US Citizenship versus Permanent Residence

 In Szew Law Group Blog, US Permanent Residence (Green Card)

Deciding between US Citizenship or Permanent Residence? This article is a must read!

So, you’ve made it to the land of the free and home of the brave and have a green card to prove it! Congrats! But let’s talk about the elephant in the room – you can’t vote in federal elections or travel as freely as you’d like. Bummer, right? If you want to be a full-fledged member of the American club, you gotta get that citizenship. But hold on, is it really the way to go? Let’s weigh the pros and cons of becoming a citizen versus remaining a permanent resident.

Pros of Getting U.S. Citizenship

Ability to Vote

As mentioned earlier, permanent residents cannot vote in federal elections, but as a U.S. citizen, you have the right to vote in all elections, from local to national. This right to vote is a significant aspect of citizenship, and it allows citizens to participate fully in American democracy.

Protection from Deportation

Permanent residents can be deported if they commit certain crimes or violate immigration laws. While citizenship does not provide absolute protection from deportation, it does offer some additional security. Generally, it’s harder to deport a citizen than a permanent resident.

Eligibility for Certain Jobs

Some jobs, particularly those in government or law enforcement, require U.S. citizenship. If you plan to pursue a career in these fields, becoming a citizen is essential.

Ability to Travel Freely

As a permanent resident, you are free to travel within the United States, but you may face restrictions when leaving the country. For example, you may need a re-entry permit if you plan to be outside the United States for more than one year. As a citizen, you can travel freely without worrying about these restrictions.

Cons of Getting U.S. Citizenship

Time and Expense

The naturalization process can be lengthy and expensive. You must meet certain requirements, including a residency requirement, pass a citizenship test, and pay fees. The entire process can take up to a year or more, and the costs can add up.

Dual Citizenship Restrictions

Some countries do not allow their citizens to hold dual citizenship, which means that if you become a U.S. citizen, you may have to renounce your citizenship in your country of origin. This can be a difficult decision for some people.

Tax Obligations

U.S. citizens are required to pay taxes on their worldwide income, regardless of where they live. This can be a significant financial burden for some people, particularly if they live in a country with higher taxes than the United States.

Jury Duty

As a citizen, you are required to serve on a jury if you are called. While this is a civic duty, it can be an inconvenience for some people.


Ultimately, the decision to become obtain US citizenship versus staying a Permanent Resident is a personal one that depends on your individual circumstances and goals. If you want to fully integrate into American society, take advantage of all the benefits that come with citizenship, and participate in American democracy, becoming a citizen may be the right choice for you. However, if you are satisfied with your current status as a permanent resident and do not wish to take on the added responsibilities and obligations of citizenship, there is no shame in remaining a permanent resident. Ultimately, the most important thing is to make an informed decision that is right for you. To read more blogs like this one visit our BLOG PAGE