Wanting to become a naturalized citizen is a more lofty goal that many people may realize. The process involved with naturalization is long and complex, and many people can wait years before they become citizens. Of course, in order to even work toward naturalization, applicants must meet the requirements under U.S. immigration law.
Louisiana residents and those throughout the country who hope to obtain citizenship must have good moral character. However, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services do not simply look at a person to determine whether he or she may have good moral character. There are specific actions, which mostly include carrying out illegal acts, that could prevent someone from meeting this requirement. Some of those unlawful acts include a false claim to citizenship, bank fraud, bail jumping, failure to file or pay taxes, insurance fraud, harassment and others.
Recently, the USCIS provided new guidance regarding good moral character. Now, if a person has two or more convictions for driving under the influence, it is possible for those convictions to hinder that individual’s chances of being seen as having good moral character. The USCIS deputy director indicated that the new guidance would help make more uniform and fair decisions regarding good moral character.
Unfortunately, some unlawful acts can be viewed more harshly for individuals who are not yet citizens of the United States. If individuals in Louisiana are hoping to achieve their citizenship goals and have concerns about good moral character, they may want to discuss the matter with experienced attorneys. U.S. immigration law is changing and confusing, so having the right help can go a long way.