Q: My mother (green card holder) married an US citizen. I got my green card from him. How long I become a US citizen?
My mother has a green card. My stepfather is a US citizen and I got my green card from him. Do I have to wait 3 years or 5 years to become a US citizen?
A: The "3-year rule" applies to a permanent resident applying for naturalization who is married to and living with a U.S. Citizen. So, unless you would be basing your own naturalization application on your marriage to and cohabitation with a U.S. Citizen, notwithstanding how you obtained your permanent resident status, then you would need to wait 5 years. However, depending on your age at the time of your mother's prospective naturalization, you might acquire U.S. Citizenship by virtue of your mother naturalizing. If you will be over the age of 18 on the date your mother naturalizes, then this will not be a possibility. Consider scheduling a consultation with a competent immigration attorney who can evaluate the facts of your case against the laws.
A: You may qualify for Naturalization if you have been a permanent resident for at least 5 years and meet all other eligibility requirements. You might be confused by the fact your mother may qualify for Naturalization if she has been a permanent resident only for 3 years or more and meet all eligibility requirements to file as a spouse of a U.S. citizen.
I strongly suggest you consult with an immigration attorney when at the time you are eligible to Naturalize. Immigrating is a complex process even if it might seem simple at first sight. I wish you the best,
Ana S. Mendieta, Esq.
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