USCIS doesn’t care that the State Department gave you a passport.
Hi, I’m Jim Hacking, immigration lawyer practicing law throughout the United States out of our office here in St. Louis, Missouri. One of the great things about being an immigration lawyer is that you can talk to people all over the world.
I did a Skype consult the other day with a middle-aged man, he’s younger than me, from Israel. He had obtained his citizenship before two of his kids turned 18. We did some analysis and it turns out that under the law I believe that they are entitled to certificates of citizenship, which are the N-600 application. That’s how you prove that a young person has actually become a citizen.
You can become a citizen by operation of law if one of your custodial parents becomes a citizen before you turn 18, and they’ve lived in the United States long enough to qualify under the statute.
It turns out that these kids were probably U.S. citizens, but they did not have an N-600. They were spending a lot of time in Israel and a lot of time in the United States, but not enough time maybe in the United States.
The question was what do you do in those situations? He had obtained a passport from the State Department and he was wondering if that would protect the kids later, if anyone ever claimed that they weren’t a U.S. citizen.
The point I wanted to make for him, and the reason I’m shooting this video, is that just because the State Department gives someone a passport doesn’t mean necessarily that the person is a citizen.
Most likely they’re a citizen, but the State Department does make mistakes. For the purposes of this video, the point I want to make is that they aren’t bound by what the State Department finds. So you still want to get an N-600 for your child.
I can’t think of a greater gift that a parent can give their child than citizenship, but it doesn’t mean as much and it doesn’t go as far if you don’t actually get them that certificate of citizenship.
The problem is the N-600 has doubled in cost in the last couple of years. Again, that’s because Trump and his fan boys want to keep as many people as possible from becoming citizens.
That form used to cost like $550 or something like that, now it’s almost $1,100. A lot of people don’t want to go through the hassle of the N-600, but from the bottom of my heart, based on the situations I’ve seen, please get your child their certificate of citizenship. Please clean up their record with USCIS so that if they ever want to sponsor someone or if they ever get in criminal trouble, there’s no doubt that they’re U.S. citizen.
You don’t want to have to be scrambling to do that later. It’s much better to do it now and then you’re done with it for the rest of your life. The kid’s a citizen, you want to establish it, you don’t want there to be any doubt and you don’t want your family to have mixed immigration status if you can avoid it. So make sure you filed that N-600.
We’d be happy to help you if you need it, but it’s relatively straightforward. It usually doesn’t involve an interview, but the N-600 is an important piece of the immigration toolkit that we lawyers use and it’s important that you make sure that your children’s longterm security in the United States is safe and sound.
If you have questions about the N-600 process or about this crazy video that I just made, give us a call, 314-961-8200. You can email us at [email protected] Be sure to join us in our Facebook group, which is called Immigrant Home. If you liked this video, we ask that you please share it out on social so that you get updates whenever we make videos just like this one.
Thanks a lot, have a great day.