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Denaturalization, the Process of Being Stripped of U.S. Citizenship, on the Rise

While it is possible to strip U.S. citizenship from a foreign national who acquired it through naturalization, there are only a handful of reasons that would provide the U.S. government with the requisite legal support for undertaking such drastic action. This process is known as denaturalization. In most cases of denaturalization, there was some type of fraud that was committed by the foreign national in order to acquire U.S. citizenship. Accordingly, the government argues that inasmuch as the fraud allowed the foreign national to obtain citizenship to which that person was not entitled, it is justified for the citizenship to be taken away from that person. However, the Trump administration, consistent with its mission to drastically reduce U.S. immigration, both legal and illegal ( See 'This is where my everything is': U.S. citizen suddenly faces deportation), has been "pushing the envelope" when it comes to denaturalization.

Specifically, the administration has been attempting to expand the reasons under which a person, who was lawfully granted U.S. citizenship, can be stripped of it. Typically, in such cases, the government also seeks to strip the person of their U.S. permanent residence as well. However, a U.S. citizen cannot be relieved of his/her status as a U.S. permanent resident until he/she has first been stripped of U.S. citizenship.

Now, it appears that a U.S. citizen has to be concerned about potentially losing previously lawfully acquired U.S. citizenship so long as that person has relatives against whom denaturalization proceedings are being brought by the U.S. government. The expanded use of denaturalization proceedings is yet another example of why it is extremely important for foreign nationals to retain professional assistance from an immigration lawyer whenever presenting an immigration application to the government.

It is not uncommon for the government to claim that a foreign national committed fraud on an application that was submitted decades earlier. If the government is taking this position with a pending application for an immigration benefit, they would deny the application unless the foreign national also submits a "fraud waiver" application. On the other hand, if the government is taking this position with a person who has already acquired U.S. citizenship, they will initiate denaturalization proceedings and attempt to take away not only the individual's U.S. citizenship but U.S. permanent residence as well.

We assist countless foreign nationals and we will be happy to personally assist you with your application as well. Drop us a line at or call us at (888)354-6257. For reasons on why you should consult an immigration attorney whenever you have an immigration issue, see our page titled: Reasons Why it is Vital to Use an Immigration Lawyer.



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