Eligibility and Testing
N-400 is an application for United States Citizenship (Naturalization). For information on the naturalization process and eligibility requirements, please read the Naturalization Guide.
To use this form one must be at least 18 years of age and meet the following requirements:
- A Lawful Permanent Resident for at least 5 years;
- A Lawful Permanent Resident for at least 3 years and has been married to and living with the same U.S. citizen for the last 3 years, and/or the spouse has been a U.S. citizen for the last 3 years;
- A person who has served in the U.S. Armed Forces and a Lawful Permanent Resident with at least 3 years of U.S. Armed Forces service and be either on active duty or filing within 6 months of honorable discharge and/or served during a period of recognized hostilities and enlisted or reenlisted in the United States (you do not need to be a Lawful Permanent Resident);
- A member of one of several other groups who are eligible to apply for naturalization (such as persons who are nationals but not citizens of the United States). For more information about these groups, please read the Naturalization Guide.
In certain cases, a person who was born outside of the United States to U.S. citizen parents is already a citizen and does not need to apply for Naturalization. Other permanent residents under 18 years of age may be eligible for U.S. citizenship if their U.S. citizen parent or parents file a Form N-600 application in their behalf.
You may apply for naturalization when you meet all the requirements to become a U.S. citizen. The section of the Naturalization Guide called “Who is Eligible for Naturalization” and the Eligibility Worksheet found in the back of the Naturalization Guide are tools to help you determine whether you are eligible to apply for naturalization. You should complete the Worksheet before filling out the N-400 application.
If you are applying based on 5 years as a Lawful Permanent Resident or based on 3 years as a Lawful Permanent Resident married to a U.S. citizen, you may apply for naturalization up to 90 days before you meet the “continuous residence” requirement. You must meet all other requirements at the time that you file your application with us.
Certain applicants have different English and civics testing requirements based on their age and length of lawful permanent residence at the time of filing. If you are over 50 years of age and have lived in the United States as a lawful permanent resident for periods totaling at least 20 years or if you are over 55 years of age and have lived in the United States as a lawful permanent resident for periods totaling at least 15 years, you do not have to take the English test but you do have to take the civics test in the language of your choice.
If you are over 65 years of age and have lived in the United States as a lawful permanent resident for periods totaling at least 20 years, you do not have to take the English test but you do have to take a simpler version of the civics test in the language of your choice.