Citizenship Through Parents

Citizenship through parents occurs at the time of birth, or in cases of migrate families, when the parents after becoming a U.S citizen apply to provide the citizenship for their children, who may or may not be present in the United States at the time

In order to apply for U.S citizenship for your children (young or adult), at least one parent has to be a U.S citizen

Blood related Children or Children of U.S citizens residing in the United States

A child is automatically granted the U.S citizenship having the following conditions under section 320 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), as amended by the Child Citizenship Act (CCA):

  • One of the Parents must be a U.S citizen, either by Birth or Naturlization
  • The child must be under the age of 18 at the time the parent files the citizen application
  • The child must have entered the U.S legally and must be residing physically with the U.S citizen parent
  • Adopted children can become a citizen under section 320 of the INA if the child satisfies the requirements applicable to adopted children under sections 101(b)(1)(E), (F) or (G) of the INA.

For a child to qualify for citizenship through their parents, the child must be umarried at the time of the application. If the child is born to unmarried parents, then the application for citizenship must be applied before the child’s 17th birthday. See section 101(c)(1) of the INA. Step childten who have not been adopted, do not qualify for citizenship through parents

A child who satisfied the requirements of section 320 of the INA before turning 18 automatically obtains citizenship without having to file an application. However, the individual must file Form N-600, Application for Certificate of Citizenship.

Individuals who were age 18 or older on February 27, 2001, do not qualify for citizenship under section 320 of the INA as amended by the CCA. A person who was over the age of 18 on February 27, 2001, may, however, be a citizen under the law in effect prior to the enactment of the CCA.

For more info about Citizenship Through Parents, go to USCIS.gov