Legal permanent residents are eligible to apply for citizenship in two different ways. One way is if you obtained your permanent resident status through a spouse, and you continue to live with that spouse. You can apply for citizenship within three years of obtaining your permanent resident status.
Individuals who obtained their permanent residency status through other means can apply for citizenship after five years.
If you are eligible, you need to show that you have had permanent resident status for at least three to five years. You must have been in the United States for at least half that time, 18 months to 30 months. You cannot have stayed outside of the United States for more than one year and you cannot have been convicted of certain crimes.
You also have to establish good moral character for the five years immediately preceding the application. Certain criminal convictions will bar you from receiving citizenship. Additionally, some immigration violations may prevent your eligibility.
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