Individuals who enter Pennsylvania or another state in the U.S. are expected to do so legally. If they are in the country legally and seek naturalization to become citizens, they will derive all the benefits U.S. citizenship offers without needing to worry about deportation. That includes employment, schooling and more. For residents who want to become naturalized citizens of the U.S., it is essential to understand the legal steps to do so.

There are fundamental requirements to be eligible for naturalization. When the person files the necessary forms, he or she must be at least 18. It is required that the individual be a permanent resident of the U.S. and have a so-called green card for a minimum of five years. As for living arrangements, the person must prove that he or she resides in the state of the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services district where the application is made.

The applicant must prove U.S. residency for five years before filing the forms. Physical presence is critical; the person must have been in the U.S. for at least 30 months of those five years. Applicants are expected to have a working knowledge of English including speaking, reading and writing. The history of the U.S. and its government should also be understood in a basic way. Good character is a part of the application process, and this must be shown too. There are principles and goals inherent with the U.S. Constitution that the applicant must show an attachment to.

People who come to the U.S. may want to help their families, find a better job, get improved schooling and a have a positive overall quality life. A common problem when seeking naturalization is if the applicant tries to complete the process without advice. This can lead to mistakes that slow or end the process. Contacting a firm experienced in immigration may be helpful.