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The possibility of losing U.S. citizenship over a lie

On Behalf of | Jun 26, 2017 | Citizenship |

What a foreign national desiring to become a citizen of the U.S. includes in their citizenship application and does during the naturalization process can have many major impacts. It could impact how quickly the process ends up going. It could also influence how likely the person is to achieve their goal of becoming a U.S. citizen.

There are even some types of actions during the naturalization process that could put a person at risk of someday losing their citizenship after being granted it. One of these is lying during the naturalization process. The U.S. Supreme Court recently issued a decision regarding what kinds of lies during this process can put a person who receives U.S. citizenship in danger of having their citizenship stripped from them.

The case involved a woman who was granted U.S. citizenship who had her citizenship stripped in connection to a lie she purportedly told during the naturalization process. The main issue that came before the U.S. Supreme Court in relation to this case was whether there are any limits to what naturalization process lies can justify stripping a person of U.S. citizenship.

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that there were limits in this regard. Specifically, it ruled that in order for a lie told during the naturalization process to be used as grounds to remove citizenship from a person after it is granted, the lie has to have contributed, in some respect, to the person having received citizenship. So, immaterial/trivial lies generally wouldn’t count in this regard. The court has sent the woman’s case back down to the lower courts to be considered in light of this ruling.

So, there are limits to what kinds of naturalization-process-lies could eventually put a person at risk of facing loss of citizenship. However, even with this in mind, lying during the pursuit of U.S. citizenship still has the potential to have massive ramifications. So, honesty remains the best policy when it comes to the naturalization process.

Another thing it can be crucial for a person to avoid during this process is mistakes, as these too could put up substantial barriers to a person achieving their overall goals related to citizenship.

Immigration lawyers can advise foreign nationals on what mistakes and missteps it is critical to avoid during the naturalization process.


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