Military Immigration Attorney in Jacksonville, Florida
Call (904) 204-3420 to Discuss Your Potential Benefits.
United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (UCIS) provides citizenship and residency benefits for active and former members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).
At the Weldon Law Group, PLLC, we appreciate the sacrifices that our country’s service members and their families have made and continue to make. Let our Jacksonville military immigration lawyer, Attorney Ian Weldon, help you take advantage of your UCIS benefits by guiding you and your family members through the citizenship process.
Contact us today at (904) 204-3420 or send us a message to discuss your potential benefits and schedule your free consultation.
Do You Qualify for Citizenship and Residency Benefits?
If you are an active or former service member who served at least one year, you are eligible for certain citizenship and immigration benefits in return for your military services, but the specific benefits you qualify for and the paperwork required to receive them depend on your exact situation.
Service members and their families may be eligible for the following benefits:
- The right to apply for naturalization after one year of service
- Expedited naturalization processing
- Potential overseas naturalization
- Automatic naturalization or citizenship for children
- Application fee waivers
- Posthumous citizenship eligibility and survivor benefits
- Discretionary options, including deferred removal (deportation)
The questions that you must consider when determining your benefits include, but are not limited to:
- Are you an active or inactive service member?
- How long did you serve?
- Did you serve abroad?
- Did you serve during defined periods of hostility?
- What was the nature of your discharge, if applicable?
Furthermore, as is the case with non-service member citizenship applicants, you and your family will likely be required to demonstrate knowledge of U.S. history and government, basic literacy in English, good moral character, and willingness to live according to the principles of the U.S. Constitution to receive naturalization or citizenship. You must also be able to supply specific supporting documentation verifying your identity, marital status, place of birth, and residency.
Additional Requirements for Families of Service Members
Children of Service Members
Children of service members, including adopted children born outside the U.S. on or after February 27, 2001, acquire citizenship or become naturalized through either INA 320 or 322. INA 320 grants automatic citizenship to children who meet certain conditions, and INA 322 permits children who do not qualify for automatic citizenship under INA 320 to become naturalized.
In general, the following questions determine whether a child is eligible for citizenship through INA 320 or 322:
- Is the child under the age of 18?
- Is at least one parent a U.S. citizen by birth or naturalization?
- Is the child a lawful permanent resident?
- Does the child currently reside in the U.S.?
- If the child does not reside in the U.S., are they in the custody of a U.S. citizen parent or an active service member stationed abroad?
- If the child is neither a lawful permanent resident nor resides in the U.S., does a citizen parent or grandparent maintain physical presence in the U.S.?
If a child was born before February 27, 2001, they may still be eligible for citizenship under former INA guidelines (INA 321).
Spouses of Service Members
If you are a spouse of a qualifying service member, you must consider several additional factors to determine your benefits and how you will apply for them.
These questions include, but are not limited to:
- How long have you been married?
- Is your spouse a U.S. citizen? If so, how long have they had citizenship?
- Are you a lawful permanent resident? If so, how long have you had your residency?
- Where do you currently live, in the U.S. or abroad?
- How long have you resided in the U.S.?
- Are you permitted to accompany your spouse abroad?
- Where will you live following your spouse’s termination of service?
How Can Our Jacksonville Military Immigration Lawyer Help You?
Citizenship guidelines change rapidly and, even though their timeline may be shorter, the citizenship process for service members can be more complicated than for other non-citizens simply because of the additional guidelines they must consider. That is why our team at the Weldon Law Group, PLLC wants to help service members and their families apply for citizenship.
Our military immigration lawyer in Jacksonville, Attorney Ian Weldon, has been practicing for over 12 years and has extensive knowledge of immigration law and the citizenship application process. We can help you determine what benefits you and your family qualify for and how you can receive those benefits in the timeliest manner possible. We can also assist you with completing any required forms and help prepare you for the citizenship interview.
Have you served in the U.S. Armed Forces for at least one year? Let us help you determine your citizenship and residency benefits. Call (904) 204-3420 or send us a message today.