Naturalization Form N-445
Posted by Frank Gogol
Many immigrants and nonimmigrants come to the United States hoping to become an American citizen someday. There are many steps that one needs to take towards that, including filing Form N-445. In this article, we’ll thoroughly explain the role of Form N-445 in the naturalization process and how to handle the form properly.
Table of Contents
What Is Form N-445?
Form N-445, known as the Notice of Naturalization Oath Ceremony, is a form provided by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services to notify an applicant of the date and place of his/her oath ceremony. It’s also known colloquially as the oath ceremony letter. Consider the form as a stepping stone in your American citizenship process.
The immigration process starts with you meeting all the eligibility criteria, completing Form N-400 (Application for Naturalization), submitting all documents, and attending the naturalization interview. But the process doesn’t end there; you’re asked to take an English and Civics test and then wait for the decision.
If you pass, you’ve almost made it to becoming an American. If you fail, however, you’ll be asked to leave the country once your visa status expires.
After you have passed the tests and the USCIS has approved your naturalization application, it will notify you by mail to attend the naturalization oath ceremony. This notice is called Form N-445.
Who Needs Form N-445?
Form N-445 is used by the USCIS to notify candidates they have passed the naturalization test. So if you have attended the interview, you may receive Form N-445 informing you about the oath ceremony you are required to attend.
However, not all oath takers are issued Form N-445. For example, if your oath ceremony is scheduled on the same day as your interview date (known as the same day oath), the USCIS officials will ask you to come later in the day to take the oath without issuing a notice.
How to Fill out Form N-445
The main purpose of Form N-445 is to notify you of the upcoming oath ceremony that you need to attend. This is a two-page document consisting of the following:
On the first page, you’ll see your Alien Registration Number on the top right-hand side of the document. Just under that, there will be a section that lists the date the form was issued. Both of these details will help you ensure that the document is indeed for you.
Scanning down the document, you’ll come across the following sentence:
“You are hereby notified to appear for a Naturalization Oath Ceremony On…At…”
This contains the date and place where you need to report to take your oath. You must cross verify the information and look for any typos which, though they are highly unlikely.
On the same page, the document will list the items you are required to bring with you to the oath ceremony. These are:
- The N-445 document
- Your permanent resident card
- Every type of reentry permit, refugee travel document, and USCIS document ever issued to you
If the naturalization process is on behalf of your child or they’re also taking part in the naturalization process, you’ll be asked to bring them along with you as well.
On the second page, there is a series of 8 simple yes-or-no questions; these help officials decide on your naturalization. Some of these questions, like the eighth one — Have You Practiced Polygamy, Been A Prostitute, Procured Anyone For Prostitution — may feel personal, but you should be ready to answer them truthfully. Even if you’ve been secretly involved in any of these practices, it won’t count towards a bad moral character.
However, if you lie, and later the authorities find out, it can have a severe impact. But don’t tick off the questions just yet. You’ll be doing it at the oath ceremony. Just stay prepared.
After the set of questions, you’ll find a section where you need to self-certify that the answers you provided were correct to your knowledge. Sign the document, write the city and state and date.
Now you’re done with the document from your end. The sections that follow usually pertain to privacy policies and the paperwork reduction act. You don’t need to put much emphasis on those.
What Do I Do When I Receive Form N-445?
After you receive the form, you need to review it and make sure the date and location are correct. You’ll be required to take the N-445 with you to the oath ceremony.
Check-In at the Ceremony
You need to attend the oath ceremony at the given date and time. If you cannot attend you’re required to return the N-445 to the local office by post. Also, you must include a letter stating the reasons why you cannot attend the oath ceremony. The USCIS will then reschedule the ceremony and issue an updated N-445.
Answer All Questions Truthfully
Once you’re at the local office, officials will ask you several questions, including the eight yes-or-no questions listed on the document. You should answer all of them truthfully and inform them if you’re unsure of any questions accordingly.
Return the Immigration Documents
The USCIS will take back all issued documents pertaining to your current visa status, which includes, but is not limited to, your Permanent Resident Card, reentry permits, and refugee travel documents. Since you’ll be a U.S. citizen, which will change your status, the issued documents will no longer remain valid. Therefore, you need to surrender them at the oath ceremony.
Take the Oath
Finally, you need to take the Oath of Allegiance and affirm all the terms mentioned by the officials. You can always request a “Modified Oath” in case your religious beliefs clash with you bearing arms for the United States. You’ll have to provide satisfactory evidence for it as well.
How to Become Naturalized: An Overview
The oath ceremony is just a part of the overall naturalization process. The whole process can be summarized as follows:
- Submit Form N-400 after satisfying all eligibility criteria.
- Acquire at least two recent photographs matching the requirements.
- Gather all the documents and prepare photocopies.
- Send your application via mail along with a fee draft of around $725.
- Attend the biometrics appointment and provide your fingerprints and background check.
- Attend the naturalization interview.
- Take the English and Civics test pertaining to U.S. laws and regulations.
- Wait for a decision. If you pass, the USCIS will send you Form N-445.
- Attend the oath ceremony and become naturalized.
You are not an American citizen unless you take the Oath of Allegiance at the naturalization ceremony. Therefore, it is highly important, and the experience will be memorable and rewarding. If you have any questions or concerns, you should seek legal advice with a registered attorney in your area.