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Certificate of Citizenship (N-600)

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Form N-600 Application for Certificate of Citizenship

The USCIS Form N-600, Application for Certificate of Citizenship, is used by people outside of the United States to get proof of their right to citizenship.

Most applicants using Form N-600 are effectively already citizens through a parent, but do not have a document showing their citizenship. Form N-600 then provides a U.S. citizenship document to them.

It is important to note that getting a citizenship certificate is different than the process of naturalization. Naturalization is the process of asking for the right to become a citizenship. Requesting a citizenship certificate is simply asking for proof of an already existing status.

Who can apply using form N-600?

This form is mostly used for the daughters and sons of U.S. citizens who were born abroad and so, the child can apply on their own behalf or their parent can file the application for them.

A child's eligibility for a citizenship certificate is a matter of the laws at the time of their birth and their relationship with their parents.

The process is slightly different for adopted children compared to the process for natural children of U.S. citizens.

What documents are required for the N-600 application?

The USCIS asks for supporting documentation for most applications, which show that you are eligible for the benefits that the application would grant you.

The Application for Certificate of Citizenship has many eligibility requirements and therefore asks for extensive documentation.

The following list includes some requirements and documents that you may be asked to show the USCIS. All applicants should look at their filing instructions closely to find the documents that would best apply to their situation.

  • Your birth certificate
  • Your parent's birth certificate
  • Proof of your parent's U.S. citizenship
  • Parents' marriage certificate (and divorce documents if applicable)
  • Children born out of wedlock may need to show legitimation
  • Proof of custody (for children of divorced couples)
  • Permanent residency card
  • Proof of the parent's physical residence in the United States (The parent has to have lived in the U.S. for at least one continuous year in the U.S. prior to your birth)
  • Adoption decree
  • Records of legal name changes (if necessary)

Note about translation: documents in languages other than English will need to be translated. Translated documents need to include copies of the following: the original document, the translation and an affidavit from the translator attesting to the translation's accuracy.

What is the process and how long does it take?

The process of applying for a citizenship certificate begins with filing the form. The USCIS may then ask for more information or an interview before they make a decision.

The backlog of N-600 forms is at more than a year for many USCIS field offices, so it may take at least that long for you to receive your citizenship certificate.

How much does it cost?

For most cases, filing Form N-600 with form assistance includes the following fees:

  • Form assistance fee: $199
  • USCIS fee: $1,170
  • Total: $1,369