Applying for Naturalization

Can I legally change my name when I naturalize?

You can change your name as part of your naturalization if a court in your area conducts naturalization oath ceremonies. Otherwise, no name change can be recorded on your Certificate of Naturalization unless you already changed you name legally (such as by marriage) before completing the naturalization process. If you decide to change your name, you will be required to complete a Petition for Name Change during your interview. Petitioning the court to change your name may delay the date of your oath ceremony, in some cases. If you petition to change your name, the new name will not be legally binding until after your oath ceremony. Your new name will appear on your Certificate of Naturalization. The USCIS does not process petitions for name change after naturalization. However, you still may change your name after naturalization by other legal means.


Do I need a lawyer? Can you refer me to good citizenship lawyers?

You do not need a lawyer unless you have had certain issues with the police and/or government.

Please look at our Stop Sign sheet and if you answer yes you might need one, but you should attend one of our workshops to get a consultation first. See ICIRR's attorney referral list here.


If I have been convicted of a crime but my record has been expunged, do I need to indicate that on my application or tell Immigration Authorities?

Yes. You should always be honest with Immigration regarding all:

  • Arrests (including those by police, Immigration Officers, and other Federal Agents); convictions (even if they have been expunged); and crimes you have committed for which you were not arrested or convicted.

Even if you have committed a minor crime, Immigration may deny your application if you do not tell the Immigration officer about the incident. It is extremely important that you tell Immigration about any arrest even if someone else has advised you that you are not required to do so.


What do I need to bring to a Citizenship Workshop?

To be able to fill out your citizenship application you will need to bring the following to the workshop:

  •   Green card, Social Security Card and your Driver’s license or State ID (originals and copies)
  •  Dates of all travels outside the U.S. since you have had your green card
  •  A list of all your addresses for the past 5 years AND of all your employers, dates and locations for the past 5 years
  •  Your spouse’s name, date of birth, social security number AND green card number (if applicable) OR date of naturalization (if applicable)
  •  The date of marriage and divorce from previous marriages of you and your spouse (if applicable)
  •  The names, date of birth, and green card number of your children and their addresses if not living with you (if applicable)
  •  Arrest dates, reasons and outcomes (get your certified court dispositions, if any)
  •  Males: Your Selective Service number and registration date – if you don’t know Call (847) 688-6888 or go to
  •  Money order of $680 payable to USCIS. For those older than 75 years of age money order of $595
  •  2 passport photos (faced front)

Documents Checklist (Chinese) 172.13 KB

Documents Checklist (Korean) 176.34 KB

Documents Checklist (Polish) 161.33 KB

Documents Checklist (Spanish) 136.56 KB

Documents Checklist (Hindi) 3.15 MB

Documents Checklist (Arabic) 2.68 MB


What form do I use to file for naturalization?

You should use an "Application for Naturalization" (Form N-400), which you can download here:


Where do I send my application?

Send to the service center of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services in your area.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Service Centers

For Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, Territory of Guam, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands:

California Service Center
P.O. Box 10400
Laguna Niguel, CA 92607-0400

For Alaska, Colorado, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin, Wyoming:

Nebraska Service Center
P.O. Box 87400
Lincoln, NE 68501-7400

For Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, North Carolina, Tennessee, Texas:

Texas Service Center
P.O. Box 851204
Mesquite, TX 75185-1204

For Connecticut, District of Columbia, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands:

Vermont Service Center
75 Lower Weldon Street
St. Albans, VT 05479-0001