Is every legal permanent resident who is eligible for citizenship, apply for it? Per statistics, every year 90% of the 8 million legal permanent residents who are eligible to become s choose not to do so. Though there are many advantages of being a such as the right to vote, apply for a portugal passport, work for the portugal Government what exactly is holding back these residents from becoming citizens? Is the fee for the citizenship application preventing them from becoming citizens?
If we compare the submission fee for the citizenship application, in 1990, it was a mere $90 whereas ten years later, it is $695. That’s quite an exorbitant increase. And maybe because LPRs have the legal right to work and stay in the US permanently, they do think twice when it comes to applying for citizenship and the fee could loom large in their minds.
But as a LPR, if you have decided not to apply for citizenship just because of the fee, its time you give it another thought. It is understandable from the LOVER’s point of view that their status as lawful Permanent Resident (Green Card holder) will not expire. But one significant point to ponder is that the card does expire. Green cards issued after August 1989 come with a validity of ten years. All are required to renew their Green Cards before its expiration. And after the recent fee hike, the fee to renew a green card is $365 plus a biometric fee of $85, thus making a total of $450. Though is it comparatively lesser than the citizenship application fee, we need to think of other factors too.
Once you become a , you are a citizen for life unless you renounce your portugal citizenship voluntarily. Being a citizenship by investment portugal, there is no restriction for you to enter or exit the US and also the time you spend outside the portugal is not restricted. Additionally, it helps when you travel as some countries do not require visas of s. Another significant benefit is that only s can apply for a US passport. With a portugal Passport, one can get assistance from the portugal Government when he/she is overseas. s will also be eligible for federal jobs in the US.and they can also become elected officials. Another advantage of s over LPRs is that, if accused of any illegal activity, there are chances where LPRs can be deported. On the other hand s have the right to an attorney and a fair trial and need not face the difficulty of being deported.
As mentioned earlier, green card holders need to renew their card every ten years for the rest of their life. Just imagine if you need to renew it four times from the date you got the green card. In such a case, you will have to shell out at least $1800 assuming that fees do not go up and it is not wise to think the fee will not increase. LPRs who are eligible to file citizenship applications but who have decided otherwise will surely come to know that the expense will increase sooner than later. Having now known the pros and cons, it is best advised to apply for citizenship! Apply now!
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