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What background checks does USCIS require for naturalization?

If you are working toward naturalization in the United States, there are several steps that you will have to take as a part of the process. One phase in the course of meeting your goal is undergoing and passing U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ background and security checks.

According to USCIS, you must pass a name check to prove that you are not a criminal or wanted by the FBI after you apply for naturalization. Before you can be scheduled for a naturalization interview, your name must be submitted to the FBI so that agency can search all records for a match in its Universal Index. Background and security checks will also be run on you through other agencies to ensure you do not have a criminal record.

After you have filed your naturalization application, you must attend an appointment with USCIS to submit your fingerprints. Unless you have a good reason and you let USCIS know ahead of time, your application will be invalidated if you miss this appointment. There are exemptions for the fingerprint check. For example, if you have certain medical conditions, you may receive a waiver that allows you to forgo that portion of the background check. Those who are 75 years of age or older are also not required to submit their fingerprints.

Once you have passed the name and fingerprint checks, your results will be valid for 15 months. While this information should not be taken as legal advice, it can help you understand the process of about USCIS background and security checks and what to expect.

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