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Proving citizenship

Discussion in 'Passports' started by gymgirl, Sep 14, 2017.

  1. gymgirl

    gymgirl New Member

    My wife is trying to apply for a passport but is being told she needs proof that she is a citizen. All she has is the original passport that her mother used when she entered with her when she was 6 years old. The passport has alien registration numbers for both and an extract of entry of birth for her. Both her parents are now deceased. She has been here 37 years. What documentation do we need and how can we obtain them?
  2. Pierre82

    Pierre82 Well-Known Member

    Hi @gymgirl ,

    I´m not an expert in the process but I will share this website that provides further information. https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/passports/information/citizenship-evidence.html Hope this helps and best of luck to your wife´s application
  3. newacct

    newacct Well-Known Member

    Can you give more details about her? How does she think she became a citizen? I assume she was born abroad.

    Did she become a citizen automatically at birth from her parents? If so, when was she born? Were one or both of her parents US citizens at the time of her birth? Was she born in wedlock or out of wedlock? How much time did her US citizen parent(s) spend in the US before her birth? Did her parents ever get her a CRBA or US passport?

    Or did she become a citizen after birth from her parents? (This would generally require that she was in the US as a permanent resident, and her parents naturalized while she was a minor.)
  4. SusieQQQ

    SusieQQQ Well-Known Member

    Having an alien registration number does not mean you automatically become a citizen at some stage, however if you do (see newacct's response above) then uscis should have the records of that A number undergoing naturalization which would enable her to apply for a citizenship certificate. I have no idea how you'd get those records but I'm sure there's some kind of process for doing so, this can't be a unique situation.
    It is odd that her mom would have kept the old passport but not a naturalization certificate however....is your wife absolutely sure that she is in fact a citizen?
  5. newacct

    newacct Well-Known Member

    Not necessarily. She could have automatically became a citizen as a minor if she was a permanent resident and both of her parents naturalized, in which case USCIS would not have a record of her becoming a citizen.
  6. SusieQQQ

    SusieQQQ Well-Known Member

    Are you saying no one keeps a record if a minor becomes a citizen when his or her parents naturalize? That doesn’t sound right. Not everyone gets a passport, there surely must be some record somewhere of it happening.

    In any case same argument as above, why would a parent keep an old passport but not their naturalization certificate or a US passport? There doesn’t seem to be anything other than an assumption that the child is a citizen without saying why that might be.
  7. SusieQQQ

    SusieQQQ Well-Known Member

    Hm it seems that’s right. That seems like a huge potential hole in citizenship records. What records do USCIS have associated with that A number then, I wonder?

    In any case don’t know if the OP is still around but looks like in that case they’d need the green card and the parent’s naturalization certificate: https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/passports/information/citizenship-evidence.html
    Doesn’t sound like they have either of those though.
  8. William Bowen

    William Bowen New Member

    If she has her parent's names and date of birth they should be able to figure it out. Unfortunately, the bureaucratic process can be lengthy (filing paperwork, waiting the outcome, etc), when all in all it would take about 2 minutes to have an answer, at least I could if I had the information and official request. If she has her Alien Registration Number (ARN), or just her name and DOB, it will include the parent's names. If they have their names and date of birth, they can determine if they naturalized before she was 18. Filing paperwork with US CIS costs a lot of money and people very often do not file the derived citizenship of their children, although many times they take their naturalization paperwork and the whole family to get US passports because it is much cheaper and once you have a passport, you are forever a citizen, even when the passport expires. They have a form that is sort a flow sheet to determine citizenship, although I do not know where you get it, presumably at a passport office. Some problems that could arise are names that may have changed because of marriages or the person shortened their name and their last known name may not be the name they entered the US under. Good luck.

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