A Guide to the Benefits and Responsibilities of Being a U.S Citizen

Despite what you might see in the news, a whopping 77% of the immigrants in the United States are legal. A lot of people aspire to become a US citizen.

If you plan to get American citizenship, know that it comes with lots of benefits. But with it comes a set of responsibilities to ensure your stay in the country is productive and worthwhile. If you aren’t familiar with them, you might feel doubtful about your qualifications.

Don’t feel hesitant yet, we’ll guide you through the process.

With this guide, you’ll learn the benefits of US citizenship. Read on and find out more.

Sponsorship of Relatives for Permanent Residency

Once you get full American citizenship, you can sponsor your immediate relatives. It means they can get the U.S. Legal Permanent Resident status without the visa. It means your parents, spouses, and minor children can get the Green Card by your endorsement as an American citizen.

You can also sponsor other relatives, as long as they have visas and they have the following qualifications:

  • Unmarried children 21 years and older
  • Married children of American citizens
  • Siblings of American citizens 21 years and older
  • Married children of American citizens

This is one of the most attractive benefits of becoming a US citizen. After all, moving to America often meant better a life for the family. With the ease of getting family members to migrate to the country, you’ll never feel alone.

Getting Citizenship for Children Born Overseas

Most of the time, a child born to an American citizen will automatically have their parent’s citizenship. This holds even when they’re born in foreign soil. As a general rule, you can get your child full citizenship as soon as you give birth or at any age before 18.

Congress made laws determining the way an American parent conveys their citizenship to children born outside the country. That means as long as a parent is a citizen during the child’s birth, the child will be an American citizen too. It’s possible as long as the parent lived in the United States within the required duration.

Government Employment Eligibility

Some employment opportunities are exclusive to American citizens. One of these is jobs within the federal government. If you want to have a better economic situation, become a naturalized citizen.

Studies conclude that naturalized American citizens earn 50-70% more compared to non-American citizens. They also have a higher rate of employment, meaning they’re unlikely to live in poverty. For a new citizen, you’ll expect your earnings to increase since you can prepare for jobs, match with employers, and switch jobs better.

Travel Freedom

American citizens have the freedom to go anywhere without restrictions. This isn’t the case for people only possessing a Legal Permanent Resident status. With American citizenship, you can re-enter the country without needing to re-establish your admissibility proof.

Also, you have no need to update the U.S. Customs and Immigration Services whenever you move. After all, as an American citizen, you’re eligible for a passport. This ensures that you won’t get deported and will get aid from the American government while traveling abroad.

Ability to Vote

Another major benefit of U.S. citizenship is the right to vote. That’s why if you want leaders to represent yourself, your family, and your community in America, get the right citizenship. You can also run for and get elected to any government office, except for the President.

Take note, you have a say in federal, state, and local elections. But if you aim to make your voice heard, ensure that you apply for citizenship as early as possible. After all, on average, you’ll wait around 10 months to get an application approval.

If you add the other steps involved in gaining citizenship, you could end up spending 1.6 years. Also, check out this article if you’re curious about whether your US citizenship application needs a renewal of your expiring green card. It’s a useful guide if you’re already a resident of the country.

Great for Planning for the Future

Having American citizenship means getting an additional layer of security to your endeavors. Whether it’s business startups, career-building, or getting a permanent home, planning your future is easier. Becoming a naturalized citizen is also a fantastic gift for your children since they gain the same benefits as you.

Expressing your patriotism through citizenship is also a practical decision. With this, you can seize more opportunities the country has to offer. Take note, your eligibility for citizenship comes from investing years of your life as a productive part of society. The citizenship will seal the deal, with you committing to the American dream while getting the assurance that you’re welcome to live in the United States.

Responsibilities of American Citizens

Hopefully, this answers the question “what are the benefits of being a citizen?” Of course, citizenship will come with various responsibilities. It means you must make several promises when you get your United States citizenship.

Once you become an American citizen, you must relinquish other allegiances to other nations and sovereignties. Instead, you swear allegiance to the United States by supporting and defending its laws and the Constitution. That means you’ll also need to render service to the country as required.

Aside from the responsibilities stated in the Oath, you also have other responsibilities as a citizen. You must join the political process by voting. Another thing you should do is to serve on juries to help enact justice.

Finally, you must tolerate differences as an American citizen. Remember, America is a hotpot of various opinions, ethnic groups, cultures, and religions. Strengthening the country means respecting these things.

Learn More Benefits of US Citizenship Today!

These are some things you must consider when thinking about the benefits of US citizenship. That way, you’ll have a more informed decision on whether American citizenship is worth your while. It’s always better to know exactly what you’re getting before you commit to it.

However, it doesn’t end here. You can’t reap the benefits of being a US citizen without first applying. To learn how, feel free to check out more of our tips and tricks right here.


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Kevin Benoit

Kevin Benoit is the editor of Parlé Magazine. He founded the magazine while in college and continues to run it today. Follow him on IG: @parlewithme Read more articles by Kevin.

Kevin Benoit has 1776 posts and counting. See all posts by Kevin Benoit

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