Ever wondered about the difference between a green card holder and a US citizen. Well, most of us have. There are a lot of differences between the both, although both have the rights to live legally in the United States.
Green Card VS Citizenship
When a US citizen can enjoy every right provided by the constitution, a green card holder have only limited privileges. Let us have a deep look into this.
Being a green card holder in the USA, you have certain privileges like the right to live in the United States till the day you want. You have the right to permanently live in the country. Also, you can bring your immediate family members to reside with you. But you will remain the citizen of the country where you originated, also you will not have the privileges to vote in the US elections.
A green card holder can also receive social security benefits, supplemental security income, or healthcare benefits. you can travel in and out of the United States at your convenience without being worried about the risk of getting denied by the immigration officials but must carry the passport and the green card whenever you travel in and out of the country. You are eligible for government-sponsored financial aid for your education.
A green card holder is also eligible for federal benefits such as food stamps, services for victims of domestic violence, and temporary assistance for Needy Families. Your yearly income and the period of your residence in the United States may have a role in deciding the eligibility for federal benefits.
So now let’s have a look into the privileges enjoyed by a US citizen.
First of all who is eligible to be a US citizen? One can become a US citizen by birth in the United States, through US citizen parents. Someone from a foreign country if he/she has a green card can apply for US citizenship. This process is called naturalization.
What are the eligibilities you require to apply for citizenship in the United States?
- You have to live at least for 5 years continuously in the US after you receive your green card
- You have lived in the US for at least 30 months out of those five years
- Must be able to read, write and speak basic English language
- Must pass a test of basic US history and government questions
- Must not have any criminal background and must have a moral character
After being a US citizen you will have the right to vote in the US elections, also you can run for a seat in public office. You will be eligible to receive a US passport which is issued by the U.S. State Department. Some countries allow privileges like visa-free travel for US citizens and you will be eligible for this.
A US citizen can apply for visas for your relatives to live in the U.S. Green card holders are not allowed to apply for visa for siblings but when you are a US citizen you can. You will never have to worry about deportation unless you have committed forgery in order to obtain the green card or citizenship.
A US citizen will be eligible for federal employee benefits and also from US tax law.
If you wish to know more our independent top immigration attorneys in USA can help you.