What happens after you pass your naturalization interview?

Written by ellie williams
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What happens after you pass your naturalization interview?
After you pass your naturalisation interview, you'll take your citizenship oath. (Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images)

The in-person interview is a key step in the naturalisation process, which is overseen by the U. S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). During the interview you'll be asked about your application and about your background, and you'll be required to take an English and a civics test. The English test demonstrates you can read, write and speak English, and the civics test confirms you understand the history and principles of the United States government. Passing the naturalisation interview is the final step before taking the citizenship oath.The steps after the interview all lead up to the oath ceremony.

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You Receive a Decision

After the interview, the USCIS gives you Form N-652, which provides information about the results of your interview and the status of your application. If your application is approved, you may receive the results immediately after your interview, and you may be able to attend the oath ceremony the same day. Or, you may receive a notice in the mail approving your application. This Notice of Naturalization Oath Ceremony (Form N-445) gives you the date, time and location of your oath ceremony.

You Check In at the Ceremony

If you are allowed the take the oath the same day as the interview, you'll likely be asked to come back later in the day. If not, you'll attend the ceremony listed on your Notice of Naturalization Oath Ceremony letter. You'll need to arrive at least 30 minutes prior to the ceremony. You'll also return your Permanent Resident Card, because you'll receive a Certificate of Naturalization after taking the oath.

You Complete a Follow-Up Interview

If more than a day has elapsed since your naturalisation interview, you'll need to answer several follow-up questions about your activities since the interview. The questions are listed on the back of your Notice of Naturalization Oath Ceremony letter, and include things like "Have you travelled outside the United States?" The USCIS only wants an explanation of your activities since the interview, so you don't need to cover anything you already told them.

You Take the Oath

Everyone seeking naturalisation must recite the Oath of Allegiance at a formal ceremony in the presence of a USCIS official. Applicants can request to recite a modified oath on the basis of religious beliefs, for example, if they do not want to say "so help me God." If you want an exemption, you must provide a written request listing the parts of the oath you do not want to recite and explaining why they conflict with your religious beliefs. As part of the oath ceremony, you must also renounce any hereditary or noble titles you held in your home country.

You Receive Your Certificate of Naturalization

Immediately after the ceremony, you'll receive your Certificate of Naturalization, which provides proof that you are an official United States citizen. You'll need to take the certificate to a Social Security Administration (SSA) office to update your citizenship status. Updating your status is important because employers require proof that you are authorised to work in the United States. It's also important that the SSA have your most current information to ensure that you accrue benefits while you are employed and can draw Social Security Insurance when you retire.

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