San Diego is a city with a heavy military population and many people who are deployed or stationed overseas for a time. In many instances, people who are deployed overseas will decide to marry a foreign national. A concern for these military members is the ability to get naturalization for their spouse in an expedited manner. Understanding the criteria for this to take place is key.
The spouse of a U.S. citizen who is a member of the military while that person is deployed or will be deployed can get expedited naturalization based on the immigrantion and Nationality Act (INA), Section 319(b).
There are certain rules that must be adhered to for the person to be eligible to apply under this section. The applicant must be 18 or older. It must be established that the spouse is deployed as a member of the armed services. And, the person must be present in the U.S. as a lawful permanent resident when the interview regarding the application is given.
When the person is naturalized, he or she must declare in good faith that the process is due to the intention to live with the spouse while he or she is abroad and then live in the U.S. when the spouse’s service ends. He or she must be able to speak, read and write English. There must be a basic knowledge of the history of the U.S. and the government. And, the person must be of good moral character, follow the principles outlined in the Constitution and be able to adhere to the principles for good order in the U.S.
It might be confusing and worrisome to have a foreign national as a spouse and wonder how to handle the situation when returning from deployment, but it is possible for the spouse to be naturalized in an expedited manner provided the requirements be met. For help with this issue or any other matter related to naturalization and family immigrantion, a qualified attorney is invaluable.
Source: USCIS.gov, “Citizenship for Spouses and Children of Military Members — Expedited Naturalization for Spouses of Military Members,” accessed on June 26, 2017