The immigration process is quite complicated. You have to meet very specific standards to legally enter the United States, and there are many different stages involved in the process. Most immigrants wait years to become permanent residents, and many never become citizens despite living in the United States for decades.
Those who enter the country with a visa can potentially bring their close family members with them. Spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21 can travel with someone who has a visa if they meet the requirements for entry. Permanent residents can potentially get green cards for their immediate family members, including their spouses and children.
However, if you have other family members still living in your home country, you may need to become a citizen to help them enter the United States. Who can benefit from your naturalization?
Your closest loved ones could become eligible for immigration
Family-based immigration is often the best option people have for legally entering the country. Citizenship expands your family’s immigration options. Your spouse and children are typically the only ones who can benefit from you having a visa or a green card, and your children won’t always be eligible.
You may have older children who are already married that won’t qualify for any immigration programs if you are a permanent resident. Your parents and siblings also do not have any immigration opportunities based on your status. That changes if you become a naturalized citizen.
There are programs that can help both the parents and also the siblings of United States citizens. Those who have older children who are already married could potentially also benefit from citizenship if they want to help those children enter the country.
Naturalization can be challenging but rewarding
The process of becoming a naturalized citizen intimidates many people, in part because it involves an interview. The naturalization interview process typically includes both English and Civics tests. Careful preparation can help those who want to become United States citizens meet all of the necessary requirements and pass the tests.
After naturalizing, you will then have extended family immigration opportunities. Learning more about current immigration programs and naturalized citizenship can help you determine the right steps to take based on your family circumstances.