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  • How long does oath ceremony last?

    I have another stupid question...

    So, I was at the interview yesterday. I was recommended for approval, though haven't gotten the oath letter yet (well, it has only been one day. Lol).

    But, they gave me a sheet with some info about the oath ceremony (at Oakland Paramount Theatre) along with the passport application. The info sheet said that the participants should report at 9:15 am. The ceremony will start at 10:00 am and end around 10:40 am with as many as 1300 applicants.

    My question is: is that time frame realistic? I have Googled around and people keep saying around 2-3 hours. Does anyone have recent experience in Oakland (or just in general)? I am just trying to see how many classes do I have to skip. (I know Oath Ceremony is a big deal; but so does not failing all my classes...) Thanks all.

  • #2
    Tell your instructors about it in advance, probably at least one of them is a naturalized citizen him/herself. I hope you are not a PoliSci major.

    Seriously, it really depends on the actual size of the Ceremony and on when the Judge shows up. All the applicants for naturalization first have to present their Notice. You need to complete the questions on the back and sign it before you get in line. An Officer will check the answers with you and at some point somneone will take your greencard and any re-entry permits that you have. You will be seated, it may be assigned seating in groups according to a particular digit in your A# or it might be first in-first-seated. It depends on the seating arrangement and other logistics, staffing etc.

    You'll sit and wait until everyone is seated. There may be preliminary speakers, the judge usually says something they hope is inspiring, then the Oath, the Pledge, the Anthem, they should play a video message from the President, and finally, they hand out the Certificates. Examine your cert carefully and immediately report any error (they usually have table set up for "problems"). Some ceremonies have Passport agents there to collect passport applications (not all that many). Some ceremonies have folks there from non-partisan voter registration, either the Board of Elections employees or a group such as the Laegue of Women Voters to supply voter registration forms, help you fill it out and hand it in. If you do not live in the county where the Ceremony takes place they might not have the right form for everyone.

    Oath: http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/usc...00b92ca60aRCRD
    Pledge: http://www.ushistory.org/documents/pledge.htm
    Anthem: http://www.scoutsongs.com/lyrics/sta...ledbanner.html
    Last edited by BigJoe5; 22nd January 2011, 01:30 AM.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by BigJoe5 View Post
      Tell your instructors about it in advance, probably at least one of them is a naturalized citizen him/herself. I hope you are not a PoliSci major.

      Seriously, it really depends on the actual size of the Ceremony and on when the Judge shows up. All the applicants for naturalization first have to present their Notice. You need to complete the questions on the back and sign it before you get in line. An Officer will check the answers with you and at some point somneone will take your greencard and any re-entry permits that you have. You will be seated, it may be assigned seating in groups according to a particular digit in your A# or it might be first in-first-seated. It depends on the seating arrangement and other logistics, staffing etc.

      You'll sit and wait until everyone is seated. There may be preliminary speakers, the judge usually says something they hope is inspiring, then the Oath, the Pledge, the Anthem, they should play a video message from the President, and finally, they hand out the Certificates. Examine your cert carefully and immediately report any error (they usually have table set up for "problems"). Some ceremonies have Passport agents there to collect passport applications (not all that many). Some ceremonies have folks there from non-partisan voter registration, either the Board of Elections employees or a group such as the Laegue of Women Voters to supply voter registration forms, help you fill it out and hand it in. If you do not live in the county where the Ceremony takes place they might not have the right form for everyone.

      Oath: http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/usc...00b92ca60aRCRD
      Pledge: http://www.ushistory.org/documents/pledge.htm
      Anthem: http://www.scoutsongs.com/lyrics/sta...ledbanner.html
      Thanks for giving me an idea how the oath ceremony proceeds. I can only hope it will go "on time"...

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by marballe View Post

        But, they gave me a sheet with some info about the oath ceremony (at Oakland Paramount Theatre) along with the passport application. The info sheet said that the participants should report at 9:15 am. The ceremony will start at 10:00 am and end around 10:40 am with as many as 1300 applicants.

        My question is: is that time frame realistic?
        To be honest, this schedule looks rather unrealistic. You should really expect something like 2.5-3 hours. Before the ceremony even starts, there will be a check-in process, and with 1300 people it is hard to imagine that it could be done in 45 minutes. Once the check-in is completed, and everybody is seated in their proper places, there will be various speeches, probably a video or two, followed by the naturualization oath and the pledge of allegiance. Then the people will be called one by one to the stage to receive their naturalization certificates. With 1300 people just this last step is going to take quite a while. I can't imagine the ceremony being over by 10:40.
        N-400 [Chicago office, via Nebraska Service Cntr]
        Rec'd date: 12/06/2006
        FP notice date: 12/20/2006
        FP taken (Indianapolis): 01/11/2007
        2nd FP notice 09/09/2008
        2ndFP taken (Indianapolis) 09/26/2008
        Interview letter 01/24/2009
        Interview 03/26/2009 (completed)
        Oath letter rec'd 04/29/09
        Oath date 05/14/09 (completed)
        U.S. pssprt applied and rec'd (Chicago pssprt agency) 05/22/2009

        I am not a lawyer. Anything I say here is my personal opinion and should not be viewed as legal advice.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by baikal3 View Post
          Then the people will be called one by one to the stage to receive their naturalization certificates. With 1300 people just this last step is going to take quite a while. I can't imagine the ceremony being over by 10:40.
          I do not know about Oakland, but CIS organized NC distribution in Campbell (San Jose) much much better than this. When you sit, they take your oath paper based on the row. For a set of 3-4 rows, there is a separate IO. When the ceremony is done, the same IO comes and hands off the NCs in the same order the oath letters were collected. Takes about 5-10 minutes for the distribution with each IO taking care of 20-30 people I guess. They call about 5 people on stage as a token gesture. Yes, I have heard about Chicago etc., needing 4 hours, so you should really check the data for Oakland. However, in Campbell you can be in and out in 90 minutes ... arrive 20 minutes before the ceremony and leave about 1 hour or so after the start time.
          [EDIT/ADD] - BTW, campbell typical capacity is 450 people taking oath.
          GC: EB1: 1999 ==> 2004. 3 yr delay due to lost file. N400: San Jose. Apr'09 ==> Aug'09.
          I am not a lawyer, forum police, moderator, moralizer or an immigration officer. If I sound like one, use "your" best judgement.

          Comment


          • #6
            It really depends on the number of applicants and how organized the DO is. Mine took 25 min, but we were only about 70 people. With 1300 people,you should expect at least 1 to 1 1/2 hrs for the entire ceremony.
            Sent N-400 7/28/07
            PD 7/27/07
            Check cashed 12/5/07
            NOA 12/7/07
            FP notice 1/4/08 (received 1/10/08 )
            FP Date 1/30/08 (walk in done on 1/26/08 Charlotte)
            IL: 6/10/08
            ID: 8/28/08 (Durham DO) Passed!
            OL: 9/23/08
            OD: 10/06/08
            PP: 10/21/08 (applied)
            PP: 11/1/08 (received)
            ------------------------------------------

            ------------------------------------
            IMPORTANT NOTE: I am a Volunteer Moderator - one of you. I am not a lawyer. So act accordingly.

            Comment


            • #7
              Oath ceremony At Paramount, Oakland

              Hi there,

              I just attend Oath ceremony in Oakland with 1220 people. The time line was as follow:
              Time on Oath letter 09.15 AM
              Starting of Ceremony 09.30 AM
              Ceremony end 10.30 AM (Sweet....I am a US citizen!)
              After ceremony, USCIS distributed your certificates.
              Finally managed to come out from the building due to the crowd 11:00 AM
              I think people was in very good mood, so they took their time to leave the building. If you apply your passport on the spot, it may take you longer time.

              GOOD LUCK!!!!!!

              Comment


              • #8
                My husband's oath paper said be there at 11am, judge presides at 12:30pm, and that the the total time will be 2-3 hours.
                I'm a USC married to a LPR since 1996
                Dh issued GC in 2001

                DO: Lawrence, MA
                [day 1] 11/16/10: Sent N-400 to Dallas lockbox (sent money order instead of check)
                [day 3] 11/18/10: arrived
                [day 7] 11/22/10: NOA 1-797C (PD 11/18/10)
                [day14] 11/29/10: RFE via email
                [day23] 12/08/10: FP done on walk-in basis (was scheduled for 12/15)
                [day35] 12/20/10: Case transfered to local DO
                [day39] 12/24/10: Received ID for 1/31/11
                [day77] 01/31/11: Interview date
                [day100] 2/23/11: oath date

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Boysnberries View Post
                  My husband's oath paper said be there at 11am, judge presides at 12:30pm, and that the the total time will be 2-3 hours.
                  Boys,

                  I am glad to see that the N400 process is nearing the end. Congratulations!!!!
                  Disclaimer: Spend couple of semesters at Columbia Law School, but this is not a legal advice, though may include a legal jargon.

                  So, consult a competent (NOTE: COMPETENT) immigration attorney (ONE REGISTERED WITH A BAR), not a drinking bar, but a law bar...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    how long did it take?

                    Originally posted by marballe View Post
                    I have another stupid question...

                    So, I was at the interview yesterday. I was recommended for approval, though haven't gotten the oath letter yet (well, it has only been one day. Lol).

                    But, they gave me a sheet with some info about the oath ceremony (at Oakland Paramount Theatre) along with the passport application. The info sheet said that the participants should report at 9:15 am. The ceremony will start at 10:00 am and end around 10:40 am with as many as 1300 applicants.

                    My question is: is that time frame realistic? I have Googled around and people keep saying around 2-3 hours. Does anyone have recent experience in Oakland (or just in general)? I am just trying to see how many classes do I have to skip. (I know Oath Ceremony is a big deal; but so does not failing all my classes...) Thanks all.
                    ----------------------------------

                    So, I am on the same situation as you. Here I am, day after my interview (I passed all the tests and received a "congratulations" paper and waiting for the letter in the mail with the date for ceremony). My online status is not updated. My friend who had the interview on the same day as me maybe an hour later has her status updated online and it says letter was mailed today. I am now freaking out wondering if something went wrong. How long did it take for you to receive your letter in the mail??

                    Thank you so much for the time.

                    Comment

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