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Citizenship Archives

Legal status, birthright citizenship and national history

The issue of birthright citizenship may be a familiar topic to Pennsylvania voters as political candidates discuss their perspectives on immigration. One of the most extreme solutions is promoted by Donald Trump, who suggests that he would like to end birthright citizenship so that undocumented parents would no longer be motivated to have children in the United States. However, this issue is not a new concern. In fact, the matter was settled by the Supreme Court in 1898.

Establishing U.S. citizenship for Pennsylvania minors

When a child under the age of 18 comes to the United States, he or she may automatically become a United States citizen when both parents become citizens. However, for those who were 18 prior to February 2001, they may become citizens if their only naturalized parent was their mother or their other parent was deceased. In the event that a child's parents got divorced, a child could be automatically naturalized if the parent with legal custody becomes naturalized.

Appeals court strikes down unconstitutional law

Pennsylvania immigrant fathers may be interested to learn about a decision in a recent case by a federal appeals court. The court ruled that the existing way that fathers and mothers have been treated differently in determining whether their children can claim citizenship rights is unconstitutional.

American Samoans and U.S. citizenship

Pennsylvania immigrants who came from American Samoa may be disappointed with a recent federal appeals court decision. The judge ruled that individuals from American Samoa are not guaranteed United States citizenship simply because of their birth in that territory.

Considerations for dual citizenship

Immigrants who are living in Pennsylvania and who would like to become naturalized American citizens while retaining citizenship in their home countries should carefully consider the advantages and disadvantages of dual citizenship. One of those disadvantages is the possibility of double taxation. The United States taxes its citizens on their worldwide income, but it does have tax treaties with some countries that provide some relief from this issue.

P-2 visa available to foreign performers

Artists and entertainers from foreign countries may be eligible to live and work temporarily in Pennsylvania if they meet the requirements of the P-2 visa. The classification applies to individuals entering the United States temporarily for the purpose of performing, either individually or as a member of a group, as part of an exchange program between a United States organization and one in a foreign country.

Understanding denaturalization

There may be residents in Pennsylvania interested in learning more about how the government has the power to revoke their U.S. citizenship. The process is officially referred to as denaturalization, and anyone subjected to this may also be deported from the country. However, anyone considered to be a naturally born citizen may not have their citizenship revoked without their consent. Naturally born citizens must choose to renounce their citizenship to the United States by their own free will.

Protecting immigrants from common scams

Immigrants living in Pennsylvania may benefit from learning more about some of the common scams that may be prevalent in the state, as described by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. The USCIS claims that the executive action announced by President Obama on Nov. 20 may lead to an increase in the number of scams targeting immigrants in the present day and near future.

Sponsoring a relative for permanent residence status

Lawful permanent residents in Pennsylvania have the ability to petition on behalf of certain relatives and then to sponsor those relatives to help them become lawful permanent residents themselves. People may only petition for certain types of relatives, however, and must be able to meet the requirements for doing so.

The final step in the naturalization process in Pennsylvania

The final step for becoming a naturalized U.S. citizen is the naturalization ceremony. The ceremony is intended for two purposes. It is both designed to celebrate the new citizens of the United States as well as to secure their allegiance to the country through a required oath.