trying to qualify through the 319(b)
  • Two passport-style photographs (only needed if you currently live outside the U.S.)

A certified translator must fully translate any documents submitted in a foreign language into English. The translator must also verify its accuracy.

Do You Need a Lawyer to Represent You?

You may file your completed government forms directly, but this isn’t always the most effective way to handle it. No matter how you handle it, the naturalization process can be long and daunting, but a lawyer may make it possible for things to move along more smoothly by eliminating potential errors.

A solid immigration lawyer can help you:

  • Discover which petition you should file to ensure it’s done right the first time
  • Simplify completing your petition
  • Stay on top of your petition’s status
  • Stay fully compliant once you’re approved for citizenship
  • Help provide the resources you need to prepare for the exams
  • Translate or understand the meaning of complicated terms

However, even when hiring a lawyer, you must still be willing to tackle some legwork yourself.

Some examples of things you must do include:

  • Provide all necessary documents or copies of your case
  • Show up at the USCIS office for fingerprinting and citizenship interviews
  • Learn basic U.S. history on your own (your attorney cannot assist you with this or help you answer questions)

In short, hiring a lawyer can take much of the pressure off you while trying to gain U.S. citizenship.

They cannot remove all the stress or the burden from your shoulders, but they can attempt to because they know the laws and what it will take to become a U.S. citizen.

Why Call on Us for Help?

Our office is in Marietta, Georgia, but we can help anyone within the country become a citizen of the United States. You can speak both English and Spanish with our services since all our staff is bilingual. We can explain the process thoroughly to ensure that there’s no confusion, submit your forms, and much more. No matter what you need from us on this journey, we are here to help you. Contact us today to get started.