Duration of Time Before a Legal Permanent Resident May Apply for Naturalization


For foreign nationals who are in the process of immigrating to the United States, possibly on a permanent basis, there are a few little-known rules that they should keep in mind. One of these is the time an applicant must wait before he or she applies for naturalization.

In order to qualify for Naturalization, the applicant must have lived continuously in the United States for a certain period of time. The applicant must have a physical residence in the United States and may be required to show proof that they have been physically present in the United States.

For the majority of applicants, the applicant must have been physically present in the US for thirty months within the five-year period before the applicant applied. This means that the applicant must have spent half of their time in the United States during their 5-year period. There are a few exceptions to this rule.

For a qualified spouse of a US citizen, the rule is a little different. The applicant in this case only has had to be physically present in the US for eighteen months within a three-year period before the applicant applied. This means that the applying spouse has had to be physically present in the United States for half of the three-year period.

Finally, the applicant must show that prior to filing he or she has lived in the United States for three months. This can be accomplished in a number of ways; credit card statements showing purchases made in the United States in that time, rent paid for the place of residence, even pictures taken in the United States during that time. The more proof of this the better, however it must be in the state or city where the applicant is living.

This is an immigration legal blog. It is not intended to be used as legal advice. For further information please contact the law offices of attorney Ramona Kennedy.

Ramona Kennedy (Attorney) received her Jurisprudence Doctorate in America and is a licensed attorney in California (USA). Ramona Kennedy is a member of American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). Ramona Kennedy is fluent in English and Farsi (reading & writing) & speaks Azeri Turkish.

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Nav: sealing criminal records - california

Title: Sealing of criminal records in CA

Lengthy & create new subpage under “criminal law”

False arrests will show on your permanent record for the entirety of your life and can prevent you from various opportunities in life if banks, employers, or landlords do a criminal background check on you. Even if charges were filed against you, however the case was dismissed, the charges will still be visible on your record and hold you back from many opportunities. They will negatively affect your ability to find employment especially. By sealing your arrest, you are able to finally move forward in your life and forget about your past. This will ensure your ability to live a life without the worry of your criminal background holding you back in any way.

Within this form of sealing your arrest, being able to say you have never been arrested freely and truthfully as the information within sealed arrests will no longer be shown on background checks.

There are two different ways to seal an arrest record:

PC 851.8: – The first method requires proving factual innocence. This could be quite difficult to prove but should ultimately prove that you should not have been arrested in the first place given the evidence that was presented. According to PC 851.8, there is a required two-year period with the court that one could file the arrest record sealing request from the initial date that one had been arrested. However, if the arrest pasts the two-year period, a waiver may be requested but may delay the process.

PC 851.91 - The second method requires proving that you are eligible for relief. This is a much more new and simple approach in comparison to the first method, however they both are effective in sealing an arrest record in the state of California.

  • Requirements for Sealing an Arrest Record:
  • Arrested in the state of California
  • Statute of limitations had passed
  • No convictions as a result of arrest

Legally, you can truthfully share that you have never been arrested and answer “no” on nearly any application asking if you have ever been arrested.

There is no reason for a wrongful arrest to remain on your permanent record and hold you back in life. Under PC 851.91 or PC 851.8 getting your arrest record sealed will allow you to leave your past behind you and provide you relief of a new and fresh beginning.

  • Benefits of Sealing an Arrest Record
  • Increase employment opportunities
  • Arrest no longer shown on background checks
  • Permanently removed from criminal record
  • Honestly say that you have never been arrested
  • Eligible for more beneficial assistance in housing
  • Eligible for more student loans
  • Eligible for more certificates and licenses
  • More relief in forgetting about the past and moving on for good

It is advisable to seek legal guidance from our office today as we strive to help guide you with your specific case. 

Attorney Ramona Kennedy cares about your case and will fight for you.

You can contact attorney Ramona Kennedy Law Offices (Kennedy Law LC) for an initial consultation and case evaluation. The first consultation is free of charge. 

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Email: [email protected]

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