Preparing for Your Naturalization Interview

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Preparing for Your Naturalization Interview

You have gone through the process of applying for citizenship and finally, you have received the appointment letter notifying you of your naturalization interview. It is both exciting and a bit nerve-racking. Now, you need to prepare for the interview. What do you need to do?

What you need to take to the interview

  • Permanent resident card (green card);
  • Passport;
  • State identification card (driver’s license);
  • Re-entry permits, if any; and
  • Other documents that USCIS has requested.

Tips for the interview

  • Arrive to the interview on time. You may have to wait some time before you are called but be punctual, regardless. If you miss your appointment, you will have to reschedule and getting another appointment time will push back the process considerably. Also, missing your appointment will reflect badly on you and may result in USCIS closing your case.
  • If, once you have received your appointment letter, you realize that you cannot make the appointment, reschedule promptly and explain the reason you cannot make it.
  • Dress appropriately. It is best to wear business casual clothes to the interview. This means that jeans and t-shirts should not be worn.
  • Make sure that your answers to the questions the USCIS officer asks you are consistent with the documents you have provided. If there are any discrepancies, be transparent about them and explain why they exist.
  • You are under oath at the interview and you should assume that USCIS already knows everything about you. Therefore, it will not be to your benefit to lie or hide information that you are asked about.
  • It is a good idea to review your application for naturalization in preparation for the interview. USCIS will mainly address information from the application. You can have a friend or family member quiz you with questions based on your application.
  • You will be tested on English so you should spruce up your English speaking skills before the interview. During the interview, if you do not understand a question that the USCIS officer asks you, ask the officer to repeat or rephrase the question. It is better to do that instead of proceeding with a misunderstanding.
  • You will also be tested on civics. There is a pool of 100 questions that the USCIS officer can choose from. You may be asked up to 10 questions and you will need to answer at least 6 correctly. You can find resources that will prepare you for these questions and provide you with the correct answers. Know these questions and answers thoroughly.
  • Be pleasant with USCIS officer. He or she is a person just like you and will appreciate a pleasant demeanor. Also, try to be calm and collected. If you have prepared adequately for the interview, it should go smoothly.

The above are tips that will help you get through the naturalization interview. If you there are issues that you foresee, consult an experienced immigration attorney at Kriezelman, Burton & Associates, LLC to receive guidance on how to handle the issues.