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Minors may get citizenship through their naturalized parents

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Immigrants in Maryland who have a parent that became a naturalized U.S. citizen may be able to automatically claim citizenship. A person who was a U.S. permanent resident and a minor at the time the parent was naturalized may have already achieved that status, depending upon the satisfaction of certain requirements.

The rules include that the parent became a naturalized citizen before the minor turned 18. This event then means that the permanent resident children will automatically become U.S. citizens upon their parent's naturalization. They can also become a U.S. citizen if the parent becomes naturalized first and then the children become permanent residents, as long as it occurs before they turn 18. The parent who is naturalized must have custody over the minor if divorced, or if not, the other parent must be deceased.

People will need to get proof of their citizenship status based on their parent's status. They can apply for a citizenship certificate, which will clearly show that they are U.S. citizens. They can also apply for a passport, and if it is issued it is considered to be proof of being a U.S. citizen.

This type of automatic citizenship means that the minor will not be required to go through the regular naturalization application process. People who believe they are eligible for citizenship under these rules may want to consult with an immigration and naturalization lawyer for assistance with gathering documentation and completing the application for their Certificate of Citizenship. Obtaining citizenship status affords a person several important rights and privileges, including voting and holding office.

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